Snaking a bathtub drain

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Old 05-11-13, 12:00 PM
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Snaking a bathtub drain

Our bathtub drain is seriously clogged. Snaked it a few times this morning and each time pulled up a good amount of muck and hair. I used a 25 foot snake and was probably at about 22 feet and couldnt go anymore. I think Im hitting the clog but I dont think the snake is long enough. I ran hot water for about 20 minutes and it is still building up in the tub. Im thinking about going and getting a 50 foot snake. How long is a typical drain pipe from the tub? Is it safe to use Drano or Liquid Plumber? Its pvc piping into a metal(I assume copper) pipe. What are my options?
 
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Old 05-11-13, 12:02 PM
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By the time you go 25', certainly there is a clean out somewhere in the line. You are snaking through the overflow, right, and not the drain itself?
 
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Old 05-11-13, 12:11 PM
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Yes snaking through overflow. When you say cleanout do you mean the drain line has a section that I can detatch and clean from that point? How difficult is that?
 
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Old 05-11-13, 12:23 PM
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Often, and not always, there are installed "Y" adapters or sweeps, one threaded with a cap. This Y is turned up most times for obvious reasons. Take the cap off and run your snake from that point. Look along your pipes' travels to the main line to see if you find one. Certainly there is one on the 3 or 4" main line to help you identify it. Measure, too,, how far 25' is from your tub. That will give you a rough estimate where the clog is, or where you are dead ending with the snake.
 
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Old 05-11-13, 03:04 PM
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The pipes are mainly behind walls so it hard to follow the pipe. No real good access. From what I can see I dont see any Y adapters. I have a clear view of the main drain pipe which connects up to the other bathroom. I dont see any Y adapters there. What do you think about buying a longer snake say 50 foot? So its either snake through the tub or find a Y and snake through there.
 
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Old 05-11-13, 03:22 PM
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Highly unusual for the drain in a shower/tub to go for over 22 feet before it meets a stack. Are any other fixtures in or around the tub slow draining? What about other item in the house? I'm guessing that the clog is at the tub drain prior to where it "T's" into the overflow.
 
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Old 05-11-13, 04:47 PM
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Hi, Take a flashlight and look at the drain in the tub ( the shoe). Maybe there is hair in there. Gently pull it out with needle nose pliers.
Good Luck Woodbutcher
 
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Old 05-13-13, 08:26 AM
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Thanks Chandler and others....Ok I think I see a cleanout at the main water drain but it comes out of the floor at an angle. There is a square nut at the top. Doesnt look like its ever been opened. This piping is actually directly under our master bath. I am not sure if cleaning this would work since its about 20-25 feet from the tub drain. But I guess all water flows out the same way. Does this sound like a cleanout? If I attempt this what should I be looking out for? Thanks
 
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Old 05-13-13, 04:16 PM
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Yes, it is a clean out, and in the approximate location you indicate your snake stopped at, so that makes sense. Remove the cap using a large crescent wrench and snake from there. If you get drowned, let us know. That'll mean your stoppage is beyond the clean out.
 
 

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