Blocked sewer main


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Old 04-19-16, 06:29 PM
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Blocked sewer main

I had a back up that started with our bathroom toilet and ended up being the sewer main which the outside overpour overflowed. I tried a simple snake followed by a 75ft 1/2" which seemed to hit a wall so I got one with about 2" attachments. At one point I kept going and hit a wall it seemed and I drew back a bit of clay like substance in the bit it seemed. But I have been unable to draw any back up again. I'm wondering how long it can take to chip away at a main clog? Should I keep going at it? I heard professionals have one with a 6" auger or so that often times will power through it. Is this true or will they have the same 100' electric eel i rented? Unsure if I should try and have a professional auger it with their machine before I pay for it to be scoped. Also is it possible for the snake to run 2 different directions down the overpour spout? I can't see down into it and may be running a different direction each time. I can't tell.
 
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Old 04-19-16, 07:16 PM
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Could roots from trees have blocked the pipe? If that's what happened, it's time to dig.
 
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Old 04-19-16, 07:58 PM
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It's definitely a possibility though I believe the line runs to the front of the house in which there are no large trees. The back has a row of small pines and a large silver maple. I'm trying to figure out how to find out. How deep Will a sewer line be buried? Do I need a permit or to check for power lines before I dig? I know the location of the outside overpour valve but will it fall in a straight line to the street?
 
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Old 04-19-16, 08:17 PM
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The answers to your questions depend on your location. Local electricians & plumbers would know where the pipes & lines are. No permits are need yet.
 
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Old 04-20-16, 05:09 AM
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Yes, always check for utilities before digging. Call the number in your area and say you need to do emergency repairs. It's a free service so take advantage of it.

The need for permits can vary from one municipality to another. In my town a repair does not need a permit. Drain line replacement does need a permit. As you can guess there is a gray area in between determining what is a repair and what is replacement but generally if you are just replacing a section of pipe no permit is needed. Another good clue is if you can hand dig the hole it's a repair of non-permit size. If you bring in an excavator and dig a long trench it's permit time. In my area the work can be done without a permit but you must get the permit and have the work inspected and approved before you can back fill.

The depth of your drain line depends entirely on your conditions but keep in mind that it flows downhill. So wherever you can see the line it heads downhill from there. If your yard slopes uphill in that direction it can be buried quite deep though usually it's reasonably shallow. In my area they are at least 3-4' deep by the time you reach the sewer main at the street.
 
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Old 04-20-16, 07:07 AM
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What the heck is an "overpour" valve?
 
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Old 04-20-16, 10:23 AM
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I'm referring to the place outside where you can access the Main sewage line. I have two. One is cast iron or clay and the other pvc so either part had been replaced before or a second entry was added for some reason. It's odd though. No matter which one I use I seem to make it the same distance or longer in the case of the one closer to the street. We have someone coming to inspect it I guess in a few days for 60 bucks and if it isn't caused by a foreign object or roots causing it, which I can't imagine it being anything but those they pay for it from our home buyers insurance or something.
 
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Old 04-20-16, 01:42 PM
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I think that he means a 'clean out'.
 
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Old 04-20-16, 02:37 PM
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Yes sorry. That is what I meant.
 
 

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