When you go out for the evening. You come home and your wife says “My iPad is dead and I need a charger” and you have been meaning to get her the long cord for convenience… but you haven’t and you say “I will do the right thing” and you go down in the basement and see a spattering of random unidentifiable substances, water and spaghetti all over the place it is good that you once worked construction as you are about to say “OH SHIT!” Moments later you will need to diagnose the problem and to fix it you will need to know the number one rule of plumbing – Shit flows downhill….
So… that’s the run-on version of my evening, but let’s fill in a few blanks. Earlier tonight – my “right” sink was backing up. I tried a little “trickery” and plunged it. Unfortunately, we had spaghetti for dinner and the two sinks are connected in a T-format below … and in doing so I think I sucked stuff through the drain in a powerful manner, thrusting spaghetti into an already diminished drain. Fortunately – I cant really say I made any other mistakes this evening – but in retrospect, a snake might be better for a sink. Save your poo-pumper for the crapper.
Anyway … like I said, I went down to the basement and found a HUGE mess. I’ll probably gripe more aobut that on various social media sites tomorrow, but for now, lets just say it was a MESS! I couldn’t figure it out… but insulation was coming out and it was apparent that the water had erupted form a 4″ piece of PVC in the rafters. “Who cut my pipe off?” Well, knowing a LITTLE bit about plumbing, I stare it down and decide this is some sort of vent. Okay… if its backing up and coming out here… the plug has to be DOWNHILL…. but 4″ pvc has an inside diameter of about 3.5″, which is smaller than my paw. No snake… where do I head at 10:30? Walmart… of course. I get a snake (they had a couple for next to nothing – bonus – and I used my card – so I supported my employer… anyway, we digress).
I get home and start snaking. This is where the aroma in, on and around me got funky. Leave it at that. It was bad. I feel like I’m making progress so we test it…. shower number 2. UGH! This is sick and nasty. I am not having fun. I analyze things a big more and spend some more time figuring out an option.
I pull a clean-out plate off the pipe and snake from the other direction. I get the garden hose, kink it all up and FLOOD the pipe. I hear debris flowing fast… PROGRESS! We have FLOW!
Well – We did some more testing and I am happy to say the “easy” part of this job is probably done. Just think … if I didn’t know the #1 rule of plumbing, I’d be calling roto-router tomorrow and paying a fat man to show me his crack and fix my pipe! I can do without the large bill, the crack and/or the other man messing with my pipe.
Please note – this is not for the weak at heart (or stomach) or the soft headed! When dinner comes out of pipe and lands on your shoulder, it’s really kind of similar to a stranger on a subway barfing on you. Additionally – when a pair of channel locks falls off the rafter and lands on top of your bald head – you get a fun new scab. UGH! First baldness … now a hole in my head! Just what I needed!