Sllooowwww Drains...again : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread

I have a somewhat jerry rigged grey water drain here. I have a slight decline and my sinks and showers are running to a pipe with holes in it, in a 45 to fifty foot trench that is filled with rocks and sand. Every now and again it just wants to stop draining for me. I don't have grease, but I do have dog hair, anything I can do on a regular basis to keep the buggers draining? It hasn't been raining lately so it isn't that the ground just can't take anymore moisture. Tips would be highly appreciated!!

-- Doreen (, May 01, 2001


Off the top of my head here, but could it be an issue with the air vent instead? Maybe it's not getting enough air to allow the water to drain?

-- StevenB (, May 01, 2001.

Air? It needs air???? Oh my gosh. That is probably it!! I can fix that with a drill in the morning. How cool! I'll let you know if it doesn't work....or if it does. Thanks!

-- Doreen (, May 01, 2001.

First off, if you don't make sure there is NO food bits, etc going down the kitchen drain, take it off that section of the graywater system!! Even a tiny bit of meat, single kernal of corn or a single noodle can cause big problems with little holes. Also - lint from a washer can clog it. What about 'people' hair??? I know that causes a lot of problems here... Soapy hair is a major problem for all plumbing, not just graywater - ask me... I'll tell you, LOL!!

Is there anything like a bush or tree near the pipes? Any large plant within a few feet can send in roots... I hope not, as your only recourse then is to dig up the pipe to clear it... And either move the pipe or the bush/tree causing the problem.

If you make soap, lye is the best thing to unclog the pipes. Also, it won't hurt the gardens as much as the new drain cleaners. After all... there is a certain amount of lye in your soapy water anyway - just make really really sure that you flush it thoroughly!

-- Sue Diederich (, May 02, 2001.

I didn't get to do it this morning, so I don't know yet about the air quotient.

My dogs contribute more hair to my drains than I do, but of course there is no way to insure that not a piece of food gets down the drain. I use my strainers, but still, oatmeal will find a way.

My goats are all dry right now. I expect to be making soap in the end off June, but the drains can't wait that long;).

-- Doreen (, May 03, 2001.

Air doesn't help. Lye didn't help. There are no trees right there. I am irritated. What kind of strange entity causes plumbing to foul up when you are expecting comapny???? Nuts. I think I will pour a whole can of lye down the drains tomorrow and then we will see how it flows. Other ideas? Thanks!

-- Doreen (, May 03, 2001.

I got it!!!! There is a thing called "Drain King" which is a pressure bulb thingee that you attach to the end of a garden hose and slip into the drain. It pulses and blasts out the obstruction! I love it and am considering running an endorsement for them. NO chemicals, NO plunging, NO bailing, Drain King is the dream opener!!!! Ya gotta have it!

-- Doreen (, May 04, 2001.

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