Lost sewer snake!!

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  • This topic has 5 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 21 years ago by Avatar photoRobert Stephen Morton.
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    • #279214
      Avatar photoMasterPlumbers
      Keymaster

        I ran 23′ 3/8 snake down my toilet line to unclog it. End of snake came out of machine. Before I could react, it dissapeared down the line! What are my options now??

      • #300279
        Avatar photoRobert Stephen Morton
        Participant

          Blake. You could offer a reward to any municipal worker wot finds it. But then if it has got caught up in the pumps they might find the culprit.
          Bob

        • #300280
          Avatar photonicktheplumber
          Participant

            You have a problem. That snake will result in clogs of the line as solid waste will hang up on it. You should try to retreive it. Also, it is not going to go too far down the line. You could get a sewer contractor with a video camera and other equipment to grab hold of the snake and pull it back. Otherwise you will have to bust into the line and get it out manually.

            The good news is that the end of it shouldn’t be too far from where you lost hold of it.

          • #300281
            Avatar photoRobert Stephen Morton
            Participant

              Hey Nick, It sounded like he attempted to clear the blockage & when the snake was fully out the blockage cleared. With the velocity of the water escaping, it is conceivable, if all the other drainage is in good order that the snake could end up in the closest pump well & cause thousands of dollars damage to the Pumps. However if the municipal system is not too good, then the snake could cause much headaches for the authority with plumbers having to work overtime to clear the snake from their system.
              Do you see that the ley person carrying out their own plumbing has far reaching repurcussions to the rest of the community.
              Bob

            • #300282
              Avatar photonicktheplumber
              Participant

                Morton,

                I guess it is possible, but I’ve never heard of a drain snake making its way from a building drain to the building sever and into the municipal sewer and thence into the municipal waste management treatment plant sewer pumps…

                I’d say it is most likely that this 20+ feet of snake is stuck somewhere in the building sewer. I guess if it somehow makes it to the municipal sewer in the middle of the street, it might be washed a couple of miles down into the waste treatment plant… And before you get to any of the pumps in the threatment plant, there will usually be a sump pit into which a snake would sink.

                Furthermore, at least here in the US, most building drains include a U-trap between the building drain and the building sewer line outside the foundation perimeter. How a snake would make it through that, I have no idea.

              • #300283
                Avatar photoRobert Stephen Morton
                Participant

                  Nick. Agreed, if you worl in Boundary trap areas (there are a few areas in the older cities but nowdays we work on property venting of the municipal sewers)you could be right, but a 23ft sewer snake sounds like a sani snake to me, or 3/8″ snake for cleaning up to 2″ waste pipe.
                  If ths snake had caught in a lump of root & then dislodged the blockage, then it would easily negotiate a boundary trap with its velocity.
                  Bob

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