Fixing Clogged Drains
LESLIE: Gail in Georgia is dealing with a sink that just won’t stay unclogged or backed up. What’s going on? This sounds like a disaster.GAIL: It is. (Tom and Leslie chuckle) It’s been going on for quite a while …TOM: OK.GAIL: … and I had Roto-Rooter come out and it would clear up for a little – just a short while. Then I asked the extension agent, “What would you do and what does it sound like?” and he said, “Well, maybe you need new drain fields.” So we had new drain fields put in, we emptied the septic and it still backs up.TOM: Huh. Does it only back up into the one sink?GAIL: That’s right.TOM: Well, have you ever considered having a camera inspection done to the drains?GAIL: No, but I’m a nurse and I understand what that means.TOM: Yeah, well it’s kind of similar to what you might do in surgery. But basically, yes, they run a line through the pipe. It has a camera on the end of it and they can do a drain inspection. It might be that, say, for example, one of your underground waste pipes is cracked; there might be roots that are forming in there and filling it up. I think, at this point, you need to figure out what’s wrong with the drain system because, obviously, wherever it is, it’s not been addressed and I think I would stick a camera down those drains and take a look and see what’s going on.I know Roto-Rooter has those systems. Other drain-cleaning companies have them as well. It’s called a drain camera inspection and they actually can run a tape while this thing is going through and then back it up and you can all take a look at it together. But I’ve seen pipes that were cracked that would have been undetectable any other way and, you know, they would run the snake through it; they’d clean out some roots and two months later the roots would grow right back because, of course, with all that sewage there, it’s a great, very rich environment for the roots to grow.GAIL: Alrighty. I appreciate the information and thanks for taking my call.TOM: You’re welcome. You’re very welcome, Gail. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.