Auger stuck in drain

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Common Tator, May 30, 2012.

  1. Common Tator

    Common Tator Uber Tuber

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    Hubby was using his electric auger to clean out our kitchen sink drain. We have a clean out opening under the sink. So that is where he ran the auger. He got it about 5 feet down the drain, and it got stuck. He thinks the snake kinked while in the pipe. He pulls with all his might and some of it comes out, but won't go any farther. As soon as he lets go, it zips right back into the pipe.

    I did some research online. A plumber was saying that when this happened he used a come along. The line snapped and nearly killed him.

    Years ago we had a plumber replace some of this same line. He put in the clean out for us. I watched what he did. He replaced about 3-4 feet of rusted metal pipe with PVC. Where he joined up the PVC with metal, he used one of those rubber sleeves held in place with hose clamps.

    I suggested to hubby that we open the wall where this repair was made. Remove that rubber sleeve. It should put us very close to where the auger is stuck.

    Does anyone have any suggestions that don't involve tearing out drywall?
     
  2. Nevada

    Nevada Voice of Reason Supporter

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    Usually when it gets stuck you have entered a larger diameter pipe after picking-up a hairball. If you are persistent you can eventually pull it out.

    But that happens more in bathrooms than in kitchen sinks. About how far are you in? I'm concerned that the snake's cutting bit snagged on something.

    But if you have to go in, fixing a hole in drywall isn't all that serious.
     

  3. vicker

    vicker Well-Known Member

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    Oh man, I feel for him. How far is the clean out from the wall? Maybe he could cut the pipe near where it enters the wall ( leave enough to piece in a new coupling). Would that give him a straighter pull, or put significantly closer? That's a small snake. He should be able to pull if he can get a good straight pull on it.
     
  4. Common Tator

    Common Tator Uber Tuber

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    It's only about 5 feet in.

    I can repair the drywall.

    I agree, repairing the drywall isn't too big a deal. I just had hoped to avoid it.
     
  5. Common Tator

    Common Tator Uber Tuber

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    The clean out is right at the wall. It only stands out an inch or two. He couldn't get a straighter shot than he already has.
     
  6. vicker

    vicker Well-Known Member

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    Has he tried cussing? :D I'm sorry, all I can advise is pull harder. I wouldn't hook a come along to it though.
     
  7. Harry Chickpea

    Harry Chickpea Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Vicker, cussing doesn't work as effectively as describing the torture the implement will suffer if you have to retrieve it. It should be loud enough that all appliances in the home will be able to hear it.

    I would do that, auger in the forward direction, then yank back. If it didn't come out immediately, I'd send in the hounds.
     
  8. vicker

    vicker Well-Known Member

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    This is true, HC, but sometimes you just can't reason with them. You're right though, try talking to it first.
     
  9. Nimrod

    Nimrod Guest

    The head is stuck. When he pulls out he is just stretching the coil like stretching a spring and when he lets go it goes back in.

    The head is a coil bigger than the body. It can get twisted up in a hairball by being screwed into it. Try twisting it backwards to unscrew it.
     
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  10. vicker

    vicker Well-Known Member

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    Excellent advice. I think that might do it.
     
  11. davel745

    davel745 Well-Known Member

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    The dry wall is the least of the problems. If you have to tear out pipe to fix the problem that could be a real pain.
     
  12. good2beus

    good2beus Well-Known Member

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    Harry and Vicker - you guys are funny - made my morning!! Common Tater, I hope it is resolved and you didn't have to cut into the drywall.
     
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  13. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I would cut into the wall where the coupler is and see what you find when you remove the coupler. I'll bet that's where it's hung up.
     
  14. blooba

    blooba Well-Known Member

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    Usually if you turn it in the reverse direction enough it will come unstuck, although if the head isnt rotating in either direction you may have a problem, I've always been able to get mine out although have seen them stuck for good.

    Just keep spinning it ,mostly in the reverse direction and keep pulling on it, although you may have to go forward some to get it loose.

    Good Luck.
     
  15. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    As others have suggested, run the auger in reverse to take the kink out of the coil.
     
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  16. Common Tator

    Common Tator Uber Tuber

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    The bit on the end of the auger is like two curved knives. Like the one in the upper right corner here: HEAVY DUTY DRAIN CLEANER SEWER MACHINE AUGER BITS, CUTTING EDGES (MADE IN USA!!) | eBay He doesn't ave the springy bit on it.

    He tried pushing it in farther while running, and he tried running it in reverse. That doesn't work. He tried pulling with all his might. That doesn't work either.

    We won't be back there until the weekend. We're at the ranch now.
     
  17. vicker

    vicker Well-Known Member

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    Oh man, that doesn't look good. Wish y'all luck. When I first moved to Boston I managed an old (1919), 42 unit apartment building. The old cast and threaded pipe plumbing was nightmarish and there were no individual shut offs. Any little job snowballed into a major rebuild. I think the first problem I had I used a snake and it got stuck. I finally retrieved it, but, after that I never used one again. I just saved my time started tearing the old stuff out. I'm sure that's not the case of yall's cabin. Your problem is just bring up my old memories :)