Saturday, 19 October 2019

Calling Houston

“Houston we have a problem!”

This morning Jan discovered the water wasn’t going down the kitchen sink and the problem was passed to the one who is prepared to get dirty.  A quick visual check and the water was indeed not draining from the sink.  Look for the simple things first.  Well it didn’t turn out to be that simple.

Before I could get at the ‘S’ trap under the sink I needed to remove the housing frame that holds the two sliding bins.


I discovered grunting loudly helped with the removal Smile  A bucket was placed under the ‘S’ trap to catch the water in the pipe and basin.  I was also anticipating some rather “yucky” gunk.  However the water was almost clear.  There is an inspection cap on the wall outside which I removed and was then able to see the pipes were clean.  Everything was reinstated and I was thinking we had cleared an air lock when Jan pointed out the water spreading across the patio pavers from the drain under the air conditioner.

My simple task suddenly became considerably more complex.  We had an underground blockage somewhere in the sewer pipe.


Water was bubbling up from this drain

I removed the circular plastic grate from the pipe discovering there was a lead weight attached by wire to the underside of the grate.  This grate is actually the access point to another larger ‘S’ trap.  There are at least two ways of clearing this blocked pipe.  Hiring a powered flexible auger or using a plunger.  The latter is the cheaper option.  Fortunately the plunger worked and the kitchen sink drain is again clear.

One of the causes of this blockage was the lead weight attached to the underside of the grate.  It looks like a divers weight.


I’m guessing this drain has previously blocked (perhaps frequently) which would result in the plastic grate floating off.  Attaching the weight to the underside would prevent this but also mask the problem.  Now my parents used to own the house and my father was a qualified diver which tends to point the finger of suspicion at him!  I’ve cut the weight off the grate and we will monitor the drain more closely in future.

Don whilst your suggestion has merit I have another idea.  I’ll fill the barrow with bath rubble and wander the street at 2AM filling my neighbours bins. Smile

No comments :