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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Default The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    Hi,

    I have what appears to be a fairly large problem. My kitchen sink will not drain, not even slowly, unless I run the garbage disposal. Here's what I've tried: Plunging to no avail, removing the p-trap and snaking about 10' in, Drain-o (bad idea I know, but I was desperate), and THEN, in case it was just a ventilation problem, I installed an Air Admittance Valve--no dice.

    I am in a top floor condominium (3 story) that's mid eighties construction but a recent conversion from apartments w/ a total overhaul. None of my neighbors are having similar problems (downstairs or next door), and there are no other clogs anywhere else in my house. I'm stumped. Help?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    7,189

    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    It's possible that the 10' snake wasn't long enough to reach the clog. If it was, then the head of the snake may have poked through, but it wasn't able to clear the blockage. Did your snake have any debris caught in the end when you pulled it out?
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    No, there's wasn't any debris on the end of the snake save for the usual slime. I had a hard time getting it down the pipe further than 10' because there's a 90 degree bend. The weird thing about it is though, that it drains just fine when I run the disposal, but if I don't run it the water will stand in the sink for days. Unless I'm forcing the water into someone's wall (which I would have heard about by now) I don't know how it could drain at all w/ the disposal running. I'll try hitting the snake again, but any other suggestions are more than welcome. Thanks a lot!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    but a recent conversion from apartments w/ a total overhaul
    Has this problem just recently shown up or has it been a problem from day 1?

    If it's been an on going problem I'm suspecting the disposal drain port is too low where it connects to the drain pipe from the wall .

    When you turn on the disposal it's acting like a pump which pushes the water up hill .


    Just a guess.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    It's a single sink, and it wasn't a problem from day 1. When I fill up the sink all the way the water will stay for days, but if I run the disposal it drains. And when it drains, I see a whirlpool, which--according to in-sink-erator's ****** troubleshooting guide--means I have a clogged line. I was about to test that theory and pull the disposal out of line to make sure water didn't just drain with it out of the way, but my wife said she'd punch me in the face if I tried to do plumbing on the 4th of July. Thanks a lot guys, more advice is appreciated.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    And canuck, I'm starting to think you might be right here. It's possible that the disposal waist line is too low, but when I first moved in there was no blockage at all and there was enough force to clear the line. But, after using the disposer for a couple of months and putting some debris in the way, the water has to go through too much trouble to get over that hump and so it sits there until I pump it out. Just thinking....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    The Great White North
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    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    test that theory and pull the disposal out of line
    Good test .... if it is a clogged drain then you should see the same results.

    Unfortunately disposals add to clogged drain problems.

    Good luck and let us know how you make out.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    Here's the update:

    I had a 22yr veteran journeyman plumber come take a look at the problem. He said he's never seen anything like it before. I was wrong about the elbow joint, it is a Tee, one side goes down the waist line and the other side goes up to the vent. The vent is clear, the waist line is clear. He got it down 25' into the main line and it was smooth sailing. Anyway, it's on the HOA now, I'll let you know what they come up with! Thanks guys...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The Great White North
    Posts
    4,045

    Default Re: The Garbage Disposal and the Clog

    Thanks for the update and do keep us posted.
    "" an ounce of perception -- a pound of obscure "
    - Rush

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