HL 215Rev. May 1994 R EPAIR I T Y OURSELF ! Freeing Clogged Plumbing Lines YOUR PROBLEM: " The plumbing lines are stopped up.
" The fixture overflows. " The fixtures cannot be used. WHAT YOU NEED FOR THE JOB: " Commercial drain cleaner " Funnel " Plumber's friend (plunger) " Adjustable wrench " Bucket " Hammer " Cold chisel " Plumber's snake For Clogged Sink Line 1.
A commercial drain cleaner may be used to free a clogged line. It should not be used in pipes that are completely stopped up. Follow directions provided with the product.
(Some products damage zinc pipes, though the directions claim they do not.) 2. As a rule, pour the solution (Figure 1) through a funnel directly into the drain. If it gets on the porcelain finish, it may damage the finish.
Handle cleaner with extreme care. If spilled on hands or clothing, wash with cold water immediately. 3.
To restart drainage flow blocked by slight obstructions in the trap or line, use a "plumber's friend" (every house should have one) (Figure 2). Water must be standing in the fixture when the plunger is used. Place the suction cup over the mouth of the drain opening.
Work the handle up ... more. less.
and down, keeping the cup directly over the mouth of the drain. 4. Hold a wet cloth over the overflow opening (if there is one) to keep air out.<br><br> 5. If all else fails, you must clean out the fixture trap. Remove the fixture trap with an adjustable wrench.<br><br> 6. Figure 3 shows a lavatory trap removed for cleaning. Be sure to provide a bucket to catch the water that will spill out.<br><br> 7. When replacing the trap, make certain that the rubber washers are still firm and tight 4they will not hold if mushy and loose. For Clogged Tub Line 1.<br><br> Open the P-trap or the tub drum located under the tub drain. The P-trap may be removed with an adjustable wrench. If the tub has a drum trap, it may be opened by using a wrench on the nut at the center of the cover.<br><br> If this is worn, use a hammer and punch as shown in Figure 4. 2. Remove any foreign material found in the trap.<br><br> 3. Replace the gasket if it is damaged. For Clogged Toilet Line 1.<br><br> If toilet is clogged, the best way to reach into it is with a small cleanout auger (Figure 5) or other flexible device. Most obstructions will be located at the top of the trap as illustrated. Washers Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 5 "REPAIR IT YOURSELF" SERIES HL 209, Replace a Broken Window HL 210, Fix Problem Doors HL 211, Repairing Screens (Patching Small Holes) HL 213, Using Basic Tools HL 214, Restoring Electric Current HL 216, Repairing Toilet Tanks "YOU CAN DO IT" SERIES HL 219, Fastening Things to Walls HL 220, Repairing Walls HL 221, Repairing a Leaky Faucet HL 222, Repairing a Toilet HL 223, Weatherizing Your Home HL 224, Fixing Screens on Doors and Windows HL 225, Replacing Broken Window Glass HL 226, Space-Stretching Drawer and Shelf Storage HL 227, Space-Stretching Hanging Storage HL 228, Interior-Exterior Painting: Selecting Brushes and Rollers HL 229, Interior Painting: Painting Walls and Ceilings HL 230, Exterior Painting: Painting Your House HL 231, Exterior Painting: Solving House Paint Problems HL 232, Electrical Repairs You Can Do!<br><br> HL 233, Repairing Cracks Around Bathtub and Shower For a single copy of any of the above, call your county office of the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service. 2. Use a plumber's friend or plunger to restart drainage flow blocked by slight obstructions in the trap or line.<br><br> Water must be standing in the fixture when the plunger is used (Figure 6). Do not use the same plunger in sinks and lavatories as you do in toilets unless it has been properly sterilized. For Clogged Branch Drains 1.<br><br> You may have to take apart the fixture drain enough to reach into the branch drain with a cleanout auger or plumber's snake. 2. When the stoppage occurs in the building drain, it is easily reached through the foot-of-the- stack cleanout opening (Figure 7.) Figure 6 Figure 7 3.<br><br> Cleanout augers or snakes may be hand-operated or operated by an electric motor. The constant removing of the flexible cable will ease it through the pipe and clear the obstruc- tion. YOUR REWARD: " Plumbing is usable again.<br><br> " There are no more overflows and water to clean up. Prepared by: Helen McMillan, Former instructor, Home Economics and Jane Burgess, Former assistant, Home Economics For further information contact Linda Redmann, Extension residential housing specialist The Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, or disability and is an e qual opportunity employer. Clemson University Cooperating with U.S.<br><br> Department of Agriculture and South Carolina Counties. Issued in Furtherance of Cooperative Extension Work in Agriculture and Home Economics, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914. <br><br>