Washing Machine Stand Pipe Won't Drain

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum' started by douglmi, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. Nov 1, 2012 #1

    douglmi

    douglmi

    douglmi

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    Hey everyone,

    My drain pipe for my washing machine won't drain. Well....not very fast. Once the stand pipe (about 30" tall) fills with water, it will drain over about 12 hours. The entire pipe going into the wall is only 1 1/2" in dia. I just bought this house and the inspector didn't catch this one drain that isn't working.

    Yes, I've snaked it with a 25' power snake and that didn't fix it. It found nothing. Someone suggested that I get some sort of bladder and put it on the end of a garden hose to give it a water pressure spray. I just don't see how I'll get a garden house down that pipe very far. Another thought was that the drains may not be vented properly. I'm not sure how to check that. None of the other drains in the house have this issue.

    I'm new on this forum and really appreciate any thoughts that you may have.
     
  2. Nov 1, 2012 #2

    Wuzzat?

    Wuzzat?

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    That's what I use.
    The high pressure hose water fills the pipe up to the blockage and pushes it out. If you don't have the bladder device just put the hose in the pipe a half foot or so and pack the space around the hose with rags. Jam them in there with a stick.
    For difficult jams the hose will try to come out of the pipe, so push down hard. Have a second person turn on the water.

    The last time I did this for a disposal blockage, it held and the hose water came out of the vent pipe on the roof along with chopped vegetables and whatnot, so I plugged the vent pipe roof opening with a small inflatable barrel-shaped device which plumbing supply houses will have.
    This little barrel is used to plug concrete shower stall base drains to check for leaks and it comes in several different sizes.

    That worked in an instant. Most blockages can only withstand a few PSI but a 10' water column (about 4 PSI) in the vent pipe wasn't enough.
    With the vent plugged the pressure went up to 50 PSI or so.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2012
  3. Nov 1, 2012 #3

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    I would check the venting too. Have a look at the roof and see if there is a vent the would be close to that area. If no it might be running across the attic, if so it may not have proper slop and could be full of water.
     
  4. Nov 2, 2012 #4
    We had a house that nothing would solve. The issue was the drain line from the machine to the main line had 0 pitch to it. We tried snake, bladder, acid, etc. It was all temp. fixes.

    We finally had to dig up the whole line, pitch it more.
     
  5. Nov 2, 2012 #5

    Wuzzat?

    Wuzzat?

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    In which case it should have drained more slowly than with a proper pitch, rather than having a clog?

    I guess you could have put in a slurry pump to fix this.

    If a basin in my house does not make a little whirlpool while it's draining then I say it's clogged even if it does eventually empty.
     
  6. Nov 3, 2012 #6

    douglmi

    douglmi

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    Thanks everyone. I'll check into these ideas.
     
  7. Nov 3, 2012 #7

    CallMeVilla

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  8. Nov 3, 2012 #8

    Wuzzat?

    Wuzzat?

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    That's the gadget I have because I had to force water into a horizontal pipe and the rag thing was not doing so well.

    For customers with clogged drains, the plumber who worked in the hardware store with me always asked, "kitchen drain or bathroom", because one was grease and the other was hair.
     
  9. Nov 6, 2012 #9

    douglmi

    douglmi

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    Ok...so I repeated the snake at 5' depth and jiggled it back and forth, removed and reinserted to 10 feet and did the jiggle thing and repeated at 15'. During this process it pulled out fragments of lint about the size of my thumbnail. I then put the stand pipe back on it and tested with pouring water down it again. It was still clogged but drained itself after about 10 min instead of 10 hours. I then put on the rubber hose attachment someone mentioned above. After turning the pressure on for a couple of minutes twice, it cleared out. It then trained perfectly!

    However, when I looked out into the back yard, I could see water coming up from the grass every time the washer was draining. I dug up the pipe this morning and found a crack in the drain line. A tree root had cracked the line and grown into the line. I'll be replacing this next.

    Thanks for all of your thoughts and encouragement.
     
  10. Nov 6, 2012 #10

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Three cheers for Wuzzat! Good call:D
     
  11. Nov 6, 2012 #11

    Wuzzat?

    Wuzzat?

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    That gadget in #7 was not supposed to find pipe breaks, but I guess all's well that ends well.
     
  12. Nov 14, 2012 #12

    douglmi

    douglmi

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    True that! Thanks again.
     
  13. Nov 15, 2012 #13

    notmrjohn

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    Many newer washers don't even have lint traps anymore. Stupid idea. My washer drains into line from kitchen. There is also a rather large crack in slab just about where they join, pro'lly a shift or even collapse in cast iron under there. Its been a perpetual problem. Greasy/soap scum/ lint clog. I hard connected washer to stand pipe with anti-siphon valve. Clog problem became biennial instead of semi-annual at least.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012

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