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removing roots from a drain
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JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7745
Location: 91 N
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 1:51 pm    Post subject: removing roots from a drain  Reply with quote    

What's the best way to clean out a drain which is blocked. I suspect part of it is blocked with roots.

I have used a pressure washer and drain jet to clear out the first 15 m or so which runs along side the house. Then I hit an obstruction and it isn't moving. It's a surface water drain which runs under a concrete and brick patio so I can't dig it up. It goes into a soak away somewhere downhill from that so I can't find the far end and clear it out from the bottom.

I could use chemical agents but I don't want to as it is a ground water soak away and they could come out anywhere.

Any suggestions?

NorthernMonkeyGirl



Joined: 10 Apr 2011
Posts: 4205
Location: Peeping over your shoulder
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Can you borrow a camera on a bendy stick and have a good look at the problem iitially?

JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7745
Location: 91 N
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Not for the moment. My last attempt to unblock it has left it underwater for the moment. But yes I can probably do that once it's drained.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32591
Location: yes
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

if it is roots it means the integrity of the pipe is breached so dig and mend is the only proper option as even if you can clear it the problem will return.

sometimes a clog can be removed using drain rods with the corkscrew type fitting on the end or by vigorous jet washing (plant in a van time) but the original break, collapse or separation will remain to leak or repeat the problem.

sometimes dig and reroute the pipe run can be a cheaper and easier option(under buildings/under nice concrete etc etc )

bad luck mate,such things need fixing properly or else they do tend to cause a far worse set of problems to fix than just clearing the pipe or digging and mending.

somewhere in the ds archives are the photos and traumas of jerkymeister's sewage cascade that involved replacing most of his garden to a depth of a couple of feet.

onemanband



Joined: 26 Dec 2010
Posts: 1449
Location: NCA90
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Totally what Dpack said.
IIRC I gave similar advice before regarding your drain.
I know it's not what you want to hear, but from my experience, it sounds like the pipe will need replacing and the soakaway is more than likely silted up too.

I have managed to trace soakaway pipes under lawn (and eventually find the soakaway) by pushing steel pins into the ground to 'feel' the pipe. Most of the time tho it is a case of educated-guess-work and digging holes.

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 18956
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Drain clearing companies have devices for clearing roots but it'll need CCTVing and if its buggered relaying. This can be done by 'pipe bursting' or moling without having to dig up the patio. I've no idea about costs.

JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7745
Location: 91 N
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 3:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Oh well I'll just reroute the pipe and hope that as I do I can find where the soakaway runs and reconnect it after the patio.

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1322
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 3:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

This may sound a bit far fetched, but it may be worth your while seeing if you can divine water-2 bent welding rods works for me. You will know if you can divine by trying above a known source of water underground and you can follow its path to start with; for example the mains water pipe into the property should register. If you can do it then try to find the outlet of the water and work your way back, you will find no reaction till you hit the blockage. Then start from the first point of water entry and work down to the point where there is no reaction, and in theory.....that's where you start to dig. There are people who divine for a living so it can't be all bad or luck!

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32591
Location: yes
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

moleing and burst/reline are more recent than my professional involvement .

a mix of science and art to find the blockages and deal with them can be relatively inexpensive especially if you can do your own digging or use a machine to do it.

relaying is a fairly straightforward job but requires precision and following all the correct procedures to work well,last a long time and pass building regs inspection.

the materials are not hideously expensive but it does require decent tubes,enough correct bends and sweeps ,traps,rodding points etc etc.there is quite a lot of gravel and concrete involved.

perhaps the best course of action is to get a camera down to find the problems (a couple of hundred quid iirc) and take it from there getting quotes and prognoses for the various options.

ps if it is roots establishing what is at the other end of them and dealing with it is a good idea.

onemanband



Joined: 26 Dec 2010
Posts: 1449
Location: NCA90
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Certainly for moling (don't know about re-lining) they will need to dig a hole at each end to put mole in and to make connections. So there will still be disturbance to your concrete/paving.

I have used moles for water mains, but not for drainage. They don't go round corners, don't go through concrete and they can only go so far. There is often the need for a mini-digger anyway, or other work that the mole-man won't do, so I've rarely found it economical to use one.
Probably cheaper to relay some concrete than get in a mole-man.


If it was me I'd find the pipe/soakaway junction in order to help clear entire pipe length and to check that the soakaway is not silted up.

JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7745
Location: 91 N
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

dpack wrote:
... relaying is a fairly straightforward job but requires precision and following all the correct procedures to work well,last a long time and pass building regs inspection. ...


How much will building regs affect this given that it is a ground water / rain water soak away? It really is little more than a rain water pipe running into a gravel pit somewhere

Last edited by JB on Fri Jul 15, 16 10:25 pm; edited 1 time in total

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32591
Location: yes
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

JB wrote:
dpack wrote:
... relaying is a fairly straightforward job but requires precision and following all the correct procedures to work well,last a long time and pass building regs inspection. ...


How much will building regs affect this given that it is a ground water / rain water soak away? It really is little more than a rain water pipe running into a gravel pit somewhere


if you give them a call on monday they should be able to tell you,at a guess they will say just fix it as it isnt foul water heading for a sewer or septic tank.
im a bit out of touch on the current regs for drainage but rain to a soak away was fairly well down the list in my day so long as it was unlikely to affect a building ,ie under the house to a storm drain or similar situation.

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14556
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

gregotyn wrote:
This may sound a bit far fetched, but it may be worth your while seeing if you can divine water...


Ooh, it's been a long while since we had a good row about divining, and suchlike...

JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7745
Location: 91 N
PostPosted: Fri Jul 15, 16 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Hairyloon wrote:
gregotyn wrote:
This may sound a bit far fetched, but it may be worth your while seeing if you can divine water...


Ooh, it's been a long while since we had a good row about divining, and suchlike...


and there was I feeling all virtuous because I had controlled my urge to bite when I saw that post

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8419

PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 16 6:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Well it is as good a method as any. You can either randomly put in spikes and risk hitting something like the sewer, or you can try divining. I find it works for me, and for a lot of people. At least then the area to be spiked is narrowed down.

I know a lot of people don't believe in divining, but I think there is a good scientific basis for it; used in all the best geophysics equipment.

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