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mochyn

Unblocking a sink

...and I can't find the plunger.

Any other suggestions? It's the kitchen sink and it feeds into the septic tank.
Treacodactyl

I've used the palm of my hand before now to form a suction cup. You could try an old yoghurt pot or similar?
mochyn

Treacodactyl wrote:
I've used the palm of my hand before now to form a suction cup. You could try an old yoghurt pot or similar?


I'll have a go...
Shane

Whenever ours gets blocked it's a strip down job. The missus claims that she doesn't know how to do it every time, even though she normally hovers around asking if I've finished yet. Laughing
mochyn

Shane wrote:
Whenever ours gets blocked it's a strip down job. The missus claims that she doesn't know how to do it every time, even though she normally hovers around asking if I've finished yet. Laughing


Really hoping that isn't the case. The old chap will be home in a few hours and I suspect he knows where the plunger is.

Meanwhile, Treac's 'hand over the drainer' trick has worked for now.
Treacodactyl

mochyn wrote:
Shane wrote:
Whenever ours gets blocked it's a strip down job. The missus claims that she doesn't know how to do it every time, even though she normally hovers around asking if I've finished yet. Laughing


Really hoping that isn't the case. The old chap will be home in a few hours and I suspect he knows where the plunger is.

Meanwhile, Treac's 'hand over the drainer' trick has worked for now.


Well when the old chap gets in just ask him to strip down and find the plunger. Shocked Laughing
mochyn

Treacodactyl wrote:
mochyn wrote:
Shane wrote:
Whenever ours gets blocked it's a strip down job. The missus claims that she doesn't know how to do it every time, even though she normally hovers around asking if I've finished yet. Laughing


Really hoping that isn't the case. The old chap will be home in a few hours and I suspect he knows where the plunger is.

Meanwhile, Treac's 'hand over the drainer' trick has worked for now.


Well when the old chap gets in just ask him to strip down and find the plunger. Shocked Laughing


Ya b*gg*r!
dougal

With enough hands, you can use a towel as a makeshift plunger. Its the sucking that helps dislodge things...


If its running through, but not fast, that's an ideal time to use a chemical cleaner - BUT that's usually a bad idea with a septic tank.

I sort-of suspect that a bit of 'biological' detergent (and a lot of time) might make some impression too.

Generally, its grease that's responsible for the build-up of gunge that narrows the pipe and makes it more susceptible to blocking. Hence avoiding, where possible, putting grease down the plug does a lot to minimise such troubles. So wiping out frying pans with newspaper (to then be composted?) before washing the pan, does help in the long run. Someone I Used to Know was a zealot in that regard.
sean

Filling the drain area with caustic soda then pouring on boiling water shifts a lot of stuff. Much of it onto your ceiling.

Don't try this at home. Not at your own home anyway.
mochyn

sean wrote:
Filling the drain area with caustic soda then pouring on boiling water shifts a lot of stuff. Much of it onto your ceiling.

Don't try this at home. Not at your own home anyway.


And I don't really want to bung a load of Caustic into the septic tank...

I wonder if bicarb would help?
Treacodactyl

I've always found a sink plunger shifts anything so I'd wait for it to turn up before resorting to chemicals. After all, if it's good enough for a Dalek it's good enough for me. Cool
mochyn

Treacodactyl wrote:
I've always found a sink plunger shifts anything so I'd wait for it to turn up before resorting to chemicals. After all, if it's good enough for a Dalek it's good enough for me. Cool


Very true.

I'll do that, then.
dougal

mochyn wrote:
sean wrote:
Filling the drain area with caustic soda then pouring on boiling water shifts a lot of stuff. Much of it onto your ceiling.

Don't try this at home. Not at your own home anyway.


And I don't really want to bung a load of Caustic into the septic tank...

I wonder if bicarb would help?

I believe that its the making of (water soluble) soap out of the drain grease that is why caustic soda is so effective - and I doubt bicarb is strong enough to do much.


There is the story of the plumber who was called out late at night to attend to a doctor's blocked loo. Taking a quick look, he chucked in a couple of fizzy asprins and departed with the words "Call me if its not better in the morning!"
mochyn

dougal wrote:
There is the story of the plumber who was called out late at night to attend to a doctor's blocked loo. Taking a quick look, he chucked in a couple of fizzy asprins and departed with the words "Call me if its not better in the morning!"


Maybe I'll try that too...
cab

dougal wrote:

I believe that its the making of (water soluble) soap out of the drain grease that is why caustic soda is so effective - and I doubt bicarb is strong enough to do much.


Yep. A bit of caustic soda is excellent for shifting grease from a blocked sink, its quite effective if its other scraps too.

Whats the typical volume of a septic tank? I'd have thought a little caustic soda should be well and truly buffered out in such a system but be useful to unblock a drain. Shouldn't it?
mochyn

cab wrote:
dougal wrote:

I believe that its the making of (water soluble) soap out of the drain grease that is why caustic soda is so effective - and I doubt bicarb is strong enough to do much.


Yep. A bit of caustic soda is excellent for shifting grease from a blocked sink, its quite effective if its other scraps too.

Whats the typical volume of a septic tank? I'd have thought a little caustic soda should be well and truly buffered out in such a system but be useful to unblock a drain. Shouldn't it?


Probably, but the digestion might be as sensitive as yours...
dpack

washing soda and boiling water help
plunger or flexible container ,cover overflow ,push and pull
make sure plunger or tub is full of water when squelching
pricey

sean wrote:
Filling the drain area with caustic soda then pouring on boiling water shifts a lot of stuff. Much of it onto your ceiling.

Don't try this at home. Not at your own home anyway.


We use a product at work that does this, I call it Genie Juice, because it goes Puff, great fun, but as Sean says Don't Try this at Home.
Shane

Probably worth mentioning that caustic soda + eyes = blindness. Even a little splash is like to do some damage.
mochyn

It's OK now. The old chap couldn't find the plunger either, but Treac's 'hand over the hole' trick seems to have worked.

And don't worry, Shane: I make soap regularly so I'm au fait with the perils of caustic soda and always wear goggles & thick rubber gloves for such work!
Jonnyboy

I've used boiling water and a coat hanger to good effect in the past.
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