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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Frozen sewer line

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Circus

01-31-2014 04:11:48
69.95.141.184



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Frozen sewer line

If it's been really cold out and you've not been heavily using your septic system, don't have any badly dripping faucets. The water will freeze on the way to the septic tank, one drip at a time. Once plugged all the water freezes. Ugh!




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rodm1

02-09-2014 15:07:10
98.243.10.33



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Could you fill the pipe up with salt then add hot water and let sit. Probably wouldn't be good for the leach field.



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Billy NY

01-31-2014 13:43:19
72.226.79.200



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Another possibility, could be if you had some crazy freeze thaw weather, whereas the leach field gets saturated, can't drain through. Its kind of an anomaly, happened here once, and its a large capacity system that has never even been used close to its potential. I think the top thawed, below it was froze, then it rained like heck, sure enough backed up, thankfully with such a large tank, got it pumped out, allowing plenty of time for whatever it was to correct itself and never happened again. I had to think about it, realizing eventually it was the darned weather !

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Bret4207

02-01-2014 05:39:17
64.19.90.196



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Billy NY, 01-31-2014 13:43:19  
If it's plastic about all you can do is pump hot water into the line. The bad part is the crap and water are going to flow out the opening until it clears. How you handle that, I don't know.
You could heat the ground above the pipe until it thawed, but again, it's going to take a long time and a lot of wood. Days I'm thinking. I've seen it done.



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circus

02-01-2014 06:23:40
69.95.141.57



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Bret4207, 02-01-2014 05:39:17  
Thankfully the sewer decided to backup through the floor drain when the washing machine emptied. Don't know whether it was the styrefoam covering or warm water that cleared it.



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Ted in NE-OH

01-31-2014 12:02:33
65.25.30.63



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Do you have a roof vent for your stack? I would think the vent gases from a working septic would keep it thawed. Another possibility, flush yeast down the toilet to get the digestion working more active and more gases.

Roto Rooter probably auger through ice.



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farmerwithmutt

01-31-2014 09:44:36
166.181.3.12



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
may sound odd but works had frozen drain dumped molasses must be something in it but it got the job done.



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ss55

02-01-2014 10:15:26
50.81.112.224



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to farmerwithmutt, 01-31-2014 09:44:36  
Would the sugars in molasses feed the bacteria?



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LOU from Wi.

01-31-2014 09:32:43
174.124.49.64



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Circus. Had a friend(now passed away) that had a trailer court. Use to thaw lines(water/Sewer) with electric welder, as long as the water pipes were metal and the sewer pipe wasn't orange berg. Worked good for him. LOU



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PJH

01-31-2014 07:27:56
50.40.254.103



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Our church septic tank is on the highest point on the property. It could have been set 50 feet lower in elevation, but that's a whole 'nother story. Consequently, when we added on the the church, we had to have minimal coverage in order to allow drainage. The line only has about an inch of cover where it enters the building. The plumbers who helped/advised us on the remodel cautioned us about leaving a faucet drip in freezing weather. They guaranteed it would freeze, and in a church, might not be noticed for a week.

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NoNewParts

01-31-2014 06:17:17
67.240.154.26



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see

after 35 years here I had that last year on my 4" exit line from the tank. same deal, leaky faucets.

Plumber friend let me borrow one of those expanding plug things that you hook a hose to, to push water pressure down the line.

dug up the tank access, put it in the exit pipe and let it run for hours. Lucky, there must have still been some pinholes in the ice and it eventually cleared.

no leaks now and much colder, no problems

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showcrop

01-31-2014 05:54:58
75.67.231.80



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
I have been thinking about this. My sewer pipe runs a substantial distance to the tank. It has been unusually cold here in NH this winter and my line is not very deep and not steeply pitched but it is pitched according to code. One thing that I know helps is that with every flush some warm air is pushed back up out of the tank and ultimately out the vent on my roof. I believe that it is better to not have a field vent in order to get this warm air coming up the pipe.

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tomturkey

01-31-2014 05:54:13
216.81.211.253



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to Circus, 01-31-2014 04:11:48  
I once had that with a two inch line that got plugged and then froze. It was shallow, and normally heat from septic would have kept it flowing , but with the plug up it froze. Opened a clean out at the end put garden hose in hooked up to hot water at the wash machine spigot. Took a bit but opened it up. I even left the brass nozzle on to get the jetting action. Not a good thing when evering you touch is freezing. Good luck.....gobble

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dpendzic

01-31-2014 11:41:09
24.184.14.235



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to tomturkey, 01-31-2014 05:54:13  
I did exactly the same thing to mine when it froze up.



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circus

01-31-2014 06:48:56
69.95.141.191



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 Re: Frozen sewer line in reply to tomturkey, 01-31-2014 05:54:13  
Except for laying sheets of styrofoam over the ground, I cleared it basicily the same way. What a mess! If only I would have flushed or something before it was too late.



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