Drain Cleaning Memphis: DIY Problems

Drain Cleaning Memphis: DIY Problems

  • Drain Cleaning
  • Plumbing

Having a clogged drain can be a major frustration. You may find yourself just staring as that stagnant water slowly goes down your drain. Clogs can cause major disruptions to your day, interrupting even the most basic activities like brushing your teeth or taking a shower. You may start to consider taking on this project yourself by employing store bought chemicals or rented equipment, but this might only make the problem worse. You need a team of experts who can properly identify your issue and create a solution that solves your problem and not just its symptoms. You need a local Memphis crew who will work hard to ensure your satisfaction. you need, Stewart Plumbing.

Here are some of the issues you might encounter when dealing with the do-it-yourself approach:

Store bought chemicals: Chemicals that you buy at a super marketing or home improvement store are meant to fight one kind of drain problem, and one only: gunk. While buildup might be your issue, you won’t truly know what’s going on until you’ve gotten a camera deep into your pipes to find the issue. Sure those chemicals may have let some water through, but if your problem is bigger than that, it will be back.

Using a snake or jetter without training: It can’t be that hard, right? We train our employees in industry best practices for a reason. Operating a snake or jetter is a complicated operation, and failing to do so properly might damage your pipes, the equipment, or worse, you. What started as a minor drain issue might end up costing you huge in pipe replacement and equipment damage costs, so rely on the experience of Stewart to do the job right.

Hiring a second rate plumber: It seems that everyone has “their guy” who can rush in and save the day when it comes to minor plumbing issues. The problem here, is that if your plumber is putting the best technology in the industry to work for you, you’re not getting the full story. Ensure that your plumber is fully trained and certified to use the equipment that can clear out your drains.

Stewart Plumbing is Memphis’ best bet for drain cleaning solutions. Let us put our training, experience, and industry knowledge to work for you by fixing your drain problems right the first time. Our trucks are fully stocked to handle any issue your home might be facing, so call today. We even have emergency service, and we’re ready 24/7 to help you when you need it. Call Stewart today!

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Ask a Memphis Plumber: What is a Drain and Sewer Clean-Out?

Ask a Memphis Plumber: What is a Drain and Sewer Clean-Out?

  • Drain Cleaning

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First off, just what is a clean-out? When you’re talking plumbing, a clean-out is the part of a pipe that connects to a riser tube which provides an easy-to-access opening at ground level. Most clean-outs are normally installed in basements or in outdoor areas of the property. Clean-outs make regular maintenance on a sewer or drain line possible. It is standard practice to install cleanouts at the edges of property lines because it prevents the necessity of entering private homes and property to correct sewer main stoppages.

What Are The Advantages of a Properly Installed Clean-Out?

  • Once you locate the clean-outs on your property, you’ll never have to wonder where your sewer line runs again. It will be easier to locate next time it needs maintenance or repairs.
  • In the event of heavy rain or a flood, activating your drain or sewer clean-outs can save the interior of your home from similar flooding.
  • They ensure no clog is too deep in the line to stump a skilled drain cleaner. Clean-outs make all clogs accessible to regular sized cables and blades.
  • In the event of a line blockage, the more clean-outs you have, the cheaper the drain cleaning bill is likely to be.
  • Having sewer line clean-outs provides a better vantage point for performing a cleaning of the line right at the source of the problem rather than pulling up your toilet or climbing to the roof and going down the vent.
  • With properly installed clean-outs, the sewer lines in your building or home can be given a visual test at each plumbing fixture in the home to ensure all drains are flowing as desired.
  • Having clean-outs and being knowledgeable about them and their location will ultimately save you a bundle on plumbing bills and help you be proactive in the care of your home’s plumbing system.

Does your home have clean-outs? Do you know where they are? If your answer was ‘no,’ call the drain cleaning experts at Stewart Plumbing for a free, in-home consultation.

 

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Preventative Maintenance vs. Excavation and Repair: Memphis Plumbers Weigh In

Preventative Maintenance vs. Excavation and Repair: Memphis Plumbers Weigh In

  • Drain Cleaning

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Many of our drain cleaning clients have experienced firsthand the value of signing up for a preventative maintenance schedule with our company. When it comes to drains, preventative maintenance basically entails the frequent cabling of your pipelines to prevent a serious clog or backup into the house.

As our technicians come to know your home and its unique plumbing system, the frequency of cabling will be based on that pipe’s past conditions and will always differ from line to line. This is to be expected—some drain lines in your home get used more often than others. We have some customers who know from past experience that their toilet line may need cabling just once a year, while their heavily used kitchen line could benefits from up to four cablings a year.

The problem with ongoing drain maintenance is that if the owner becomes neglectful, the problems can become exponentially worse very fast. When the customer reaches the point where they are scheduled for preventative maintenance two or more times a year, we will usually suggest attaching one of our state-of-the-art cameras to the cable in order to determine the exact nature of the problem and perhaps provide for a more long term solution than cabling.

The client has several factors to consider when looking at longer term drain cleaning solutions:

  1. How much longer does the client intend to live in the home? Use that number of years to factor into maintenance vs. repair cost arguments.
  2. If the client plans to sell in the near future, how much value will they stand to gain by fixing the problematic sewer. Homeowner disclosure laws prohibit keeping these sort of issues secret from prospective buyers.
  3. Does the nature of the drain backups threaten the home itself? Are they so backed up, the lines have become a constant overflow or flood risk?

 

Whether you decide your home needs short term or long term drain cleaning attention, we have the team, experience and equipment to get the job done to your satisfaction. Call Stewart Plumbing today to learn more about our preventative drain maintenance plan.

 

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Why Drain Cleaning is a Two Man Job in Memphis

Why Drain Cleaning is a Two Man Job in Memphis

  • Drain Cleaning

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As anyone who has tried can failed can attest, cabling a sewer is a job for two people. Drain cleaning can be a tricky, involved process that goes much more smoothly and safely if a second set of hands is there to assist.

Why?

  • Cabling in close quarters such as crawl spaces requires two men to move the equipment around without damaging it or your surroundings. The second man can also help with the feeding and retracting cables while the first technician works the actual cabling machine.
  • A two man drain cleaning team also helps for the protection of our client’s property. Unlike some companies out there, the preservation of your property as we found it is our number one priority. If we have to pull a toilet to cable your sewer line, the second tech can prevent the cable from damaging the interior finishes and furnishes of your home.
  • Extra hands on deck also helps with locating hard-to-find underground drain lines. If one tech is having trouble locating the line, the second can help by moving a camera inside the home so the second can focus on using a locating wand outside to find that hidden sewer line.

 

Drain cleaning is an all-hands on deck type project and it is best not left to amateurs. If you have problem drains in your home, do not hesitate to call the experts at Stewart Plumbing today!

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Ask a Memphis Drain Cleaning Expert: When is Excavation Necessary?

Ask a Memphis Drain Cleaning Expert: When is Excavation Necessary?

  • Drain Cleaning

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If you are one of those homeowners that rarely gives a second though to sewer and drain maintenance, tree roots will soon become your worst enemy. Left unchecked, tree roots will be able to overpower your sewer line—quite literally choking it into submission. In many cases, extremely neglected debris will be allowed to accumulate to the point where cabling takes an excessive amount of time to complete.

  • If a half hour’s worth of cabling with a variety of cutting heads to only clearing away debris, but not actually opening the line for business, it’s time to make some important decisions.
  • It often deemed impossible to determine the full extent of the debris—specifically how much a given blockage has been burrowed through by the cabling process and how much is still hindering normal pipe flow.

When we cable a problematic drain lines and continually run up against an obstruction, we will usually draw out our cables and re-attempt the process a few times before we turn our focus to the values of excavation. Now, this is always a last resort for us, but the unfortunate truth is that some drain clogs are too far gone or stubborn to be solved through normal channels.

You Know You Need Excavation If:

  • The cable is pulled out of the line for inspection and mud or clay or a shiny surface is found on the cutting head. When a sewer line does break, rain and groundwater will often wash mud and clay into the line, causing or contributing to an obstruction. This is a common indication that the line itself is collapsed, punctured or otherwise damaged and therefore can likely only be repaired with excavation.
  • When a drain lines collapses, shears or root infestation is too large, the only reliable solution is exaction and partial or complete replacement of the entire line.

Excavation should always be a last resort to the experienced drain cleaner we will strive not to disturb your property unless we determine it is the absolute only way to solve your drain problems. Call Stewart Plumbing today to learn more or to schedule an in-home consultation.

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Memphis Drain Cleaning Experts: Let’s Talk Bio-Clean

Memphis Drain Cleaning Experts: Let’s Talk Bio-Clean

  • Drain Cleaning

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We talk a lot of trash about chemical drain cleaner around these parts. But if we really had to be honest, even though most are hazard to both your home and your health, there is one out there that isn’t so bad. It’s Bio-Clean, a safe, but powerful blend of bacteria and enzymes that are naturally occurring, non-corrosive and non-genetically engineered.

  • It’s Safe: Bio-Clean is not a poison for your drains. It creates no heat, which means no unsettling fuming or boiling coming from your fixtures. Unlike some of the harsher stuff you can buy, it does not attack live tissue or inorganic materials. Bio-Clean goes after organic wastes only. This includes common clog-causing items like grease, hair, food, paper, cotton and standard, run-of-the-mill sewage. All this means Bio-Clean is safe for your people, your pipes and your surroundings. Bio-Clean harmlessly breaks down waste particles into water, carbon dioxide and mineral ash which run easily out of your waste system and into the surrounding environment. As an added bonus, the plant life in your ecosystem will happily gobble up these water and mineral particles.
  • It’s Effective: All it takes is an hour and you’re done! Within an hour after pouring Bio-Clean down the drain, the powerful, clog-fighting bacteria will begin to eat their way into the waste that has accumulated on the sides and top of the drain pipe to cause a blockage. This waste is the bacteria’s natural food—they will actually digest it, allowing it to be flushed from your plumbing system until the blockage is completely gone.
  • It’s Multi-Purpose: Bio-Clean can be used in the following applications:
    • Kitchen sinks
    • Lavatories
    • Bath tubs
    • Showers
    • Floor drains
    • Laundry drains
    • Septic tanks and drain fields
    • Garbage disposals
    • Grease traps
    • Sump pumps and ejector pumps
    • Outhouses
    • R.V. and boat holding tanks
    • Lift station
    • Kitty litter boxes
    • It’s Economical: When you’re comparing the cost of Bio-Clean to the cost of harsher drain cleaning chemicals or, for that matter, professional drain cleaning services, it becomes even more of a no-brainer.
      • Up to 100 drain treatments per 2-lb container
      • 2-lb container effectively treats up to 1,000 gallon septic tank
      • Eliminates the need to clean grease traps
      • Eliminates the need to buy and rely on dangerous chemical substances
      • Eliminates the need to buy urinal cakes

I would go on about the benefits of Bio-Clean but something tells me you’ve already left the computer screen to hit your local hardware for a container of this stuff for yourself. Enjoy the many benefits and be sure to call the drain cleaning experts at Stewart Plumbing if you have any questions!

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Ask a Memphis Plumber: All About Roof Vents

Ask a Memphis Plumber: All About Roof Vents

  • Drain Cleaning

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Q: What are roof vents?

A: Roof vents are special vertical pipes connected to your home plumbing system designed to remove sewage and regulate air pressure within your pipes.

Q: Do I need to have roof vents?

A: Most local building codes designate that every appliance must have a trap. Additionally, in most cases, every fixture must also have a vent. Many people fail to grasp the significance of having proper roof ventilation in place. Without adequate venting,  you could be gambling with the comfort and health of all the home’s occupants.

Q: How do roof vents work?

A: Waste enters your plumbing system at various fixtures such as toilets, sinks and showers. After exiting the fixture, the waste’s first stop is a “trap.”

Q: What is a trap?

A: In plumbing jargon, a trap is a dipped (U,S or J shaped) section of pipe attached to most fixtures that always contains water. The bend in the pipe is meant to stop sewer gases generated by the waste from entering the house.

Q: What is the point of the water in the trap?

A: The water in the plumbing trap creates a tight seal that also serves to prevent sewer gas from passing back up through your drainpipes, reentering the living areas of your home and potentially making you and your family sick.

Q: If no water actually flows through the roof vent, how is it helping my plumbing?

A: Without roof vents, both clean water and waste water would not move properly through your pipes. Roof vents work to preserve neutral air pressure within your drain lines. As a result of this neutral air pressure, gravity can take over and successfully push and pull water and waste through your pipes. Keep in mind all this ventilation only works correctly if your pipes also maintain the appropriate downward slant throughout the system to ensure proper flow.

Q: Can roof vents get clogged?

A: Yes, it isn’t uncommon for us to receive calls about roof vents becoming clogged up. We see this fairly often no matter the season—ice build up in winter, leaf blockages in fall or perhaps even the decomposing carcass of a wild animal in the spring. There are a few different signs that will signal your roof vent is clogged. You may notice one of your drains is functioning extremely slowly or you may see abnormal bubbles in your toilet after you flush it. You could also experience a powerful ‘glugging’ noise as one of your plumbing fixtures drains. Or in a worst case scenario, your traps may empty of water completely and allow foul smelling sewer gas to escape into your home.

More questions about roof vents? The drain cleaning experts at Stewart Plumbing are standing by to answer all your questions and more! Call today!

By Kaitlyn Manktelow

Top 10 Reasons for Drain Line Stoppages in Memphis

Top 10 Reasons for Drain Line Stoppages in Memphis

  • Drain Cleaning

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There are a vast number of things that can go wrong in your drain and sewer lines. And if even, if you are not facing a full-fledged clog or stoppage, the items listed below can also hinder normal, free flowing drain function until properly fixed.

  1. Tree roots are hungry, fast growing things that can easily wrap your drain line in a stranglehold.
  2. Grease going down your kitchen sink may look harmless enough as it circles the drain, but the fact is that grease is one of the worst culprits of clogged drain lines that we encounter.
  3. Inappropriate items being ground up by your kitchen garbage disposal can quickly turn your drain line into an unmanageable mess.
  4. Mud, clay, grass, leaves and other outdoor detritus can become stuck in your drain line in a number of ways. We won’t know for sure until we can do some investigating.
  5. Feminine hygiene products being flushed down the toilet can cause a backup nightmare for even the mightiest of plumbing systems. Bottom line: don’t do it.
  6. Collapsed sewer lines are a tough, costly fix and unfortunately often require excavation.
  7. Incorrectly installed or connected piping is often the source of many problem plumbing systems. The only advice we can offer would be to make sure that this time around you hire a drain cleaning company who knows exactly what they are doing.
  8. Sagging sewer lines slow down the natural downward flow of your drain lines and can cause backup issues.
  9. In some cases, we find the municipal government is at fault for your clog. If they aren’t maintaining their sewer lines, you might be experiencing the ugly face of someone else’s back up.
  10. Line breakages cause debris to pile up at the damage site continuously until the problem is professionally addressed.

No matter what goes wrong with your sewer or drain line, Stewart Plumbing is here to help. Call today—our experts are standing by!

By Kaitlyn Manktelow