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Frozen sewer line


 
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circus
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 4:11 am    Post subject: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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tomturkey
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 5:54 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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showcrop
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 5:54 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote


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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NoNewParts
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 6:17 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Circus wrote:
(quoted from post at 09:11:48 01/31/14) 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!


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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circus
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 6:48 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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PJH
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 7:27 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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Lou from Wi.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 9:32 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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farmerwithmutt
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 9:44 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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dpendzic
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 11:41 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I did exactly the same thing to mine when it froze up.
 
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Ted in NE-OH
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 12:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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Billy NY
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 1:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2014 5:39 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote


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
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2014 6:23 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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ss55
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2014 10:15 am    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Would the sugars in molasses feed the bacteria?
 
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rodm1
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2014 3:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Frozen sewer line Reply to specific post Reply with quote

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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