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When someone says, “you never know what’s in those drains,” they’re not kidding. In the really big drains, city sewers, everything from crocodiles to balls of fat weighing over a ton have been found, but fortunately, we’re mostly cleaning residential drains, so our surprises are less dramatic. Still, most people think of drains as a kind of “out of sight, out of mind” thing and what they flush or send down the drain or garbage disposal can be both interesting and alarming. Sometimes it’s a fairly routine clog, like rice, that not enough people know is more than it seems. Rice and pasta, along with other materials that absorb a lot of water, can expand in the pipes and create all sorts of trouble. This is one of the many reasons why a regular drain cleaning service is a good idea for your home: you really never know what’s down there. At Metro Plumbing, Heating, and Air, serving the Chattanooga, TN area, it is our pleasure to use our skills and experience to give your drain pipes a thorough, careful cleaning, flushing out whatever has found a home in there over the past year or so, or if you’ve never had a drain cleaning service, over many decades. Chances are, you won’t need to call our emergency plumbing service as much once your pipes are flowing freely since clogs won’t be waiting for that last bit of something to finish blocking the pipe.
When Your Pipes Don’t Slope Right, They Don’t Drain Right
Your drain pipes are designed to carry solid waste as well as wastewater, and so they have to have the right slope to keep the waste and water flowing together. Too much tilt and the water zips away leaving clogs of waste to accumulate. Too little tilt, and once the flush or sink emptying is done, there’s not enough pull of gravity to bring the last bit down. It sits in the pipe, the water evaporates, and another clog starts to form. Plumbing codes generally specify drain pipe slope, and most plumbers have encountered trouble where drains didn’t clear properly because of errors in construction, but you can just imagine how many people, installing drain pipes, say: “there, nice and level,” not knowing the trouble they’ve just created for drain cleaning services in the future. Of course, this applies to pipes that run horizontally inside your walls and floors, there are other challenges for the pipes under your sinks and toilets, and in the drain lines vertically traversing from floor to floor. Here is a good example, though, of how subtle problems you wouldn’t expect can cause all kinds of trouble in your plumbing. We’re glad to offer an expert drain cleaning service and follow-up plumbing services if needed.
Plumbing Vents, the Hidden Component of Your Drain System
Upon the roof, your plumbing system extends as a system of vents that draw in air and allow sewer gas to escape. Problems with these vents are actually dangerous, as they can lead to wastewater backup into your home from drains and toilets below, as well as the accumulation of dangerous sewer gases in your living spaces. If your drain cleaning service identifies a potential plumbing vent problem, it’s best to get a plumber to investigate the situation right away. What could be going on up there is the end of the vent is clogged or blocked, by twigs and plastic bags blown in by storms or material gathered for nesting by a bird or small animal. Once the pipe is partially blocked, you’ll have flow problems below and hear gurgling sounds. When it’s fully blocked, you’ll have sinks and toilets that won’t drain, and even back up. In the worst case, the backup could travel into the plumbing vent system, which can be quite expensive to fix.
A Bit of Plumbing Physics to Explain Your Plumbing Vents
The reason for the apparent clogs down below when a plumbing vent is covered up above is a principle of physics. Draining water and waste usually pulls in air to replace itself as it descends down your pipes. This is something like a siphoning effect, where flowing water in a tube pulls more with it. If you put your finger over the intake end of a siphon, what happens? The water doesn’t flow anymore, it’s stuck in the tube. When you release your finger, it continues. So it is with the plumbing vents, when they don’t let in air, your drains can’t drain, and will eventually back up instead. It’s important that your drain cleaning service understands this potential problem, since a clogged drain or backing up sink usually looks like it can be cleared by removing clogs below but sometimes it’s actually a matter of what’s above.
Keeping Your Drains Clean and Inspected Can Avoid Unexpected Plumbing Problems
Our expert plumbers and technicians perform drain cleaning service to reduce the problems in your home’s plumbing, especially clogs, and to keep any emergency plumber visits for clogged drains simpler, as the problem is more likely local to the fixture, such as a toy down the toilet or rice down the kitchen sink. When we use video inspection to locate and clear distant clogs, we also have a chance to show you the condition of your pipes for future reference.
Your Skillful, Experienced Chattanooga, TN Drain Cleaning Service: Metro Plumbing, Heating, and Air
Our drain cleaning service is the one to call for thorough results even if your drains haven’t been cleaned professionally in forever. We take good care of your pipes, even with our powerful clog removal techniques, and use video to inspect the pipes and locate clogs that need attention. Look to us for professional sewer inspections and service as well. Give us at Metro Plumbing, Heating & Air a call and find out all that our Chattanooga, TN plumbers can do to keep your home’s drains flowing