When Slow Drains Aren’t Caused by Clogs
We all value our drains, especially when they work properly. It can be a real hassle when it takes a long time for water to drain down your shower, bathtub or sink. Not only that, but a slow-moving drain can leave an unsightly film once it finally drains, and you find yourself constantly cleaning the area around the drain, sometimes several times a day.
Drains are often sluggish because of an obstruction, such as hair, sludge buildup, or tree roots, but that is not always the case. Sometimes the problem can be resolved by climbing on to the top of the roof and clearing the plumbing vents.
Plumbing vents are located on the top of people’s homes. If the vent gets blocked by something such as leaves, a nest, or even an animal carcass, air can’t flow into the drains properly. The rushing water creates a vacuum that can slow down the draining process, or stop it altogether.
Complicating matters even more, the vacuum can be so strong that it pulls water out of toilet bowls and P-traps, which in effect allows toxic sewer gases to seep into your home. The good news is that this can be prevented by routinely cleaning the plumbing vents.
Climbing On Top of the Roof
In order to clean out your plumbing vents, you’ll need a ladder that extends 3 feet above the roofline, you want to brace the ladder so it doesn’t slide away, and you’ll need a rope for safety, a screwdriver, and a garden hose with an adjustable nozzle.
If your plumbing vent is sealed with a cap, you’ll need the screwdriver so you can unscrew it. Once the cap is removed, you use the garden hose to clear the vent. Before you begin though, inspect the vent for leaves, debris, and other obstructions, which have a tendency to collect invents.
You can immediately improve the air circulation by removing any leaves and debris that have collected in the vent. Once you’ve done that, set the nozzle so it’s on high or “jet” and shoot the water down the line.
If it’s been a long time since the vent was cleaned and there’s a large blockage, or if a bird or an animal climbed down the vent and died, the water could flow back out. If that happens, you’ll need a 10 to 20-foot plumbing snake to clear out the vent.
If you are not comfortable climbing on your roof to clean out the plumbing vents, or if you would simply prefer to have a professional take care of it, contact a Kansas City plumber from A-1 Sewer & Septic Service Inc. to get the job done right!