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framelady
Slow Indoor Drains

I live in an 1892 Shingle style house in upstate New York. My claw foot tub has always been slow to drain because of an angle the pipe takes in the bathroom. But lately the bathroom sink and the kitchen sink have also gotten very slow to drain. A fourth sink in the house, a small one in the downstairs bathroom that is very close to the main sewer pipe, is fine. So I am not sure that it is the main sewer pipe that is the problem. I would appreciate suggestions about what to do to repair this problem. I understand that it is not wise to use chemical methods like Draino on old pipes. Thank you, Mary Webster

Blue RidgeParkway
Re: Slow Indoor Drains

Frozen vent, auxiliary vent or snow/ice covering on the outside can slow down drainage.

framelady
Re: Slow Indoor Drains

Blue Ridge Parkway, Thanks for your reply, but I don't believe that these pipes are frozen. Some of these pipes are pretty old and must have a lot of sludge buildup inside them. I am wondering what the solution to that problem is. All advice welcome. Thanks, Mary

Blue RidgeParkway
Re: Slow Indoor Drains

Manually snake the drains after you've first assured the traps aren't clogged is one method.

Older plumbing sometimes employed drum traps or bell traps on fixtures such as old claw foot tubs. Sometimes access to these traps can be found behind access panels or doors either in walls or ceilings below. There may or many not be various locations in the DWV where "cleanouts" are located. Older homes sometimes (older home more likely depending on if originally equiped with "plumbing" or if retrofit) have what is called a house trap on the main sewer. Galvanized waste plumbing lines may be rusted or corroded.

Plumbers or "drain clearing services" can do this for you also. Depending on the materials, age, design, of your plumbing system using chemical methods for drain clearing usually should be avoided if vintage elements; and aggressive power snaking or bladed drain clearing can be risky - gentle is usually the rule with vintage plumbing (for example lead closet bends, etc.).

framelady
Re: Slow Indoor Drains

Many thanks Blue Ridge Parkway. You've given me lots to think about. I appreciate it. All the best, Mary

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