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Old 03-21-2012, 01:52 AM   #1
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Just upgraded the plumbing in my house (well, my friend the contractor did, I played lackey) from a mix of plastic stuff, copper and galvanized pipe to pex. One of the main reasons for doing so was because the water pressure from all sink and tub faucets were so weak. Surprisingly the upgrade didn't improve much, namely the bathroom cold water and tub hot water are weaker and the kitchen faucet now gets no water at all. I assume it's the sink/tub water lines or the faucets got re-clogged with sediment because of better pressure.

How do I unclog faucets? If that doesn't work, how do I unclog water lines that are all pex (i.e., everything's clamped, not threaded)?


P.S. - My friend just left weary and drained from putting in 13 hours straight to finish this upgrade - I'd hate to nag him about this problem especially since I may be able to do this part myself.

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Old 03-21-2012, 05:35 AM   #2
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


More details. please---

Did you check the incoming pressure at the meter before you repiped?

Was all piping replaced right up to the fixtures or did you leave some of the old stuff inside the walls?

Opening up and restoring faucets and mixer valves is a case by case proposition---we need to know what kind of faucet you have , to advise you---

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Old 03-21-2012, 06:06 AM   #3
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Based on your description, I believe that Mike has you on the right track, in that you will probably need to provide more details, and that the following are not primary contributors to the problems, but check that all of the your valves under the sinks, etc. are fully opened, and then remove, clean, and reinstall the aerators on the affected faucets; the aerators are going to need to be cleaned sooner or later, so may as well do it sooner, and get them out of the equation; a toothpick works well for the heavy stuff, then soak in vinegar and water.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:11 AM   #4
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Did you get rid of all the galvanized pipe??? If not, that could be the problem. But what one of the others suggested, check the incoming pressure, it should be 50-75#. Lower and you have what you describe, higher requires a pressure regulator or you will have leaks all over the place.
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Old 03-22-2012, 01:13 PM   #5
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Thanks everyone for your replies. I slightly solved the problems; all the water lines leading to the fixtures are clear and get good pressure and its the faucets/fixtures that are clogged. Bought a couple of nipples, gender changers and reducers to hook the garden hose from the utility sink faucets in the basement (always has great flow/pressure) to the faucets in the kitchen and bathroom. This successfully blew the sediment and crap out of the cold line in the bathroom faucet and now both hot and cold pressure is even and good. This method didn't work in the kitchen faucet however as whatever sediment is in there is stubborn and won't blow out - I'll have to buy a new faucet or borrow a air compressor to get it out. As for the bathtub fixtures, the water lines hasn't been fully replaced yet so that's why its water pressure is wonky.

I measured the pressure from all around the house (outside spickets and indoor faucets) and got 49 PSI. Couldn't find the average PSI for this city/region so I don't know if 49 is good.

Anyhoo, thanks everyone!
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:15 PM   #6
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Quote:
Originally Posted by anuvanoob View Post
Bought a couple of nipples, gender changers and reducers to hook the garden hose from the utility sink faucets in the basement (always has great flow/pressure) to the faucets in the kitchen and bathroom. This successfully blew the sediment and crap out of the cold line in the bathroom faucet and now both hot and cold pressure is even and good.
Could you explain the exact procedure you used to blow the sediment out of the cold water lines? I would like to learn how to do that.

Thanks,
HRG
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Old 03-25-2012, 12:47 AM   #7
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


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Could you explain the exact procedure you used to blow the sediment out of the cold water lines? I would like to learn how to do that.

Thanks,
HRG
I hooked up one end of a 50 foot garden hose (3/4" female) to the utility sink faucet (3/4" male) in the basement. On the other end of that hose (3/4" male) I screwed on what essentially is a reducer (3/4" female to 1/2" female) and screwed that onto my kitchen faucet (1/2" male). My bathroom sink faucet was the opposite gender of my kitchen so I just had to screw on a 1/2" nipple to the reducer that was currently on there.

Your faucet size may differ so be sure you which size it is before buying fittings.

Here's the exact items I purchased at Home Depot:

Watts A-660, GH1 - Swivel Hose Adapter, 3/4" FH x 1/2" FIP (my reducer)
Watts A-833, 122 - Pipe Hex Nipple, 1/2" MIP

Last edited by anuvanoob; 03-25-2012 at 12:51 AM.
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Old 03-25-2012, 03:01 AM   #8
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Quote:
Originally Posted by anuvanoob View Post
I hooked up one end of a 50 foot garden hose (3/4" female) to the utility sink faucet (3/4" male) in the basement. On the other end of that hose (3/4" male) I screwed on what essentially is a reducer (3/4" female to 1/2" female) and screwed that onto my kitchen faucet (1/2" male). My bathroom sink faucet was the opposite gender of my kitchen so I just had to screw on a 1/2" nipple to the reducer that was currently on there.

Your faucet size may differ so be sure you which size it is before buying fittings.

Here's the exact items I purchased at Home Depot:

Watts A-660, GH1 - Swivel Hose Adapter, 3/4" FH x 1/2" FIP (my reducer)
Watts A-833, 122 - Pipe Hex Nipple, 1/2" MIP
Understand now how you connected your utility sink faucet to your kitchen sink faucet. How did the water from the utility sink faucet blow into the kitchen sink faucet? And when it did, where did the sediment go?

Thanks,
HRG
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Old 03-25-2012, 05:46 PM   #9
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


I unscrewed the water lines from the fixture connected, turned on the fixture's cold water and out came the sediment (into a pitcher I put underneath it).
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Old 03-25-2012, 05:49 PM   #10
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


I couldn't unclogg the kitchen fixture with this method, only the bathroom sink fixture. Whatever was clogging the kitchen fixture is stubborn as hell. My friend is going to try to blow it out with his compressor later.
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Old 03-25-2012, 06:10 PM   #11
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How do I unclog water lines, faucets?


Quote:
Originally Posted by anuvanoob View Post
I unscrewed the water lines from the fixture connected, turned on the fixture's cold water and out came the sediment (into a pitcher I put underneath it).
Understand now. Thanks for the follow up.
HRG

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