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Old 10-04-2011, 07:33 PM   #1
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Question - RE: Clogged toilets/showers


Hi all,

I have kind of a backwards question and it may seem strange, but I'm hoping a professional can give me some information to keep me out of trouble.

I am staying with a person and a couple of days ago the toilets suddenly wouldn't flush (would go all the way to the swirl, but not flush) and the showers stopped draining. We're talking 2 full bathrooms (2 toilets, 2 showers that stopped up at the same time).

Fast forward to today, the owner of the home (a general contractor) rented a snake and started outside. Still didn't do the trick. Then he came in and removed the toilet from the bathroom I use. He found, with the snake, maybe 6 or so paper towels and became very angry at me telling me the expense and time was my fault because I didn't know not to flush paper towels. He even said he knew it was me because there was a roll in the bathroom. Well, I've always kept a roll in the bathroom (since I've been here - 2 months or so) for when I clean. I explained that just because they was a roll in the bathroom that it couldn't be pinned on me.

His 4 year old granddaughter was also here a couple of days ago (a day I think before the clog) and she was in the bathroom. I asked him if it's possible she did it, being a kid who doesn't know any better? I even went as far as to tell him I don't even flush "flushable" sanitary products and of course he didn't find any of those, because I don't do it.

Everything I'm reading online says that if both toilets and showers were clogged, it was most like a street blockage of some sort. He didn't believe it.

Also from what I'm reading online, just because the snake didn't "pull anything out" from the street doesn't mean it didn't knock it loose and then slowly drained as he was removing the toilet inside. I guess what I mean there is just because he found a minimal amount of paper towels and then when he snaked again it worked, is it possible he knocked loose whatever was in the main line and the paper towels really weren't the culprit?

So, I guess I'm asking for a personal favor to tell me if I'm right to defend myself here. I don't "think" he wants to blame me, but it was fairly direct and a lot of force behind the blame I guess you could say.

Sincerely,
Dumbfounded and in trouble!

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Old 10-04-2011, 08:06 PM   #2
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Question - RE: Clogged toilets/showers


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Originally Posted by bmanning View Post
I even went as far as to tell him I don't even flush "flushable" sanitary products and of course he didn't find any of those, because I don't do it.

So, I guess I'm asking for a personal favor to tell me if I'm right to defend myself here.
So, you don't really spell it out. Did you flush paper towels or not?

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Old 10-04-2011, 08:15 PM   #3
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Question - RE: Clogged toilets/showers


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So, you don't really spell it out. Did you flush paper towels or not?
No, I didn't. He is assuming I did because there was a roll in the bathroom which I used for cleaning. My best guess is his 4 yo granddaughter did if that was even the cause. Like I said, it was not a big amount and I am not seeing where even if I did (I didn't) or even if that was the cause as to why it would clog both toilets and showers.

So, my conclusion or question rather was: Is it feasible it could clog all toilets and showers if only a few paper towels? Or is it better deduced to say that there was a blockage outside that got pushed through when he snaked?

Also, didn't mention. He said he had to have the lines snaked from time to time and the last time was 10 years ago.

Thank you all for reading. He is back home now so I will keep refreshing and waiting so I can talk to him and show him the findings.
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Old 10-04-2011, 10:34 PM   #4
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Question - RE: Clogged toilets/showers


From my vast experience of unclogging things......paper towels clog the toilet 99% of the time...not the pipes. Not saying it couldn't happen, but every experience I have had with a paer towel clog as right in the toilet itself. Now if the plumbing pipes are old and / or restricted, that could certainly assist in making the paper towels create a clog in the pipe. (still unlikely)
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Old 10-04-2011, 10:49 PM   #5
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Question - RE: Clogged toilets/showers


Chances are the paper did not cause the blockage. They only contributed to the existing problem. Running the cable outside the house did not appear to open the blockage. He had to pull a toilet which indicates the problem was inside the building. It could have been a toothbrush, small bottle, comb, pipe belly, offset joint, etc. Can't pin it on paper towels that easily. However, as you know, it is not good practice to flush stuff like that.
Short story- a construction cleaner was wiping down a toilet I had put in. She flushed her cleaning rag on accident. The rag made it downstream about 50' before it hung up on a chunk of concrete the slab guys dumped down my clean out when they accidently knocked the top off of 4 months prior(they never told me) while pouring the floor. If it wasn't for the couple of handfuls of cured concrete in the pipe(less then 50% blockage) the rag would of made it to the city sewer. Don't ask me how I got the concrete out
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