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Discussion Starter #1
okay so i had very low hot water pressure to the bathtub, and only slightly lower pressure at the sink. had a friend who does plumbing over and he looked at the basement pipes, first he replaced the ball valve for the hot line, that changed nothing, then he pulled the galvanized elbow and found it was almost completely clogged, he replaced that elbow, and also tried clearing any debris in the down pipe connecting to the elbow, only about 15 inches up. after he did this, now there is NO HOT water pressure and he has no ideas.

1st, why would there be at least a little water before and NOTHING afterwards!


2nd im sure there are other elbows, any ideas of how to clean them out without ripping out the walls and ceilings? (old plaster and lath) i move in to this place in 1 month.
 

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Galvanized pipeing is notorious for clogging over time. If he found one elbow clogged, the whole system is likely clogged and the only solution is to replace the galvanized pipes. By working on those pipes, debris has been distrubed and stopped up at some choke point.
 

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Just Bill is exactly right. Folks house had the same problem. We used to disconnect the pipes at the shower and in the basement and pour soda down them to eat the corrosion out of them...but they too eventually corroded shut totally. Finally replumbed the whole house with copper.
 

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Totally agree with the previous posts. One fitting in a galvanized system isnt clogged....its all of them to some degree. The permanent solution is to get that galvanized piping out of there.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
i truly need a temporary solution, for now, isnt there a chemical that will help to disolve the calcium/rust buildups, I'm working on a very limited budget, and moving in in 28 days, we will NEED the shower for obvious reasons.

the reason why removing the galvanized pipe at this time is out of the question is because this is an old house, plaster and wood lath, the pipe in question does a 90 degree under the tub down the length of it, then another 90 degree to the basement. i do not have the time nor the money nor the man power right now to take on such a task.


if no chemical solution, i may just run a new line with flexible copper or pex straight through the floor, against the wall and 90 it at the ceiling then up to the bathroom. I really only need this temp fix for about a year, at which point i will be able to rip the whole house out and run new plumbing and electric(currently knob and tube in 95% of the place)
 

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I have galvanized up to my 2nd floor bath in the house I just bought. It still flows well (miracle!). When I remodel the bathroom I'll be running pex up the old utility shaft. I too have an inaccessible 90 bend under the hallway floor/wall area. Otherwise, if disconnected at the top and bottom, I always wondered if a guy could pour CLR thru them to eat the corrosion. Never tried it, but it's sposed to eat rust/lime/calcium deposits from hard water. Maybe worth a shot? Be careful...might soak into the stuff and release slowly. No doubt it's poisonous. But they use it to clean out coffee pots, so... More research needed.
 

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he replaced that elbow, and also tried clearing any debris in the down pipe connecting to the elbow, only about 15 inches up.
THAT was the big mistake and not the smartest thing to do as you now know. There is an outside chance that the debris he dislodged has collected at the faucet IF it has a screen on it. If this is the case you may be able to remove the screen and flush the pipes after that.

There is no "chemical fix" for this and you have no options other than to replace the entire galvanized line if clearing the screen doesn't work.:)
 
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