HELP! There's sewage in my basement. Snaking the sewer line - Part 2

11:09 AM

Sewer water on the floor :(

If you read blogs like I read blogs there is a LOT of advice/input and ideas on how to do everything!  Sometimes things work out GREAT!  Sometimes not.  (See also Pinterest

Last week I wrote a lengthy blog about snaking our sewer drain.  My husband and I were feeling quite triumphant.  This, dear reader, is the rest of the story!

Our sewer snake
So we snaked the sewer line and everything was fine for about a day.  Maybe 2.   Then water reappeared on the basement floor.  We snaked the line again and clean and disinfected everything.  Again, the line was fine for a day or 2.  Then, more water on the floor.  One morning after our daily morning routine we discover sewage in our basement – AGAIN!

Flushing the sewer line with a garden hose

I’d had enough.  The snaking was easy enough.  It’s the clean up that was a beast!  Sure we could have rented a more powerful snake and snaked the line but honestly I just couldn’t face another day of cleaning if our efforts didn’t work.  I waved a white flag and called in a professional!

Enter Roto Rooter!

My hero!!!!
The plumber showed up about 2 hours after I called and TOTALLY saved the day.  He used a powerful electric snake to clear the sewer line clearing up the problem once and for all.  I know now that had we rented an electric snake we could have done this job ourselves, but truth be told I was just plain tired of the DIY route and needed to be done with this project!

I DIY because it’s fun and usually saves money.  Snaking and cleaning this mess had ceased being fun about 3 snaking and cleanings ago. 

Disinfecting my boots in bleach water

Following my own advice I made the plumber my teacher.  While staying out of the way and trying hard not to be a pain in the neck, I asked LOTS of questions.  I gathered information that I can use if this problem comes up again. 

Lessons from the plumber:
Turns out my dear husband and I were breaking up what must have been a sizable clog of toys and gunk, only to have it reassemble itself further down the sewer line.  We’d break up the clog and push it along.  The problem is that we failed to break up the garbage down enough.  We also failed to push it completely into the street.  The major clog was found 12 feet into the line.  We needed to push it about 50 feet.  Using a powerful electric snake the plumber destroyed the clog and pushed it 56 feet.  The assembled mess was broken up enough to flow from our sewer line into the main sewer line that runs down our street.

ALSO, while the plumber was there he fixed every little plumbing item on my “to do” list.  For an additional $40 he cut and capped a bunch of old water lines and checked out a small leak.

Checking for leaks!

We clean and disinfected the basement AGAIN.  This time for good - I hope!

Price of the plumbers visit: $315.  Price of knowing that I would wake up to a dry sewage free basement – PRICELESS!!!

The other advantage of having a professional is knowing that his work comes with a (conditional) guarantee.  If this problem occurs again within the next 30 days, he comes back at no additional cost to me!

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  1. Plumbing-related problems, in my opinion, can be really deceiving. It can look simple sometimes, even if it’s not. I’m glad that you finally called a professional to help you. At least you’re now assured that the problem has been dealt with and - hopefully - solved and so as with the other line of pipes in your house.

    Leeanne @

  2. Keep in mind that clearing a main line stoppage is not an easy task. It may be easier to call a professional plumber in this situation. Consider calling around to compare the price of renting the machine, plus your time, versus hiring a plumber.


  3. It’s good that you gave in and decided to call a professional plumber to repair your sewage drain. At the very least, he was able to address the main problem, and fix it for good. It can be quite frustrating if your efforts get wasted because the problem keeps coming back after some time.

    German Zollinger @ Total Clean Equipment

  4. The mere thought of cleaning up the sewage backup in your basement is quite unsettling. The sewage backup often contains many contaminants which can pose to be a health hazard for you.