Monday, March 21, 2011

WORST game of Whack-A-Mole. ever.

Let me first say.  I ABHOR basketball.  I don't care who is playing or why they are playing.  I don' t care to watch 8+ games a day.

Saturday.  One of the kids notices there is water in the backyard.  Upon inspection by Heather it is determined that sewage is backing up out of the clear-out pipe.   So, the clear-out pipe is what you snake when you have a clog......but what do you snake when the clear-out pipe is clogged??

Where are the men?

My clear-out pipe did not have a cap on it because one of our dogs ate it about 10 years ago.  I  mention this because this is a WONDERFUL thing.  Had I had a cap on there the sewage would have had no where else to go but back up into the house.  Oh wouldn't that have been a pleasure!  Yeah, NO.

Where are the men?

First plan of attack was to send the hose down with a high-pressure nozzle on it to see if we could dislodge the clog.  No such luck.  Some things came up......this is where the title to the post came from.  My oldest son was outside watching.  Yes, watching.  It was dark and he turned on his cell phone flashlight.  At one point I told him to point it back on Heather as she was having to grab "things" coming up out of the pipe so they did not go back down.  That's when Jarrett said, " Worst game of whack-a-mole ever!".   I should probably  mention now the protective rubber gloves Heather is wearing.

Where are the men?

So, dark, raining, still clogged.  We gave up for the night.

Sunday.  I make a trip to Home Depot.  Mike, the son-in-law, goes grocery shopping.  Husband cooks his famous french toast and bacon for breakfast. I then run to another son's house to pick up a small hand auger that he has.  Try the auger in both toilets. Nothing.  Put a cap on the clear-out pipe thinking maybe just a little back pressure will flush out the clog.  Nope. This is getting serious.  We are nearing "call the plumber" stage.
I go to Home Depot, again, and rent a very large electric 100 foot sewer snake.  Heather and I wrestle it into the back yard and get started.  God bless her.  She's the one standing in the muck feeding the snake into the pipe.  I'm standing on dry ground about 4 feet away working the power on the snake machine.  I did occasionally have to do the following things for her....pull her pants up for her.  Push her hair out of her face.  Get a piece of hair out of her mouth.  Let her scratch her face against my shoulder. etc.

Where are the men?

We did get a bit of supervision (from the men) after a few attempts to snake the pipe.  After about 30 minutes or so, and 50 feet of snake,  Heather finally broke through the clog.

I won't describe it.  Trust me and just be thankful for that.

So, total $ spent today to unclog the main drain from the house - $65.   No clue what a plumber would have charged but I'm sure it would have been much more.

I'm very proud to have a daughter who takes after me and isn't afraid to fix things herself.  I've learned a lot of stuff doing things like this as they came up.  I've replaced thermostats on clothes dryers (easy).  I've replaced spark plugs and wires on a Miata, I removed and replaced an alternator on my son's old truck.  I can change a tire.  I can change my oil & filter (if I wanted to). etc.

So you men can have your basketball March Madness or whatever, but don't holler at us if we don't put your tools up exactly how we found them.  The toilets flush and that is what's important here.

We defeated the Whack-A-Mole!

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