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Top 10 Drain & Sewer Questions Answered


The sewer line is considered one of the most important part of the sewer and septic system in any home, school or commercial building. Properly taking care of the sewer line and septic system is very important.

Just some routine general maintenance can save thousands of dollars in expensive repairs that won’t be needed if you just take care of the sewer line the right way. One common example of the way most people, businesses, schools and even hospitals don’t take care of their sewer lines and septic is the “slow drain”. We have all seen slow drains in our bathrooms, in public buildings and so on.

The one day you see the “out of order sign” on the bathroom and its just too late. This could have been all avoided if the sewer line was properly cleaned and maintained often instead of just waiting until it completely fails. So we have decided to list the most commonly asked sewer and drain questions with some answers. Always remember that the the sewer and septic system is a very important part of the plumbing system and it needs to be taken care of.
RIDGID K7500 Sewer & Drain Machine

What is a sewer line house trap?

The sewer line house trap is a trap that is at the “end of the line”. This trap is the first thing that is attached to the sewer line once it come through the house. The house trap is usually made out of cast iron and will be made for 4″ cast iron pipe. The house trap also has two clean-outs built into it, each side of the house trap has its own clean-out.

What can you put down your drain to unfreeze sewers?

There is a special machine called a sewer jetta that can be hooked up to hot water and then can be inserted in your drain to help defrost and melt the ice. This of course would be if you could not access the pipes. Now if you have a basement or a crawl space you could always learn how to unfreeze your pipes.

What is the purpose of a trap on a sewer line trap into a residential house?

Back in the old days the house trap was used to stop rodents from entering the sewer lines. In today’s times is more for keeping the sewer smell down.

What liquid can i use to unclog drain in kitchen pipe?

You can first try to running some hot water into the drain , and then if that doesn’t work you could try to use some liquid plumber. If both of those methods fail you will need to call a plumber or get a snake.

What liquid drain cleaner do plumbers use?

Licensed plumbers generally don’t use any drain cleaners because they have all the tools and drain cleaning machines on their trucks, so no liquid drain cleaner is required.

What is a clean out plug and where is it located?

The clean out plug is located on a clean-out fitting. Clean out fittings include, house traps, p-traps, clean-out tees and also end of the line clean outs. If you want to remove the clean out plug just simply turn it counter clockwise.

How do I repair a sewer line?

Depending on what type of sewer line you have will determine how you repair the sewer line, If you have a PVC sewer line you would be able to repair it will PVC fittings. If your sewer like is made from clay pipe or ductile sewer pipe you will have to use another method to repair this type of pipe. It is always best to try to match the replacement material with the original material that was used on the sewer line, meaning you don’t want to go from pvc to iron to PVC, that is just to sloppy.

How to I install a sewer line?

Sewer lines have to be pitched downhill for the septic system to properly work. To install a sewer line you will have to connect the sewer pipe that you bought that matches the plumbing code to the house and then to either the septic tank or the city street hook up.

How to replace a clay sewer line?

The way to replace a clay sewer line would be to find out where it hooks to the house or building and also where the other end hooks to, which will be a septic tank or city sewer system. Once you have located where both ends tie in you can make plans to replace that sewer line with a new one. You will need heavy equipment to trench the new sewer line and to help you lay the pipe.

How To fix a back pitched sewer line?

If you have been told that your sewer line is “back pitched” or that you have a back pitched sewer line that means that your sewer line is not pitched the right way and needs to be reversed. The way to correct a back pitched sewer line is to use a level and readjust the pitch so that the water will flow downhill towards the septic tank or the city sewer hook up.


  1. what is the inches of pitch per foot on a sewer line……believe it’s 1/4 inch per foot but not sure????? Thanks

  2. Placing a sewer line vs a lift station. It is my understanding to much pitch as detrimental as not enough. My situation is the first 11 feet could go at up to 1/2 inch per foot…..the next 10 feet virtually flat dumping into existing pipe which appears to be 1/4 per foot. My feeling is it’s better to go with what I have then install a lift station. What Think??? Thanks

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