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Question DetailsAsked on 9/23/2015

Can a broken snake be removed from a sewage line?

When a sewage company used a jet sprayer (special name forget it now) to clean my sewage drains, they gave me a "free" camera inspection. Well, the gentleman who did it found a broken snake pretty far in... well outside my home floors....

The next day his boss came to try and sell me a repair to the sewage line under my home for $8000... that was breaking my basement slab and replacing the pipe under the basement only (telling me he knew how to get my homeowner insurance to pay for it)... but never said anything about the snake stuck a lot farther out. I passed on the service because I though while he was "fixing that" he would THEN charge me more to fix the rest of it. I have a two year warranty on clogging again after getting the jet spray cleaning.

So a simple question of can this broken snake be removed without replacing my entire sewage line. I have clogged 2x since I owned the home in 10 years.

Thanks for your reply.

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Depends on how well it is stuck. If the camera got a good view of its length, should have been able to tell if it was wrapped up hard in tree roots or a broken piece of pipe (though in that case you would still ahve to dig to repair the pipe, so just take out at that time), or just broke off and was lying there.


Unless it appeared to be well snagged, I would try to go in at the nearest access point and grab it with a spiral retriever hook on a sewer router and pull it out. In larger cities, some commercial sewer cleaning companies have camera-head retrieval grapples that can actually be maneuvered ot grab onto obstruction in a sewer and pull them out - normally used for brush and shopping cart and similar obstructions in storm sewers.


Other alternative (hopefully the camera run guy gave you the distance down the line to the snake from some established point like a cleanout or such) is to dig the line up and cut it open to remove the snake, then repair the line. For shallow burial depth can typically run around the $500 range give or take, up to about twice that (or even more in rare cases) if very deep burial in a deep winter frost penetration zone or if there are surface obstructions in the way.


Sewer Cleaning or Plumbing would be your normal Search the List vendor categories for these two options, respectively.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD




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