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Question DetailsAsked on 2/13/2017

What could be causing my toilet to randomly gurgle, when tub drains, then over flowed when flushed

Last week we had the vent in the kitchen pipes replaced cause of gurgling when the toilet would flush, didn't have much of a problem after until last night, the tub wasn't draining and then the toilet was used and flushed, then over flowed, . called our maitence guy and he'll be out today sometime, but this moring getting my kid ready for school the toilet got flushed and everything seems to be working fine again....
We live in a mobile home park, was told if it was the septic system then people further down would be having problems, these problems also started about the same time they put a new mobile home in next to us.

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Answered 3 years ago by Member Services


The gurgling means that water is backing up in the drain/sewer lines - the gurgling is the air being displaced in the line as it fills with liquid, coming out at whatever trap in the line has the least pressure on it. Also means the toilet and probably tub does not have proper vent piping to it (which is not at all uncommon) because that air should be going up the vent pipe.

Could be a partial blockage in the lines, could be they screwed up connecting the adjacent mobile home to the line, could be the septic system is overfull or backing up and only backing to your point intermittently depending probably on the amount of recent usage from all the homes combined.

I would ask neighbors if they are having troubles (could put the burden on the mobile home park owner) - otherwise I would have a Sewer and Drain cleaning guy out and see if he will try a camera run BEFORE running a router or cleaning jet through the lines, to see if he can see a problem. Then, assuming a problem is seen, then route or jet it out, then reinspect with the camera (and I would have the trailer park manager there at that time to see it) if there was any indication of a piping issues - bad piping installation, broken piping, etc.

From your sporadic symptoms, could also be that they used a tee rather than a sanitary wye or sanitary tee to tie into the line from the new trailer, so some of their waste is discharging back up into your part of the line - which then flushes out sometimes, builds up other times depending on flow from your trailer and whether the downflow line is full of water or not. Here are images of the two types - the 90 degree tee should NOT be used on a sewer line, both the other two sweep types in the home depot link (first two pictures there) are OK -

The problem with the first one is it does not force the flow to go downstream - the flow (and solids) can go both ways in the usually almost flat-lying sewer line, causing a dam in your line upstream of the fitting. You see a lot of these put in because they are cheaper - save a few bucks here, a few bucks there, it all adds up to contractors out for the bucks rather than to do a professional, quality job.

It is also possible a camera run will see a buildup of dirt/rocks in the line that got in there when they cut the line to hook up the new trailer - causing damming of solids in the pipe.

You can see a lot of other similar questions about drains gurgling and backing up in the Home > Plumbing and Home > Sewer links in Browse Projects, at lower left - some of which have ballpark costs for sewer line cleaning and camera runs too.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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