Forum Title: Upstairs toilet problems
Hi all...first timer with a long one. I have some minor plumbing experience but this is beyond me. At my mom's condo ( built about 1979) she has two upstairs bathrooms. The one in the hallway works fine, the one in the master bedroom is the problem. At first, it would overflow when flushed. I plunged dozens of times and got it to where it would kind of flush....the bowl would fill halfway and then the water would go down after the flapper reset. And it wasn't a good flush with a good gurgle. If you flushed it with a square of TP, afterwards you would probably see the TP inside the exit hole. Anyway, last night I flushed it and not only did the bowl fill but water started coming out from underneath the stool and out of the shower drain. This morning I removed the toilet and stuck a toilet snake into the drain hole in the floor. It went a good 3 feet or more but there wasn't any evidence of a clog. Thinking I might have dislodged a clog without knowing it, I filled a 5 gallon bucket and poured it into the hole. The water went down and somewhere down there I heard a fairly good gurgle. I did this a few more times and even ran the snake down there 3 times for good measure. Thinking everything was good I cleaned up the flange, put a new wax ring on, installed a new flush valve since I had one, and mounted the toilet to the floor. I gave it a flush and....water filled the bowl halfway and didn't even exit with a weak gurgle. Obviously ( I think ) there is a blockage past the toilet/shower pipe and before the pipe that comes in from the hallway bath. I don't have a diagram of how it's plumbed but I'm guessing the bad toilet and shower next to it are connected, then that pipe goes to a 'T' that's connected to the other bathroom's drain. Should I remove the toilet and buy a long drill-powered auger and see if I can find a clog further along than my short toilet auger? Maybe climb the roof and try a long auger down the stack? ( I've never done this one before) I hate to call in a plumber because my mom is on a fixed income and already had to replace a roof last year which was, of course, pretty costly. Sorry my problem is so long winded...any help or advice would be much appreciated!
Post By: CHRISTINE CAMPBELL (Miramar, FL), 02/12/2016
What do you think about removing the toilet again and trying a powered auger? Would a hand-cranked auger work? They seem to be advertised for pipes smaller than a 4 drain....so I'm not sure if it would work.
You will want a drum style machine with a 3/8 or 1/2 cable. Wear proper gloves
Not sure why everyone's first instinct is to get on the roof. Unless you're vent is covered and snow, stay the hell off of there. Your best bet is probly going to be to call in a professional. They will have the necessary equipment, and the know how to use them safely.