Drain Rods Stuck? Advice and Guidance from Walsall's No. 1 Drainage & Plumbing Company
3rd July 2012
... Comments

Help!!! My Drain Rods Are Stuck

The above is a common topic that we are contacted over as the hapless and frustrated home owner trying to save a few pounds has now not only got a blocked drain but he has lost his newly purchased or borrowed drain rods in the system as well.

Why Drain Rods Get Stuck Or Lost
The main cause of rods becoming detached during the drain clearing process is that they simply unthread themselves, the rods purchased at the large DIY houses and builders merchants screw together and all that thrashing about in the drain can cause the rods to spin and undo.

Similarly if the plunger or screw attachment become lodged in the blockage or on a sharp bend panic ensues and invariably the rods are pushed, pulled and twisted in all directions, unfortunately twisting the rods anti-clockwise undoes them and the law of sod says that it will be the joint halfway down the system that separates first and leaves you holding just three of the six rods you started with.

Drain Rod Plunger Attachment

Rubber drain plunger heads are the same internal diameter as the drain itself or slightly larger, they have a tendency to fit snugly in an open joint and for some reason they will pass through a badly stepped joint fairly easily but they don`t want to pass back the same way quite as easily. Depending on the make and age of the rubber it should be an easy enough job to recover them but as mentioned earlier panic sets in and five minutes of thrashing around results in the rods separating.

Rods can get stuck when they have passed around several sharp bends or when the plain end of a rod finds its way into the sub-soil via a displaced joint. Overzealous rodding will punch a hole through a bend such as a rest bend at the base of a soil vent pipe particularly if the system is made up of vitrified clay ware and again the rods become lodged in the sub soil.

How We Get Lost Drain Rods Out
There are several techniques for removing drain rods from a system without the need for excavation works, they are as follows;

If the rods have just twisted and separated then a high pressure water jetter may well flush them out, ideally this requires access from a downstream position and no attachment on the end of the rods.

If the rods have unscrewed they can be retrieved by using a camera, a set of similar rods and with the dexterity that a heart surgeon would be proud of we can re-screw into the lost rods and pull them back in most cases.

Other techniques include forming a slip noose using fishing wire or similar and placing it over the rods with the aid of another set of drain rods, a drain camera and some nimble hand, eye co-ordination, and finally fishing wire along with some barbed hooks placed on the end of a set or steel rods and spun until it grips the stranded drain rods.

All the above have been used and worked at some time or other, every job is different but these techniques are certainly worth a try prior to carrying out expensive excavation works.

Need some help? Give us a call for advice and guidance

0800 015 1452

Popular Categories