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Ballpark cost of unblocking a drain

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  1. #1
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    Default Ballpark cost of unblocking a drain

    Hi everyone

    We've recently bought our first home (Melbourne-Preston area) and this is my first post. I have no idea what I'll have to pay for the sort of small jobs that will inevitably arise, which makes it hard to budget and to deal with tradespeople. It would be great if anyone is able to offer any sort of guidance.

    The first job I need to get sorted is unblocking a pipe. The pipe runs from my front yard and under the footpath then empties straight into the road gutter. It's about 2.5 meters long, 10 cm diameter and is totally blocked with mud/silt and definitely has tree roots in it. This means my front gate sits in a puddle at the first hint of rain. Access isn't a problem.

    Is anyone able to give a really rough idea of what this might cost to get unblocked? I also need to consider that the pipe might need reinforcing once it's cleared too.

    Thank you in anticipation...

    Tim

  2. #2
    hardly human Clinton1's Avatar
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    pipe empties in the road gutter, where does it start from and what it is connected to?

    Do you have something, piece of steel, pvc electrical pipe conduit or steel picket you can ram up it to loosen the blockage, then blast it out with a jet nozzel on the hose?
    Your local garden shop should sell products (tablets) that kill and eat away tree roots as the short term 'fix'.
    If you can get it working, maybe its better to wait on getting someone in until you have a few plumbing jobs lined up.

    If it is only 2.5 metres, perhaps you can dig it out, pull it out from under the footpath and just replace it?
    Cheers,
    Clinton

    "Use your third eye" - Watson

  3. #3
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    Hi Clinton

    Thanks for the quick reply. The pipe goes straight through from my front yard to the road - it's really just a hole in the ground, straight down and then a 90 degree turn towards the road. It's all self contained and I'd estimate about 15 cm deep. Digging it up might be an option, but seems a bit drastic - the road kerb is concrete and is integral to the opening of the pipe so I don't think it would be an easy option.

    I've tried unblocking it myself with a long metal curtain rod, but didn't get very far because of the roots. I probably should try jetting water at it to remove the mud but will need to source a nozel that concentrates the water sufficiently, and will look into those root killing products. You're right in that it would make much more sense to get a bunch of jobs together, but it's hard to know what might come up.

    Cheers
    Tim

  4. #4
    Senior Member DavidG's Avatar
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    If the pipe is that short and full of roots then there is a breakage in it anyway. Probably best to dig it up and replace it.
    The hole at the gutter will remain and the new pipe should just slide in.
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  5. #5
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    Phillta, I reckon you could probably do it yourself. Set aside a Saturday. Like DavidG said, you should be able to slide out the old pipe and assume you buy the same size pipe, you should be able to hammer it into the concrete hole in the gutter on the road. Once you've got that in place, join the rest up. Is it running under the foot path too though? If so, you could probably pull the pipe out from your front yard. If it doesn't move, its probably because you have roots in the pipe whch need to be cut from around the pipe to start off with. Good luck with it.
    Dan.

  6. #6
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    Thanks guys

    I'll have a nudge at it myself as suggested. Hopefully it's not holding the footpath up...

    Cheers
    Tim

  7. #7
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    Be aware that you will more than likely need an opening permit to dig up the foot path, especially if its paved, and hammering out the old pipe from the kerb wont work, you will have to cut it short and join on to it.
    Plumbers were around long before Jesus was a carpenter

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