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 Black slime in drain pipe
Author: fireguy

After living here for 30 years, The drains in my 113 year old house are running slow. It is a 2 story house, bath upstairs, kitchen 1st floor and bathroom 1st floor. I have used an enzyme product that works very well on commercial kitchen roofs and the grease that accumulates around exhaust fans. The sink in the upstairs bath is running better now, but the kitchen sink is still slow. Today's project was to replace the 1.25" drain in the first floor bath. I had to remove the 1.5" chrome pipe that goes into the wall. There is very little slope, and after removing hte 1.5" bushing,I found the pipe almost plugged with black slime. What is it and how do I get rid of it? I cannot find my small snake, so I poked around with a screwdriver and removed some of the slime. The drain pipe goes into the wall and immediatly makes a 90° bend, goes horizontally, then drops into the celler and into the cast iron soil pipe.

Suggestions are welcome. Don't suggest Drano. If I was going to use Sodium Hydroxide, I would use some of the 99% beads I have.

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: eman123 (MO)

you probally have galvanized pipe for your drain arms and really the best thing you can do is to replace it all the way to the stack because all you have in your pipe is years of build up in there . it is so common to have what you have in older homes like yours . good luck and remember your local plumber is only a phone call away .

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: dlh (TX)

that slime is tooth paste, make up, soap and everything else you use over the sink. you really need a snake to clean the line properly but cleaning what you did with the screw driver and using the enzyme cleaner might help.

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: redwood (CT)

I concurr 100% with DLH!

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: fireguy

Thanks for the replies, even though it was not what I wanted to hear. I will try the enzyme in that sink. If I have to, I will repipe in plastic. If I use galvanized, I will have to resize my dies for galvanized and am too lazy for that.

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: dlh (TX)

you dont want to use galvy pipe anyway

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PLUMBERS "Protecting The Health Of The Nation"

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: Wheelchair (IL)

Have you considered water jetting the black sewer grease down the line?
Much depends on the integrity of your waste pipe, galv or not. A jetter uses hot water and air pressure to clear and clean the interior side of your waste pipe, all the way to the street.
Once the pipe is clear and clean you can inspect then determine if the drains require replacing. If the galv pipe is still good, you can plan on a future date for upgrading those waste lines.

This is merely an option to consider.
Best Wishes

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: dlh (TX)

shouldnt haveve grease in a lav drain

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PLUMBERS "Protecting The Health Of The Nation"

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 Re: Black slime in drain pipe
Author: mjb1962853 (NY)

If all your problems are only soft black goo, just properly snake or jet the drains to clean them out. Use the enzyme to try to keep them clear.

If the pipes are blocked with rock-hard deposits or are corroded to the point of failing, THEN replacement should be considered.

Unless your local code demands metal drain pipes, why use galvanized? A properly plumbed PVC (or CI if metal is required) drain system should far outlast a galv system.

Good luck.

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