DIY Doctor

Main navigation

Victorian house soil pipe drainage help!

Postby sarahholder » Wed Apr 28, 2010 9:38 am


We have a standard Victorian mid terrace 3 bed house, with downstairs bathroom out the back. We recently put in an upstairs shower room and the plumber we used was awful, he didn't know what he was doing. Having finished it off ourselves and water turned on, old cast iron stink / vent pipe replaced with new plastic one connecting to cast iron stump it's now apparent that the waste water isn't draining away properly.

It [i]is [/i]draining very slowly, so we think it's either a blockage underground as the pipe has not been used for a drainage pipe just rainwater and venting since the house was built in 1903. The plumber / we should have checked the drainage before but just overlooked it...OR that the pipe is damaged or worse that it doesn't actually connect to sewer pipes just drains into the ground....

First, we are going to try and put some industrial strength drain unblocker down it, any suggestions? Then if no good, we'll call out Dynorod, then worst case scenario guess we need to get someone in to dig up back patio to try and look at where the pipes are and replace pipe or worse create new soil pipe system.

The existing downstairs bathroom soil pipe seems to go out of the house angling towards the front of the house, and whilst there is no manhole or anything in our small front area - it's got a small tree in it, the next door neighbour has a tiny cover on hers and it does overflow and i've seen her call dynorod out.

I'd really appreciate any advice or info or thoughts that anyone might have, we're experienced DIYers but don't have enough knowledge to make a judgement on what to do with this.

Thanks in advance

Rank: Apprentice
Progress to next rank:
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:11 pm


Simply Build It

Postby plumbbob » Fri Apr 30, 2010 10:36 pm

You are right to be worried, it may not connect to a drain at all, but simply be a soak away for rainwater.

You should try and work out the run of all the sewers by lifting manhole covers and see where they run. With the cover up, run some water into the drain. Can you see it flow through the inspection chamber?

Your plumber could have dropped debris down the pipe and blocked it when he made the new connection for example so there could be other causes.
Rank: Project Manager
Posts: 1891
Joined: Wed May 07, 2008 9:59 pm

Postby Perry525 » Sun May 02, 2010 5:59 pm

A great many homes of that vintage have shared sewage pipes running across the middle of their back gardens. Take a look at the deeds to see if you have a shared sewage pipe, and also share the joint cost of any repairs.
It is quite likely that you have connected to a rain water soak away, again many homes were built like that.
Why not speak to your neighbors, some of them will have had drain problems over the years.
Rank: Site Agent
Progress to next rank:
Posts: 734
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 7:35 pm

Display posts from previous
Sort by
Order by

  • DIY How to Project Guides
  • DIY how to tutorial projects and guides - Did you know we have a DIY Projects section? Well, if no, then we certainly do! Within this area of our site have literally hundreds of how-to guides and tutorials that cover a huge range of home improvement tasks. Each page also comes with pictures and a video to make completing those jobs even easier!

  • Related Topics