I have had sewer main problems since 2007 when the city replaced the main line in the street and a section of the house main with PVC. At first the main would back up every three months or so and I would rent a power snake and clean it out. It has now become a monthly issue.
Approximately one month ago I rented a power snake and it got stuck about 70-75′ out in the drain. I had to call a plumber, on a Saturday night, to remove the snake. He was unable to get it out because his tri-pod was too tall for my basement. I eventually hooked a come along to my ceiling and was able to pull on the snake until it came out.
Last week the main started backing up again so I called the city to come and have a look. The put a camera down the line and it was full of water so they were unable to see anything. They then used a jitter and vacuum to clean the main in the street but the water did not drain out of my line. They hooked up a 1/2 HP pump and hose and ran it down my line to clear out the water but it did not clear all the water. The camera has been pushed out to 75′ and there is always water in the way so we can not see what the problem is.
I am currently fighting with the City Sewer Director because he insists that the issue is a “blockage” and I need to hire a plumber to cut it out. Every plumber I have called has informed me that they will not do this because it is the city’s responsibility. I agree with the plumbers on this one. I am wondering how you feel about this and if I should just hire a plumber.
I agree with the plumbers on this one. It may be advisable to get a certified inspector trained in engineering/plumbing to come out and survey the situation and provide you a written report as you may need this to persuade the City to take action or in the event the situation takes a turn to legal channels. At some point you will need to make a decision as to whether you want to bite the bullet and just contract out the job yourself. It really goes against my nature, but these snafus with a city official who may choose not to see another side to the situation can run a long course. Meanwhile, you are inconvenience and stressed. So practical considerations may at some stage take on a larger priority.