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I've had good success clearing out a blockage but am wondering - how do I know when I hit the street line? What does it feel like?

Right now I hit a seemingly impassable point (I didn't force it) about 5-6 feet past the obstruction I cleared - would that be the street?

The cleanout is around 50 feet from the street and I am snaking out around 70 feet (block was at around 60). I'm guessing that is due to the downslope and the fact the street line may be on the other side of the road.

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3 Answers 3

I've done this a few times and I've never been able to "feel" when you hit the street. Maybe someone who does this often acquires more of a feel. I'm at least 50ft from my street, so perhaps it's just because there's a lot of resistance from the 50ft of snake in the line.

The easiest way (other than a camera of course) to know you're at the street is to measure the distance from the edge of your foundation to the street, then add the distance inside plus a few feet to account for it not being perfectly straight and level. If you've gone 70ft when you think it should only be 50ft, my guess is that you're past the street already. Either that or the markings are wrong.

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You have to measure your snake line. I have 150 feet to my main and when I think I get to around that amount I tie a string to my snake line and measure. Not a ton of math. You have to probably guess what the drop is and then measure out the distance.

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Chances are you won't feel the street, because the snake will just head on down the sewer main. You'll want to measure. The fancy snakes have readouts of the distance for exactly this reason.

Also check your line for additional cleanouts. My jurisdiction requires a two way cleanout right at the curb line.

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