While I was showering this morning, the water refused to drain. After hours of it being in the same state, I found out the toilet would not drain as well. The sink, however, does. If the toilet is flushed, it is sent to the bath tub.

Plunging doesn't do anything (I blocked the spillage pipe in the tub as well as the toilet and plunged from the shower, as my toilet has a very unusual hole that the plunger doesn't cover). Using Liquid-Plumr (chemical drain opener) allowed the shower to drain and the toilet to flush until the shower is turned on again. When the shower is turned on, it'll drain but the toilet will start to bubble and fill.

I used a snake and found no blockage from the toilet or the tub.

I found a product called the Drain King, but I wouldn't know how to use it. Could I use it from the sink drain? Will this even fix my issue?

Any help would be very appreciated. I only have this one bathroom; you can guess how inconvenient this situation is.


It seems the sink does back up to the shower. I'm having no issues in the sink area itself, though.

  • I've called a plumber, and from the sound of things it doesn't seem to be our fault. My landlord is trying to pin this on us because ' we use toilet paper', but according to the plumber that doesn't seem to be the case. How am I able to prove we are or are not at fault? The plumber will hopefully have a definite answer once he arrives. Commented Dec 31, 2016 at 0:45
  • Once material (euphemism) is going through the pipes, it should keep moving unless it hits some sort of barrier (a bad bend in the pipe, congealed fat, etc). So, the plumber's investigation will be educational. Where are you located? ("Drain King" suggests the US.) Commented Dec 31, 2016 at 13:10
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    I am located in Seattle, WA. The plumber came and found that the piping was not up to code and has separated out in the driveway. Commented Jan 1, 2017 at 16:40
  • Interesting: what do you (or he) mean by "separated out in the driveway"? Commented Jan 1, 2017 at 16:55
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    The piping in the ground where the driveway is was not installed correctly and the piping has separated from each other. Seems that the plumbers have to dig in and do the repair. From what they told me, the original install was not legal. Commented Jan 2, 2017 at 2:27

1 Answer 1


You have a blockage further down in the pipe that services your shower, toilet and sink. That's creating a sea of liquid that comes out at the lowest available point (i.e. your shower). Drain cleaner will be worse than useless; while a pool of poop may be nasty, a pool of caustic poop would be even worse. A 5' or so drain snake won't do it; you probably need something much longer, and a way to get it into the pipe (past the traps on whichever device you enter through). And, until you've cleared it, stop adding liquid to the situation.

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