RESOLUTION: The problem was in the line from the house to the street. But not roots, simply a narrowing of the 60 year old pipe, combined with the usual confluence of suspects. I asked the plumber what I should do in future. For this situation, drain products do nothing, as the problem was outside. He said next time I could try a gadget that acts like a stent in the pipe, accessing the clog via my outside opening. We shall see. Thank you all for the ideas. Life is returning to normal.
UPDATE: The plumber comes at noon today. At which point I also plan to ask him to give me a five step program to make it more likely I never have to call him again. Thank you all so much for your hints and support. This has been draining. I know, I know. Sorry. Let’s blame all bad puns on stress.
I spent much of the weekend stalking my drains. They’re clogged. All round. I’d try drain cleaner, see brief improvement, and then everything would regress. Finally, in a fit of pioneer spirit, I stalked off to the hardware store and bought a pipe snake.
Again, apparent success. Again, failure, but this time more promising, less abject. I know I should give up the fight but I just don’t want to.
I loathe drain-clearing franchises. Seems that they have no skill, and charge ridiculous amounts just because they have the right equipment. Nor can I assess their performance other than in the outcome. Risky, expensive, business.
On the other hand, I’m not sure how much longer I can stay Sturdy in the face of obdurate drains. I am hoping that if I keep on using Really Big Words to describe the situation I will force surrender, but I fear the Drain Doctors await.
If you don’t mind, I won’t post pictures. I promise, what I’m wearing for all this does not want to see the light of day any more than do my pipes.
Back tomorrow, drains either doctored or conquered. Onward.