Why Is My Plumbing System Bubbling?

A house plumbing system can bubble up from any small obstruction in drains or ventilation pipes or may be caused by a larger blockage. Ignoring the bubbles can produce sewage bubbling up through your fixtures drains, as the bubbles could indicate a major obstruction in the pipes that should be released by a professional.

Drain Line Clogs

Clogs of one or more may exist in your drains, creating air bubbles in the pipes. These clogs are only partial clogs, meaning water can still flow down the unclogged portion of the pipe opening. These obstructions cause the water to shake and beat in ways it normally would not, producing bubbles in the water that find their way to the drain hole of your fixture. A partial obstruction may sit near the drain opening, or may exist in the drainage line.

Ventilation pipe clogs

All plumbing fixtures in your home connect to the plumbing ventilation pipes, otherwise the fittings will not work properly. When you wash, the waste water takes some of the air in the pipes with it. The ventilation pipes rise vertically through the roof of your house, with the opening on the exterior. The ventilation pipes draw in new air to replace what was lost with wastewater. In addition, ventilation tubes act as exhaust pipes for sewer gases trapped in the drains of the pipes. With an obstruction in the ventilation pipes, bubbles can get into plumbing fixtures.

Clear ventilation tubes

If it is suspected that a ventilation pipe is obstructed in your home’s plumbing system, you should climb to the roof to examine the ventilation pipe in question. If you do not see an obstruction in the top of the pipe, shine a flashlight inside the pipe to find the obstruction. Twigs, leaves and even tennis balls can clog a ventilation pipe. If you cannot reach into the ventilation tubing with your hands or a tool, you can break the clogs with a garden hose and a high pressure fitting.

Maintenance of drainage lines

Start by cleaning the drain pipe for the fixture where you saw the bubbles. Use a plunger, which covers the drain, and pump up and down several times. The plunger sends pressure shock waves down the drains, which can strike a nuisance for free. If the plunger does not help, send a drain snake down the drains to hit the free clog. If you cannot remove the clog, it can exist in one of the large drains in your plumbing system, which requires a plumber to clear the clog.