Um, Siphoning Aquarium Drained all my toilets?! YES YOU READ THIS RIGHT!!

jmay

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So this is strange, odd, gross, and interesting.

I bought the Aqueon Siphon that Petco sells. The kind that attaches to a sink. I've used it a couple times, but today I used it a bit longer to clean out some debris in my tank. Everything seemed to go fine but then after I was done we noticed the toilet bowl in the bathroom was empty! Then we noticed the other bathroom toilet bowl was empty!! The house started to stink cause all the traps were empty! We had to run water through all the pipes to get it back to normal.

HOW IN THE WORLD?? ??????

The only thing I can figure is I had the water on full blast while siphoning which gives a stong suction on the aquarium end. The sink can't drain that fast and fills with water so somehow it started sucking water up from the drain? Wierd. Anyone ever experience this before? FREAKY!

Any plumbers around that could explain this to me? I really don't wanna experience that again!
 
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jmay

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I wasn't changing the water, just sucking a little sand out of places I didn't want it. Just playing really. Right now the fish are in a little 1 gallon tank and I've been using it to change their water out periodically.
 

Geoffrey

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Oh, that that's strange o_O

Which fish are in the 1 gallon? I'd suggest moving them into the 55 gallon and do a fish-in cycle instead. I think it's better for the fish to be in an uncycled 55 gallon tank rather than an uncycled 1 gallon tank.
 
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jmay

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2 little gold fish. A common and a Comet I think. Kids one them at the fair. They've been in the little tank for 5 weeks now and the new tank I just got so I thought they might be better off in the little tank until I cycled the big tank. The little tank still has a decent amount of ammonia so I'm doing constant partial changes to keep it to a minimum.

I'm a newb so don't totally know what I am doing. Thats really obvious now that I just sucked all the water out of my toilets LOL
 

Geoffrey

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In my opinion, the goldfish would be better off in the 55 gallon. Goldfish are massive waste producers and would cause spikes in ammonia quickly in the 1 gallon tank. And like I said, they'd probably be better in a large uncycled tank than a small uncycled tank.

I'd recommend getting SeaChem's Prime since it neutralizes ammonia for 24-48 hours.
 
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jmay

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You make some good points actually. Let me start a new thread on this topic.
 

Tolak

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You've got a clogged vent with the plumbing. Call a plumber if You're not confident you can fix this yourself.
 

ryanr

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Hi,
How new is your house? Is it setup with vaccuum plumbing?

It's also possible that there was enough flow through the drainage to induce a siphon that 'sucked' all the water in the lines out of the house
 
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jmay

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House is 8 years old. We have a septic tank if that makes a difference.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum mobile app
 

ryanr

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Not sure.... might best to call a plumber, but it sounds like you created a vaccuum in your system.
 

Tolak

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Not sure.... might best to call a plumber, but it sounds like you created a vaccuum in your system.
That's exactly what a clogged vent does when you have a high flow rate at the drain that vent services. If it's an island sink it won't have a roof vent, it'll have a ventless setup. If it isn't an island sink there's a stack that runs up & out the roof, this will be above where the sink is located.

Usually a strong blast from a hose will clear it out, it is roof work. Sometimes you'll have a dead bird or other critter that managed to fall in & die, you'll have to rod it & pull that out if the hose doesn't work.

Not a plumber, just a guy who has taken older houses over the years & done rehab, then turned them around. This one is my 3rd, and hopefully last adventure, it's the newest one at 57 years old.
 
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