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The Cobra: Plumber's Asp or Angelic Snake?
on December 7, 2008
The answer is angelic snake. We had one of these for at least a decade and it had proven a worthy sewer serpent a number of times. A few months ago, though, our lines clogged again, probably near the orange trees we kept forgetting to water during the summer. We bought root killer and flushed it (once a day, that's as often as things would go down) and found slight relief. After a week, when the roots would be beginning to die, my mate took our old sewer rod up on the roof and started grinding it down the vent. He worked a few hours, but couldn't get the sewer snake/rod/tape to go any further. So we resumed putting root killer down the john and trying the snake every few days.
We left the snake on the roof, sticking out of the vent. One day, my mate yelled something obscene but cheerful -- he thought he'd broken through. But no. The tape had been eaten away by the root killer.
So we went to Lowe's and Home Depot and nobody knew what a 'sewer tape' was. They had snakes, nothing big enough or long enough, mind you, and every place told us we couldn't do it ourselves. Finally, a plumbing supply store told us it was probably an impossible task (even though we'd done it successfully a decade ago) but that he could order a 100 foot sewer rod and it would cost something in the $140 range. Since the old one cost at least $70, that seemed reasonable.
But we didn't order it. Instead, I booted to Amazon and, expecting nothing, found exactly what we used to have. The Cobra 100 foot flat sewer rod, pictured here. And it was $50! $50 -- not even $70!
We used it successfully -- just another hour of sweating and god-knows-what hit the main city sewer line. Then we hosed it down and rolled it up. We're putting a new dishwasher in this weekend and the tape will be used to clean main line from kitchen to the far side of the house. We've done that in our older home a number of times over the years when it seems like a dishwasher isn't cleaning as well as it ought to. It always does the trick.
It's a great tool. And it's toilet humor! And the price is fantastic -- who could ask for more?