5 Tips for Clearing a Clogged Drain

Do you know what to do when your drains become clogged?

If not, don’t worry. It can happen in even the cleanest of homes, which is why it’s so important to know what to do when it does happen. If your drains get clogged, you could end up with major water damage, which could translate to hundreds or thousands of dollars in damage bills.

Luckily, there are several things you can do to clear clogged drains on your own. Doing so will save you a lot of money in the long run.

If you’re interested in learning more, simply keep reading to discover the top ways to clear a clogged drain.

1. Boiling Water

Boiling water is an effective approach used in clearing clogged drains. The hot temperature breaks down blockages like soap scum, fat, and grease by pouring a pot of boiling water down your drain. The hot water also helps to dislodge items lodged further down the drain, such as small pieces of food, hair, and other objects.

Step-by-Step Instructions

First, boil 1-2 quarts of water in a kettle. Then, pour the water slowly into the drain in several rounds, giving the water time to clear the clog between each round.

After pouring all boiling water into the drain, allow the hot water to sit for 10-15 minutes. This will allow the clog to soften and break up.

Finally, flush the drain with cold water to remove debris loosened from the clog. If the clog is not cleared after this step, you may need to repeat the process or try another method.

2. Baking Soda and Vinegar

Baking soda and vinegar are popular DIY remedies for clearing a clogged drain. When combined, these two ingredients create a chemical reaction that causes the heated acidic vinegar to foam and expand, scrubbing the sides of the pipe and breaking up the particles that may be causing the drain to clog.

This method is non-toxic, making it safe for use on almost any drain. It is especially useful on slow-draining sinks and bathtubs, away from more delicate plumbing fixtures. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

The following instructions will walk you through the simple steps. First, begin by pouring 1 cup of baking soda down the drain. Then follow with 1 cup of white vinegar immediately.

This will cause the baking soda and vinegar to mix and foam. It’ll push the clog through the piping.

After about 5 minutes, flush the drain with hot water for about two minutes. If the clog has not yet gone away, try the process again.

Add some salt to the baking soda before pouring it down the drain for more intense cleaning. This will help to scour away any built-up grime. 

3. Plunger 

A plunger works by creating a suction seal over the clog, and then by using a pumping action, it causes a pressure difference to create a force that helps to move and clear the clog. This is done by pushing the plunger down over the drain and then making quick up-and-down motions to create a vacuum seal.

Once the seal has been created, the plunger should then be used to make a stronger suction. This will help to break up and dislodge the clog in the drain. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

Using a plunger to clear a clogged drain is surprisingly simple if the proper steps are followed. First, make sure the plunger is correctly sized for the drain. This will depend on the width and depth of the drain opening.

Next, check if the plunger is submerged in water. If not, fill the sink or tub with enough hot water to cover the suction cup. Place the plunger over the drain opening, ensuring it seals up around the edges.

Now, start plunging up and down in a vigorous but controlled manner, completing 10 to 15 reps. Give a quick final push at the end.

Finally, lift the plunger and check to see if the water has gone down. If the clog isn’t cleared, repeat the plunging process. 

4. Snake 

A snake is a plumbing tool designed to safely and efficiently clear clogged drains. The snake works by gently pushing its flexible cable into the drain line, actively seeking out and removing clogs, debris, and obstructions.

The snake is equipped with a fine-toothed steel head designed to easily cut through the toughest blockages. It is followed by a coiled spring that literally “snakes” around the clog and allows it to be pulled free from the line. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

First, ensure that you have the correct-sized snake for the job. An undersized one will be ineffective, while a shorter one might damage the pipes.

Next, get the right type of snake. It could be a manual or a powered electric one. Finally, turn off the water or power source, and get to work.

Carefully snake the clogged drain, pushing against any blockages while turning the crank until it passes. Work slowly and be careful not to force too much pressure while snaking the pipe. When snaking is done, you may run some water to check if it has cleared the clog. 

5. Chemical Drain Cleaner

A chemical drain cleaning product contains caustic chemicals such as hydrochloric, sulfuric, or phosphoric acid. These products act as oxidizing agents to break down the clog. This can be especially effective with grease, oil, hair, soaps, and other materials causing the blockage.’

Step-by-Step Instructions

Begin by placing safety goggles, rubber gloves, and appropriate clothing on. Next, pour the chemical cleaner directly into the drain, following the recommended instructions regarding how much cleaner to use.

Wait for the suggested time on the packaging before flushing the drain with hot water. If the clogged drain is not cleared after following these steps, it is best to contact a professional drain cleaning company immediately.

Have a Smooth Flowing Drains With Clogged Drain Solutions

Having a clogged drain can be a costly and discouraging problem. By following these tips, however, you can save time, money, and headaches by clearing the blockage yourself.

Try boiling water, plungers, vinegar, baking powder, or a plumbing snake before you call a plumbing company! Your drains will be working better in no time.

We hope you found this article helpful. If you do, be sure to check out our blog for more great content like this.


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