Drain Cleaning Tips and Secrets

Clogged drain got you down? Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us. Whether it’s hair in a bathroom sink or a backup of grease in the kitchen, clogged drains are an all-too-common problem for homeowners. Thankfully, some clogs are minor and can be fixed by some simple DIY plumbing.

But whatever you do, DO NOT use chemical drain cleaners! They’re dangerous to people, dangerous to the environment, and dangerous to your pipes. The harsh liquid eats away at plastic pipes and can even corrode metal pipes. If you use drain cleaners frequently enough, or if they don’t resolve the clog, the chemicals will just sit around in your pipes and ruin them.

That said, here are a few low-risk things to try before calling in the professionals:

Boiling water

Boiling water
Boiling water

This trick is a cheap and easy way to get rid of light clogs. But first a word of caution: Only use boiling water in metal pipes, not ABS. If you don’t know what kind of pipes you have, just use hot water.

Here’s how to do it: Wait until your sink, basin (Not porcelain) or bathtub is empty, then flush the drain with the boiling/hot water. That’s it!  For good maintenance once a month boil some water then add dish soap to your kitchen sink drain and flush it through with the boiled water.

 

 

 

Fix your clogged drains with baking soda, vinegar and hot water!
Use 1 cup of vinegar, 1/2 cup of baking soda and 4 cups of hot water to fix those stubborn clogs.

Baking soda and vinegar

Gather one cup of white vinegar, half a cup of baking soda, and four cups of boiling water. Sprinkle the baking soda down the drain, pour down the vinegar, then seal the drain to keep the fizz in. Let it work its magic for 10 minutes or so, then chase it with the boiling water.

 

 

 

Plunging

Flange Plunger
Flange Plunger

First, make sure you have the right type of plunger.  A flange plunger works the Best.  Next, fill your sink or bathtub part way with water.

Then, plug all the other outlets. If you’re dealing with a double kitchen sink, plug one drain with a wet rag before you start plunging. If it’s a bathroom sink, plug the overflow hole. Finally, plunge away! Using a vertical up-and-down motion, plunge repeatedly with quick, forceful thrusts. Do this for 10 or 15 seconds, remove the plunger, and repeat.

 

Snaking or Rooting

Hand Snake
Hand Snake

Try using a small household drain snake (also known as a drain auger), found at any local hardware store.

They’re inexpensive and good to have around for pesky clogs that are deeper inside the drainpipe.

Still stuck? Unclogging a drain isn’t always a simple task. So instead of making the problem even worse, it’s best to contact a professional plumber. We offer 24-hour service in Victoria, Saanich, Oak Bay, Esquimalt, Sidney and the WestShore CALLAWAY Plumbing and Drains Ltd. have the experience and proper drain cleaning tools to unclog any drain—guaranteed.

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250.216.7159

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