Unclogging Your Drains
Two of the grossest things you may encounter as a homeowner: 1). A kitchen sink full of dishes that won’t drain. 2). Taking a shower with water backing up ankle-deep because it can’t drain. Both examples need an unclog drain, and that is what we will discuss in this article today. Who doesn’t have some type of unclog drain cleaner under a sink, or at least a plunger?
If you don’t, whether you are a homeowner or a renter, you need to be able to unclog drain at home. Invest in some unclog drain equipment like a plunger and some type of off-the-shelf drain cleaner. You must be ready to unclog drains with no warning, so by having the equipment and supplies on hand, you’ll be ready. Dial 412-561-3624 to schedule a time for us to come unclog a drain in Pittsburgh, PA.
How do you unclog a severely clogged drain?
A stubborn clog is not fun, and it is tempting to ignore it, hoping it will clear itself. However, that can lead to ore plumbing problems, maybe even worse than to simply unclog drain. Sometimes, homeowners simply ignore it because they don’t know what to do or have tried a few things that didn’t work. Here we offer six tactics to unclog drains in the bathroom or kitchen:
Boiling Water: Try this tactic before you try any other method – pour boiling water into the drain. Often, food, grease, and other debris that are clogging drain will break loose or dissolve with boiling hot water.
Baking Soda with Vinegar: Not just to unclog drains, but this combo is a powerhouse cleaner for many things around the house, and the best part, both are all natural products. You can do this two ways with the first one being mix an equal part of baking soda with vinegar and pour into the clogged drain. The other way is to pour an equal amount of baking soda in the drain, then follow that with pouring an equal amount of vinegar in the drain. You’ll hear and see a fizzing action and that is the two products removing the grime, gunk, and hair.
A Wire Clothes Hanger: This is old school but a magnificent plumbing tool, especially if you don’t have any equipment that unclog drains, like a plunger. Straighten a wire clothes hanger and push a slightly curved end into the drain and go fishing! The goal is to pull the clogging matter out, not push it further down.
A Shop Vac: If you don’t have a shop vac, maybe you can borrow one. Cover the vent, then set the shop vac to liquids. Make a tight seal over the drain with the vac hose, then turn it on to the highest setting. Hopefully, the suction will unclog drain.
A Drain Snake: This is a low-budget and low-tech way that has unclog drains for years, tried and true. Insert the snake in the drain and start turning the handle, pushing until you hit resistance. Start rotating the snake until it frees up and then run water, so you’ll know if you have an unclog drain.
Caustic Soda: This may be from your high school sophomore year chemistry, but remember caustic soda is the same as sodium hydroxide and can cause chemical burns. This should be use with the utmost caution and not with kids in the room. Wear eye protection and gloves, then pour three-quarters of a gallon cold water in a plastic bucket, then 3 cups of caustic soda. Use a wooden spoon and stir until dissolved. The mixture will fizz as it heats, that when you need to pour it into the drain and let it sit for 30 minutes. Next pour boiling water in the drain to flush. If that didn’t unclog drain, repeat the steps.
Professional Plumber: If none of these tactics worked, call a professional plumber. You may have a bigger issue than trying to unclog drains.
How do you clear a slow bathtub drain?
To unclog drain in a bathtub is usually the easiest of drains to unclog. Using the methods that we talked about above with a little twist to each one as follows:
The Baking Soda and Vinegar Method: Again, these are all natural products and will be the safest on the pipes and the environment. The mixture is a little different from what we discussed earlier.
Pour ½ cup of baking soda in the drain.
Pour 1 cup of white vinegar in the drain.
Let it sit for 5 minutes as it foams up.
Run hot water in the drain for 1 to 2 minutes.
If the drain still has a clog, try the next method
Commercial Chemical Based Method: There are many brands on the market today at your local grocery or hardware store. We can’t stress enough how important it is to follow the instructions on the packaging.
Read the instructions and follow them exactly as stated.
Wear eye protection and gloves before starting.
Do not mix any of the chemical products or home-made products!
The Plunger Method: An old school and inexpensive method that works 99% of the time. It may not unclog drain that is filled with an enormous hair ball because it needs to create a suction below the clog and at the drain opening.
Rub petroleum jelly on the edge of the suction end to create a good seal.
Run water in the bathtub to cover the rubber end of the plunger.
Vigorously plunge up and down on the bathtub drain.
Be prepared for hair balls, soap scum, and other debris to pop up.
Do not put whatever comes up back in the drain! Place it in the trash.
Remove the Stopper Method: If none of the following methods have worked, time to get down to the dirty and nasty.
Unscrew and remove the drain stopper.
Remove any hair and other debris that comes up with the stopper.
If the stopper isn’t stuck, then get a plumber’s snake and follow the next method’s steps.
Plumbers’ Snake Method: A household tool that every homeowner should have.
Feed the plumber’s snake down into the drain until it reaches the clog.
Turn the handle until you can pull the clog matter up.
Run water into the drain to make sure it is clear.
If you don’t have an unclog drain, repeat the process.
The Professional Plumber Method: When all the above fails, call your plumber.
Will bleach unclog a drain?
No, it does not dissolve or eat through the debris that typically clogs drains like soap scum and toothpaste. It helps to pour three-fourths cup of household bleach and follow with hot water to flush, deodorize, and sanitize a drain once a week. However, to unclog drains, bleach is an ineffective method.
What can dissolve hair in a drain?
Contrary to what we just said, bleach candissolve hair and possibly unclog drains. Because bleach is a chemical and hair is acidic, the mixture will neutralize the reaction between the two and the bleach will dissolve any acidic fiber properties.
Try one cup of bleach and allow it to sit five minutes. If this doesn’t unclog drain of hair, you can try another round of the bleach, but keep in mind that the hair clog will have collected other debris like floss, soap scum, and more.
Our Last Few Suggestions to Unclog Drains
These days, finding all natural ways to do things around the house is important, for our pocketbooks and the environment. So,how do you unclog a drain naturally?The next time you are faced with trying to unclog drains, in the bathtub, shower, or a sink, keep these all natural methods in mind:
- Baking Soda with Vinegar: Pour half of a cup of baking soda and half of a cup of vinegar down the clogged drain and plug it off, allow the mixture to sit 60 minutes. Next, pour boiling water down the drain. Repeat the process if necessary, to unclog drain.
- Baking Soda with Lemon Juice: Pour half of a cup of baking soda with half a cup of lemon juice down the clogged drain and plug it off, allow to sit for 60 minutes. Now add a pot of boiling water to unclog drain.
- Baking Soda with Salt: Are you starting to see a pattern here with baking soda? Mix half a cup of table salt with half of a cup of baking soda and pour into the clogged drain. Let sit for thirty minutes if you’re needing the sink or tub, overnight is better. Then add boiling hot water and this should unclog drain.
- Baking Soda with Salt and Cream of Tartar: Pour half of a cup of baking soda, half a cup of salt with two tablespoons cream of tartar in a container with a lid. Shake well to mix the three ingredients and then pour ½ into the clogged drain. Pour boiling hot water and allow to sit for 60 minutes. Then pour let water run for a few minutes to rinse any residue of the solution and make sure it unclog drain.
- Salt with Borax and Vinegar: Pour one-fourth cup of salt and one-fourth cup of Borax down the clogged drain. Then follow with half cup vinegar and a pot of boiling hot water. Let this mixture sit for 60 minutes or longer, then let hot water from tap run to rinse the drain of any residue and make sure it has unclog drain.