The 5 Best Ways To Unclog Your Drains On A Budget
Drains clog, and it usually sucks when they do. There is never a good time to have your plumbing back up and cause a stink. Drains clog for many reasons, hair, foreign objects, grease, and natural causes like root systems. Yes, tree roots can grow into your pipes and cause them to clog up, especially if items are going down the drain and toilet that shouldn’t be. Most of the time drains can be unclogged with some elbow grease and a few household items. Other times you may need to call upon a local plumber to come and clean your pipes for you. If the clog is located deep enough in the pipeline then you may require an industrial snake to get deep enough to loosen up the debris and pull it out. There are great websites out there like Advanced Plumbing in Toronto that can be great resources for finding plumbing solutions, and finding plumbers if needed. If you don’t have a local plumber that you can call upon, then you can take these 5 simple tips for unclogging drains and do your best plumbers impression. Good luck!
Depending on the depth of the clog, an old wire hanger stretched out should give you enough reach to get ahold of hair clogs and foreign debris that might be logged just out of reach of your fingers. A hanger can operate like a snake, once you run it down the pipe you can twist it so that it scrapes and collects the debris or objects that are causing the drain to clog. If you bend the end of the hanger like. Fish hook before feeding it down the drain pipe, you will increase your chances of catching something in there, especially hair. The hanger isn’t as effective in the toilet bowls as it is in sink and shower drains. I do remember a time though that I recovered a pair of eyeglasses from the toilet using a coat hanger.
Boiling Hot Water and Dish Soap
Boiling hot water is great for so many things and unclogging drains is one of them. You can try it first without dish soap, but I always just pour it in first and let it sit for a few minutes. Soap and hot water are great for loosening up grease and grime, it can also act as a lubricant and help lodged objects that are stuck slide through. I usually use something like Dawn dish soap, pour about a quarter to a half cup down the drain and let it seep into the nooks and crannies needed to get things to move. Next, take some boiling hot water and start slowly pouring it into the drain, add a little, wait a minute, add a little, wait, rinse and repeat. Again, this is not something that is going to be effective for unclogging the toilet, but is great for sink and shower drains.
This is more than just a household item, you are going to need to make a trip to the local Home Depot and purchase yourself one of these, and that is the only reason it is third to the first two. A drain snake has a much further reach than a hanger and is typically designed to twist and turn as it snakes through the pipe. Most snakes have a claw-like extension that claw and grab at hair and debris in the pipes as you fish them through. Some snakes are operated manually, while others are machine operated. I am a huge fan of snakes and have a few on hand at all times. Mine are all manually operated, one day I may upgrade to a motorized plumbing snake. Hopefully, I never clog a toilet so bad that I need a motorized snake to shake things up.
Draino Max Gel
I’m a fan of all their products, I have unclogged some nasty backups in the shower before with Draino. This makes the list at 4 because it’s not a common household item, otherwise, it’s the first thing I reach for if I know the pipes are clogged from hair and debris. Draino Max Gel is not something you use if there is a foreign object lodged in the pipe, nor is it used much in toilets. Draino is great for kitchen sinks that have grease and debris clogging up the pipes, it’s also good for bathroom sinks, and the hair clogs that typically happen in them. Pouring a bottle of Draino down the pipe and letting it sit for 15 minutes is a great way to get an idea of what you are dealing with. Small time clogs that have hair or grease building up will almost always be resolved with some liquid Draino, if the bottle doesn’t clear the clog, time to get a snake or hire a plumber.
Baking Soda and Salt
These are ingredients most of us have in our homes, and while it would make sense to rank it above Draino because of availability, it just hasn’t been as effective for me with my clogs. This is an effective unclogging method for new clogs. Maybe you gave the dog a bath, or maybe someone in the house shaved in the sink, or maybe someone dumped some bacon grease down the kitchen sink and didn’t run hot water with it. There could be many reasons like these that a drain could clog, having an accessible resource like baking soda, salt, and hot water available to address these issues promptly is a great start and can also be used as a preventative measure. The concoction is also pretty harmless, so there isn’t concerns about skin contact.