There are few things more frustrating than soapy water pooling at your feet in the shower or greasy water sitting stagnant in your kitchen sink. The cause? A dirty or blocked drain. Prevention is better than cure, and if you clean your drains regularly, you will keep them flowing freely and avoid blockages.
Before you rush to grab a bottle of chemical drain cleaner, consider your options. There are several products you can use to clean your drain, many of which you may have on hand at home!
Enzymatic cleaners contain live bacteria that are known for their fat, grease, oil and soap scum fighting capabilities. They are generally slower to clear the drain and may take a few repeat uses, but are less harsh on your plumbing system and the environment than harmful chemicals.
A combination of bi-carb soda and vinegar is always handy to have on hand to tackle minor blockages and to use regularly to keep drains clear. For an intense treatment, let sit in the drain overnight before flushing with hot water.
This combination is particularly effective for greasy kitchen sink blockages. The grease fighting dish soap effectively loosens greasy buildups in the pipes, eating away at the clog.
A snake is great for bathroom and shower drains where physical blockages such as hair can quickly cause drains to stop flowing freely. Use the snake to loosen the clog by pushing it down the drain until you feel resistance, then twist the snake until it latches on to the clog and use it to loosen and pull it out.
If your blockage is more than a snake can handle and caused by a physical object, such as a children’s toy finding its way into the toilet bowl, you can use a plunger to attempt to dislodge the object.