Our household drains are like our cars. (Hear us out.) You probably don’t often consider the finer mechanics of your car. Generally, you just enjoy the use of your car and take for granted that everything is functioning properly. It’s a similar story for our drains. We don’t really think much about our drains until they get backed up. You’re washing dishes or bathing and suddenly realize the water is not draining as it should. Now, instead of getting on with your day, you have to try to troubleshoot this problem. On top of the inconvenience, a clogged drain can be quite expensive to fix!
Though some clogs are inevitable and may require removal by a professional, there are some tips we like to give our customers to keep them from having to deal with frequent drain clogs.
To continue the analogy from above, we recommend thinking about your drains like your car. Currently, the key difference is that we all know our cars require regular maintenance like oil changes, but many people don’t think to regularly maintain their drains. Yes, they usually work with no problems, but problems start occurring when we skip out on regular maintenance. Keeping your drains free of clogs requires taking a preventative approach.
For a kitchen sink, we recommend pouring boiling hot water down the drain every week or so. This can help break up lingering grime that eventually creates clogs. If this doesn’t work well enough for you, try pouring a half cup of baking soda and then a half cup of vinegar down your drain. Let the chemical reaction work its magic for a few minutes and complete the job by flushing hot water down the drain. These steps won’t guarantee that you’ll never experience another clog again, but they should certainly help to cut down on the annoying frequency of clogs.
Keep Clogging Culprits Out of Your Drains
There are a handful of substances that are notorious for causing clogs in drains. Grease is one of the worst culprits. When grease, especially if it’s warm, is poured down your drain, it can adhere to the pipes and begin to block the path of whatever else is going down the drain. Eventually, the accumulation of grease and other matter gets to be too large of a clog for your sink to drain properly.
Also beware of sending items like eggshells, coffee grounds, and meat down your drain. It’s better to just dispose of these items in the trash rather than risk creating a potential clog. In your shower, soap and hair also have a tendency to meld together and cause a lot of backups. Installing a mesh screen to stop this hair from getting into the drain in the first place will substantially help to keep your shower drain from clogging.
In one of our recent blog posts, we address the common question of whether chemical drain cleaners are effective or safe to use. In brief, we conclude that, though there are times in which drain cleaners may get the job done, their potential damage to your pipes and the environment make them products we don’t recommend for our customers. Whether you’re trying to prevent clogs from occurring or unclogging a backup, we recommend using a plunger or a homemade chemical solution like the one we mentioned above.
Need help clearing a stubborn clogged drain? Stephens Plumbing professionals can help! Call us at (630) 968-0783 or schedule an appointment online to have your drain functioning normally again in no time!