How to Unclog a Drain Naturally
If you have standing water in your shower, sink or bathtub you might have a clogged drain. Things like hair, dirt and debris can easily create back-ups, causing clogs. There are many ways to unclog a drain and one of the most effective and easy ways to do this is with a drain cleaning solution. You can go to your local store and purchase drain cleaner, but you can also make a natural drain cleaner at home. Creating a homemade drain cleaner is easy and can be effective in unclogging small blockages.
TRY USING A PLUNGER FIRST
Using the proper kind of plunger for your drain - and yes, there are plungers that are appropriate to use on a sink. They are usually red rubber and have a shallow suction cup. Plunging the drain may be all you need to do. The suction could force the clog away, leaving you with a clear drain.
If the plunger isn't enough, follow these steps to unclog your drain without harsh chemicals:
TOOLS AND SUPPLIES
You can easily clean drains with baking soda and vinegar along with some hot water. Using the recipe below you can create a natural drain cleaner at home:
- ½ cup of Baking soda
- 1 cup of Vinegar
- Hot Water
INSTRUCTIONS FOR UNCLOGGING DRAIN NATURALLY
When a simple hand drain cleaning isn’t enough, sometimes, a natural drain cleaner will do the job. Making a chemical-free, homemade drain cleaner, can be done easily with just a few simple, common household items. Follow these steps:
- Remove stopper
- Pour half a cup of baking soda directly into the drain.
- Pour a cup of vinegar directly into the drain. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes.
- Start Boiling a pot a water.
- Once boiled, pour the hot water directly into the drain.
- If necessary, repeat this process another time or two.
- Replace stopper
You may need to repeat the process a second for third time for really stubborn clogs. If you are still experiencing a blockage, contact your local Roto-Rooter because there could be a larger undetected problem.
WHY DOES THIS WORK?
As you will see, you can indeed clean drains with baking soda and vinegar. The reason this works is due to the combination of the chemical reaction that occurs when baking soda and vinegar are combined along with a flush of hot water. When baking soda and vinegar are together they create a frenzied reaction which helps loosen debris that is causing a blockage in the drain. Pouring the hot water on top of this reaction takes it a step further and helps flush the drain.
CALL A PLUMBING PROFESSIONAL IF THE NATURAL DRAIN CLEANER DIDN'T WORK
If the natural drain cleaner solution didn't work and you have tried all other methods for unclogging the drain, it is time to call the plumbing professionals at Roto-Rooter. We are here to help 24/7 including holidays when you need service most. Our team of expert plumbers are here to handle all of your residential plumbing needs. We will come out to assess the situation and give you a timeline and cost for repairs.
DO HOMEMADE DRAIN CLEANERS REALLY WORK?
In the event of a clogged pipe, you may reach for one of many choices available at any big box store or you may reach for a more natural alternative. For those who reach for the more natural choice, they may choose to do so to save money, help protect the environment or avoid chemical smells and fumes. These are all valid reasons to create your own drain cleaner from household materials, but do they really work?
The first factor to consider is what is causing the blockage in the first place. If you have a foreign object, such as jewelry or large pieces of food, a homemade drain cleaner is certainly not going to help you, and a more costly chemical cleaner wouldn’t either. Of course it isn’t always possible to know what caused the clog, but when you do know you’ll want to choose a cleaner or method that corresponds accordingly.
The next factor to consider is what other methods you have already used in order to break down the clog. First try using a plunger on the drain. In the event that this does not dislodge the blockage, try using a sewer snake, or auger. Be sure to also clean the sink’s trap. Once you’ve exhausted all these efforts, you are ready to try a drain cleaning product.
A homemade drain cleaner is usually a mix of several ingredients, mainly: baking soda, vinegar, hot water and/or salt. These products will often produce the same results as commercial products, but you will need to allow for more time and more applications. It does seem that homemade drain cleaners are more suited for preventative measures than for damage control because once a large blockage of organic gunk has accumulated it may be too much for baking soda and vinegar to work through.
In the event that you’re ready to give drain cleaners a try and you don’t know whether a homemade concoction will work, it doesn’t hurt to try and then move on to something stronger if needed. They do cost less and make fewer impacts on the environment.