Have a clogged drain that needs repair? The solution may be simpler than you think! Drain unclogging is often just a matter of using basic household objects to loosen whatever material is causing the problem. In this guide, we will reveal some tried and true DIY drain unclogging tips that may clear your plumbing right up.
Use a Plunger for Drain Unclogging
Perhaps the easiest way to unclog a drain is to use a plunger to apply pressure in the plumbing. Whether you’re dealing with a clogged sink or a bathtub drain, you can always try using a plunger to loosen the blockage.
Fill your sink or tub with a little bit of water, about enough to cover the top of the plunger. If you are unclogging one side of a double sink, plug the other side with a towel to ensure that the pressure does not escape through that side of the piping. Put the plunger directly over the drain and use it just like you would in a toilet. Pump it gently, up and down a few times, if necessary, to get rid of the clog. If all goes well, the water that you put in the sink or tub will rush down the drain, carrying anything that remains of the clog along with it.
Of course, you should clean your sink/tub and your plunger after completing this task to reduce the risk of contamination.
Remove Hair with Needle Nose Pliers (for Bathtub Drains)
If your bathtub is clogged or not draining efficiently, you may have a ball of hair hanging around the drain. Getting rid of this clog is not a glamorous process, but it is something you can potentially do on your own. Start by removing the top of the stopper. For most tubs, there is a small screw on the side, just below the top of the stopper, that you can loosen to pull it off. This will give you access to the area underneath the plug, where the hair is likely trapped.
Using a set of needle nose pliers, you should be able to get in between the grates under the stopper and pull out anything that’s blocking your water flow. Don’t be surprised if you find some pretty gross items, like old bandages or wads of soap scum. Throw away anything that you pull out. Run some water to see if it drains better, and then re-secure the top of the stopper with a screwdriver.
If the water does not run properly, you may want to consider calling a plumber to do a more thorough unclogging job or inquire about Drain Cleaning services.
Try Baking Soda and Vinegar for Drain Unclogging
Remember that volcano you made for your elementary school science fair? In this trick, you’re essentially creating one of those to unclog your drain. Clear out as much water from the clogged area as possible using a bucket and towels. Put abut a cup of baking soda in the drain and pack it down with a spatula or wooden spoon. Pour a cup of vinegar into the drain and immediately place the stopper on top to plug it up.
This will direct all the pressure downward to help get rid of the clog. Leave the mixture to set for about five minutes, and then run hot water through the pipes. If it worked, you should have a clear pathway and an unclogged drain.
Call in a Professional
If you feel like you’re in over your head or the DIY drain unclogging tips above just don’t cut it, call in a professional plumber to take care of the problem. You could actually make the clog worse by continuing to try to maneuver it. Abbott’s Plumbing provides drain cleaning services from Baltimore to Towson, Dundalk and beyond. Check out our drain cleaning special or contact Abbott’s Plumbing for a free quote, and one of our local plumbers would be more than happy to assist you.