Over time your drains will clog at one time or another—usually at the most inopportune times. It's important for a homeowner to know how to handle a clogged drain and what you can do to prevent it from happening to you. See below for tips on how to handle a clog and ways to prevent them.
Use Drain Stoppers. Always use the drain stopper to prevent larger pieces of food from being washed down the drain. These food pieces can get clogged down in your drain over time.
Pour Water Only. Only water should ever be washed down the drain, so don't pour grease or oils, which could clog the drain when they harden. Paint should also never be washed down the drain. Paint can also solidify and clog your drain.
Use Garbage Disposals Properly. Run your disposal with cool water only, never hot water. Hot water may melt foods, which can solidify later down your drain and cause a clog. Keep the blades on your disposal sharp by running ice cubes in the disposal once per week. Never place hard food items in the disposal such as husks, cobs, bones, or fruit pits, all of which can damage your disposal or clog it.
Use Drain Stoppers. Drain stoppers are important in the bathroom as well, as hair, soap, toothpaste lids, and other objects can be washed down these drains and cause a clog. To prevent hair from going into the drain, you can invest in a handy tool that sticks in the drain and catches hair.
Stick With Body Wash. Bar soap can be washed down the drain when they get to be too small, which can clog the drain. The soap scum from bar soap can also clog your sewer drain pipe, so stick with body wash, which doesn't cause this soap scum.
Use Toilet Paper Only. Keep non-toilet paper items out of the toilet drain, even if the manufacturer claims they are flushable. Your system may not be able to handle it. Things such as feminine hygiene products or flushable wipes should be tossed in the trash instead.
Clearing A Drain
To clear a clogged drain, there are a few things you can do.
- In sinks, use a drain clearing product to eat through the clog.
- In the toilet, use an accordion plunger—place the plunger over the drain opening, then pump it to get a good suction.
- In the shower/tub, use a drain clearing product or a snake to remove hair or soap caught inside the drain.
When in doubt, call a plumber for help with clogged drains in your home. You could also have an issue with roots in your drain, which may require professional help. For more information, contact local professionals like those found at Mr Rooter.