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Five Ways to Unclog a Drain at Home | Prime Plumbing

Just about all of us have watched in horror as water refuses to go down in our sink, tub, or floor drain thanks to a stubborn clog. And while your first instinct might be to panic, the solution to this persistent problem might be easier than you think. The next time you find yourself in this situation, try one of these five surefire home remedies for unclogging a drain.

Hot Water and Dish Soap for Drain Cleaning

This tip is ideal for kitchen sinks struggling with the gunky aftermath of months (or years) of dinner leftovers, however, you can use it for just about any drain. First, fill a tea kettle or pot with water and leave it on the stove until it boils. Next, you’ll want to remove any standing water that remains on top of the drain—one way to do this is by using a cup to scoop out the water and pour it into a nearby bucket. Then, you’ll want to squirt a good amount of dish soap down the drain to reach the area where the clog is located. After the soap sits for a few minutes, pour boiling water down the drain to flush out the soap—and hopefully the clog. It should be noted that while this method can be effective, it may take more than one attempt to fully unclog the drain.

Wire Coat Hanger to Clear a Drain Clog

You may have heard of a tool called a “drain snake,” often used by plumbers to dislodge hair, gunk, and other clog-causing materials. We understand that most people don’t have access to this type of tool in their homes, so we wanted to recommend a suitable alternative for drains like those you’d find in your tub. Your best bet is to use pliers to straighten a wire coat hanger into a long, single wire with the hook remaining on one end. When you stick the hook into the drain, slightly rotate it until you reach the point where you can go no farther. From there, give it another couple of good spins and bring the wire back up for cleaning. Once any materials have been removed from the wire, repeat this process until the problem is resolved.

How to Use a Wet/Dry Vacuum to Clean a Drain

A wet/dry vacuum can be a lifesaver in the event of a leak, but this useful tool also comes in handy when you have a clog in your sink or floor drain. Like the name implies, a wet/dry vacuum is functional when it comes to both liquids and solids, so it may be able to help displace any materials that have collected in the clog along with the blocked water. After you’ve covered the vacuum’s plughole, select the liquid setting and the most powerful suction possible. After a few minutes, chances are you’ll see a noticeable difference in how much is stuck in the drain.

Use a Two-Liter Bottle of Cola for Drain Clearing

Never underestimate the power of your favorite cola, which can do much more than just quench your thirst. In fact, the acidity in cola does well with stubborn blockages, as it can eat away at grime stuck to pipes. Just pour the entire bottle of room-temperature cola down the drain of your sink, tub, or floor drain, and let it sit for several hours to work its magic. One thing to note about this approach is that it can leave a sticky residue, so we suggest flushing your pipes with hot water and soap after the clog has been resolved to make sure any sugary remnants are washed away.

How to Use a Toilet Plunger to Clear a Drain

The plunger is a plumber’s—and homeowner’s—best friend. But what a lot of people don’t realize is that toilet plungers can be used for all types of drains. There are many kinds of plungers that fulfill several different needs. For instance, a cup plunger works well with a sink or floor drain. On the other hand, rubber plungers typically won’t scratch the surfaces they touch, but you do run the risk of scuffing materials if you use a plastic accordion plunger.

The five solutions discussed above are all alternatives to using harsh chemicals—and that’s by design. Even over-the-counter chemicals can erode and damage plumbing systems, so it’s best to avoid them whenever possible. If you find that these tips don’t work on your clogged drain, you have yet another option. You can always still reach out to the professionals at Prime Plumbing for your clogged drain or drain cleaning needs. Save time, call Prime!


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