How to Clear a Blocked Drain

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Today we are going to go over how to clear a blocked drain as at some point all householders have found that their sinks, bath or shower trays are draining slowly or not at all. When this happens there is a good possibility that you have a blocked drain resulting either from a build of waste or something becoming lodged in your pipework.

Regular drain maintenance is important if you want to keep your home in good condition. As soon as you suspect you have a blocked drain you should clear it as quickly as possible to avoid more expensive repairs being needed further down the line. In some cases you may be able to clear a blocked drain quickly without needing to call the professionals. So, in this article we thought we would give you a few examples of how you can unblock a drain yourself without getting hit in the pocket. 

How to Clear a Blocked DrainUsing Baking Soda and Vinegar to Unblock Drains

If you are looking for a home-made natural remedy for unblocking drains then baking soda and vinegar is up there with the best. The fact that many people already have these ingredients in the home makes it not only convenient but also very cost-effective. To make your drain unblocking solution, combine 1/3 of a cup of baking soda with 1/3 of a cup of vinegar. As soon as you mix the two together, they should begin to fizz, so don’t delay and pour the mixture directly down the sink. For the best results, let it sit for an hour or perhaps overnight. Finally, thoroughly rinse it with hot water.

Alternatively Salt and Baking Soda

Nearly every household will have salt in its kitchen cupboards, and when you mix it with baking soda it will provide you with a very effective drain clearing option. All you need to do is pour half a cup of baking soda mixed with half a cup of table salt down the blocked drain. After letting it sit for 10 to 20 minutes, pour boiling water down the drain. When these three components are combined, a chemical reaction will occur that should dissolve some of the nasty obstructions you are encountering.

Using a Plunger to Unblock Your Drain 

Before calling out a drainage engineer it is always worth going back to basics with this age-old technique. Plungers are an ingenious device for clearing out any obstructions in your drains. They occasionally do need some stamina and perseverance. It may need a few tries, but for many years now Plungers have been one of the most effective tools when it comes to residential drain unblocking.

Try Removing the U Bend

This method of clearing a blockage is a little more complicated, so if you’re not comfortable removing a drain pipe, you should probably give it a miss. However, the process is quite straightforward. Underneath the sink is a U Shaped pipe and you need to place an empty bucket below it. Any water loss, or leaks that happen throughout the operation will be captured in the bucket. The slide nuts on the pipe’s two ends can be loosened with a wrench to allow for pipe removal. You might need to search into the pipes for any buried debris; a useful tool for this is an old toothbrush. Reassemble everything after giving the pipes a thorough after rinse. This will typically clear your drain completely.

Chemical Drain Clearing Products 

If you have tried the aforementioned remedies without any luck, your drain could need something a little more potent, like a chemical cleaner. Chemical drain cleaners are readily available in most DIY stores and supermarkets. Pour it down the drain and let it sit for a few hours or overnight so it can function. Once the process is complete, run hot water through the sink to ensure a beautiful, functional, cleared drain.

Try Using a Drain Snake 

Another very useful tool for unblocking drains is the drain snake. It is a long, plastic stick with hooks facing upward that, when inserted into the drain, removes things like matted hair and soap scum as you raise the stick back up. This is an excellent and relatively inexpensive method  for removing clutter from your drain pipes and getting your waste water flowing freely again. 

What if You Still Can’t Clear your Drains 

There will be occasions when none of the methods listed above will work. This is because either the blockage is too large or complex or you may be unable to locate it. In these circumstances it advisable to contact a professional drainage company. Drainage professionals have both the specialist equipment and expertise to clear even the most stubborn blockages. For example in the case of unexplained drainage issues they will use specialist drain cameras to perform a CCTV drain survey to precisely locate the problem. Once this is done your drains can be cleared quickly using powerful water jets or hard wearing drainage rods.

 It is always worth remembering the importance of clearing blockages quickly as once the problem escalates repairs can become much more complicated and expensive. Hopefully you have found the information in this article useful, and one of the methods we have highlighted above will be successful in clearing your blocked drains. However, if not make sure you speak to drain unblocking professionals as soon as possible. 

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