A blocked drain can be a minor inconvenience if it is a single sink, or a big deal if it's the main drain for the home. If you are like many homeowners, you may decide to attempt to clear the drain yourself. In this case, be aware of the following mistakes so that you can avoid them.
#1: Using the wrong snake device
A snake is a common way to clear a drain. Also called augers, these are whip-like wire tools that are attached to handles. The issue occurs when you use the wrong snake or use the right snake in the wrong manner. First and foremost, make sure the snake is designed for the drain. In other words, use only a toilet snake in a toilet or you may ruin the fixture.
Next, never put an auger down a curved pipe. If the sink, for example, is clogged, first remove the curved trap pipe beneath the sink and then insert the auger into the main pipe where it comes from the wall. Otherwise, the auger can punch a hole in the curved pipe. Finally, never try to rig your own snake from a bent hanger or similar.
#2: Trying a bunch of chemical concoctions
Highly caustic drain cleaners are readily available at nearly any store, but they usually aren't a great option. In many cases, the cleansers won't even be able to reach deep enough into the drain to reach the blockage before they become diluted with backed-up water. This then leads to a dangerous situation – if you try to plunge or mechanically clear the drain, you will now have to contend with these hazardous chemicals splashing out and onto you. Instead, try to clear the drain by slowly pouring boiling water down the pipe. This will dissolve soap scum and similar, just like a chemical cleaner.
#3: Ignoring the plunger type
Not all plungers are created equally, and the wrong one may not get the job done. Toilets, for example, require a bell-shaped plunger in order to produce enough suction to clear a blockage. For sinks and tubs, the stander half-circle style of plunger will work, but it has to be wide enough to fully cover the drain. You must also make sure any overflow openings, which are commonly just beneath the rim on sinks, are also covered. Otherwise, you won't be able to build up suction. You can stuff a rag into the hole or cover it with tape until you are done plunging.
For more help, contact a plumber in your area, such as one from Mr Rooter.Share
7 June 2017
My homes have always had either copper or PVC plumbing pipes. But when my plumbing system needed an overhaul last spring, I wanted a piping system for my home that I could work on myself when needed. There were a lot of good reasons to choose PEX piping, but my favorite thing about the PEX piping is that it's easy to work with, even if you're a beginner like me. Now I can make small repairs myself instead of calling the plumber every time I have a minor leak or other small problem. I still call the plumber for the big stuff, but it's more affordable now that I can take care of small issues myself. I started this blog to help others learn how they, too, can do DIY plumbing repairs at home.