What To Do When You Have A Clogged Shower Drain
Clogged shower drains are uncomfortable, to say the least. While shampooing your hair, you may smell a terrible odor coming out of the drain, or notice youre standing in a few inches of water each time the water runs. Not only that, but the clog will cause water to drain slowly. Rather than having the day washed away and circulating down your plumbing as its meant to do, the collection of dirt, soap, and hair from your shower will sit in its basepossibly causing a grimy stain on the shower floor.
Cleaning out your shower every day is an annoyance, and shouldnt be necessary. Instead, read on to discover useful tips provided by our expert Long Island plumber about clogged shower drains and how to treat them, deal with a clog, and prevent drain from happening again.
Homemade Sink Drain Cleaner
Can vinegar clean a clogged drain? Not without reacting with baking soda. But when it comes to cleaning sink drains, there are some additional methods you can try.
If its the kitchen sink that you are trying to unclog, chances are the pipe has grease deposits. Try the following solutions before calling a plumber:
How To Fix A Clogged Shower Drain: Diy Solutions
There are plenty of do-it-yourself solutions to unclogging a shower drain. In this section, well go over some of the popular methods.
However, keep in mind that if the clog is big enough, or deep enough, then you might not be able to get it with these tactics. When this happens you should consider contacting a professional plumber.
Clogged Drain Home Remedy: 5 Ways To Diy
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Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you were having a nice warm shower and then your tub drain got jammed and dirty water didnt go away?
Or when you had a lot of dishes to do, but you just couldnt because the sink drain was clogged?
Yes, all of this can sometimes be very frustrating, because you would have to spend the money on repairs instead spending it on something far more enjoyable.
Well, fear not! We are here to present you some of the ways, which you can personally use to deal with a clogged drain.
Why Use A Home Remedy For Clogged Drain
When it comes to cleaning clogged drains, natural products are safer than most chemical-based cleaners, which contain sulfuric acid and sodium hydroxide.
As we said, these jarring drain cleaning chemicals eat away the pipework over time. By eroding your plumbing, they will cause even more issues in the long run, and not just clogged drains.
Another factor to consider is that drain cleaners with chemicals end up in the local waterways. There, they can easily damage animal and plant habitats. They can kill sensitive species, as well as cause genetic mutations.
In addition, a lot of these products contain chemicals that produce hazardous fumes.
Commercial drain cleaners are more expensive, too. Using a costly chemical drain cleaner that will damage your pipes and pollute waterways doesnt seem like the best decision, does it?
Home remedies and homemade cleaners are safer, cost-effective, and can be created out of items you already have at home like baking soda and hot water. By opting for these instead of commercial products, you will protect the environment as well as clean your clogged drains. Its a win-win-win situation!
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Flush With More Hot Water
After the fizzing subsides, wait five minutes. Use this time to heat two cups of water to boiling. Flush the drain with this additional boiling water.
If the drain is now flowing, run hot tap water to flush all debris down the drain. If it is not draining, repeat the previous steps. If you haven’t cleaned your drain recently, it may be necessary to repeat the baking soda flush at least twice.
If a drain clog doesn’t clear after two or more attempts, use the baking soda and salt method described below.
The Spruce / Theresa Chiechi
How To Unclog A Drain For Good
2. If that doesn’t work, move on to chemical drain cleaner, like Liquid-Plumr Power Gel and follow the manufacturer’s directions accordingly.
More From Good Housekeeping
3. And if you’re still out of luck, Carolyn Forte, director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab, says it’s time to enlist the pros. “After that, call a professional plumber and tell them what you used. That way, there won’t be any surprises.”
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Art Plumbing Air Conditioning & Electrics Professional Drain Clearing Solutions
While regular maintenance can help prevent blockages to an extent, sometimes a professional drain cleaning is the best way to keep your drains in tip-top shape. And, if your shower drain keeps clogging, it may be a sign of a blockage in your main sewer line, which if left unattended to can cause serious damage to your home and sewer system. Art Plumbing, Air Conditioning & Electric offers a range of drain clearing and cleaning solutions. We use hydro-jetting technology and rooters to clear out blockages, depending on the severity of the blockage. We have years of experience in dealing with drain maintenance, drain cleaning, and main line sewer blockage repair.
How To Unclog Your Drain Using Boiling Water
- Boil water on the stove.
- Pour the boiling water down the drain.
- It’s best to use a funnel or something to contain the water as you pour. If you have any expense shower or bathtub accessories, you don’t want to spill boiling water on them.
Note: Used on its own, this method may not work, especially if you are dealing with a serious blockage has built up over time and contains a lot of matted hair. However, it may partially clear the blockage, or work fully when used in conjunction with another method listed below.
Pour boiling water down the drain to clear out a clog.
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What Causes A Drain To Become Clogged
A clogged shower drain is usually caused by a clump of knotted hair, dirt, grease, and/or soap. In addition to binding the clog together, the hair can wrap around parts of the drain and makes the blockage difficult to move.
Clogs occur much more frequently in homes where one or more of the shower users has long hair, as short hair is much less likely to get caught in the drain system.
Less common causes of clogs include a mineral buildup in the drain, and the main drainage pipes being compromised by invading tree roots, and/or general decay.
How To Unclog A Shower Drain Using Baking Soda And Vinegar
- Pour a cup of baking soda down the drain.
- Wait for a few minutes.
- Pour a cup of vinegar down the drain too.
- Wait for a couple of hours to see if the hair clog gets dissolved.
- Clean out the drain by pouring boiling water down it.
Note: Although this method is ecologically preferable, and won’t cause damage to plastic pipes, you may still end up having to resort to chemicals.
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Enzyme Drain Cleaner A Ready To Use Natural Solution
Although the above-mentioned homemade combinations are pretty easy to prepare, there might be cases when you need a ready-to-use solution. This is when enzyme drain cleaners come in handy.
Enzyme drain cleaners contain enzyme-producing bacteria, different kinds of enzymes, and sometimes plant extracts instead of toxic chemicals. Most of the work is done by the enzymes that break down organic substances, such as food particles and molds, into smaller pieces in the pipe. They also dissolve hair to some extent.
One major advantage of enzyme drain cleaners over most homemade remedies is that they usually come in a gel formula that is heavier than water so they easily get through standing water.
You can find many enzyme drain cleaners on the market, some of the most popular brands are Green Gobbler, Biokleen, and ECOS Earth Enzymes Drain Cleaner.
If you like DIY natural cleaners and exercising, make sure you also check out our article about the most effective homemade natural gym equipment cleaners here.
Unclog Your Drain With A Drain Snake
You can try a drain snake if the plunger doesnt work to unclog your sink or shower drain. A drain snake is a special cable coil that uses a drilling movement to break through the grime in your pipes. We recommend only using this method if you are good with your hands. You have to be very careful not to damage the pipe.
- Gently insert the coil through the drain opening to avoid accidentally damaging the pipe.
- Slowly turn the handle to advance the snake while applying slight pressure toward the drain.
- Once you feel a firm resistance, pull the spiral back a little bit, then push it towards the drain again.
- If you cannot unclog the drain, it might be time to consult a professional plumber. Some clogs are just too persistent to be removed without professional tools.
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Use A Homemade Drain Cleaner
- Many drain cleaners dont work as well as they are advertised. They also contain harmful and corrosive chemicals which can ruin your pipe. The fumes that these cleaners release are also harmful for your health. The best alternative is to use a homemade drain cleaner.
Add a little bit of baking soda into the clogged drain and then pour vinegar over it. It causes a chemical reaction resulting in bubbling and fizzing. Leave it in your drain for about 30 mins and then pour boiling water in the drain. Majority of shower drain clogs are fixed using this remedy.
What Causes Clogged Shower Drains
A lot of things go down our shower drains that we dont think about. For example, the soap that we use every day is usually lined with grease, fats, or oils of some sort.
Over time, this material builds up in our drain and attaches to other types of debris. Body hair, dirt, and mineral deposits get caught in these fat pockets. If these clogs get big enough in weak pipes, then they can even cause leaks.
One small leak can waste 10,000 gallons of water a year. On top of that, they also attract roots systems growing under your house. Small roots can grow into these cracks which causes even more clogging.
As such, you must fix it as soon as possible. If you suspect that your pipes are leaking, then make sure to consult our guide first.
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Remedy #: Use A Plunger To Unclog The Shower Drain
A plunger is one of the best home remedies to unclog a shower drain. You could use a plunger to try to remove the clog, or at least to bring it closer to the drain opening so you can remove it by hand.
Place the base of your plunger over the drain opening, run some water, then start pumping up and down. Do this for a few minutes, then check if you can reach the clog. If you cant see it at all, run some hot water to verify if your shower drain is still clogged.
The Caring For And Keeping Of An Unclogged Drain
Now that you’ve gotten rid of that nasty clog, you’ll want to keep your drain nice and clean, so it’s not a repeat offender.
Follow up any clog removal efforts with a full scrub down of your sink. Remember to keep your sink clean and free of debris. If you don’t have a garbage disposal, make sure you scrape off your plates before rinsing them in the sink.
Since it makes a fantastic drain cleaner, pour any leftover soda down your drain. This is a surefire way to prevent future clogs.
Use a mixture of baking soda and vinegar about once a week on your drain. The mixture will not only break up any greasy buildup in your pipes but will also help keep the room smelling nice and fresh. By using household products like baking soda in your drain, you will not only have a cleaner smelling kitchen, but you also won’t have the unexpected expense of having to call a plumber.
Best of luck clearing up your drain and keeping it that way!
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The Best Ways To Unclog Your Shower Drain
If you find yourself standing in water while trying to take a relaxing shower, you may have a clog in your shower drain that is keeping the water from exiting properly. Hair is the biggest enemy of the shower drain, so the chances are good that it could be the root of your problem. Before you call a plumber to save the day, here are some of the best ways to unclog the shower drain yourself.
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There are several ways to unclog a shower drain, but before you get started, youll need to remove the drain screen or stopper to gain access to the drain. Usually, a screwdriver is all thats required to dismantle the screen, stopper, or cover. Sometimes a hair clog will come up with the screen or stopper, and the problem is solved.
If that doesn’t do the trick, look down the drain to see if you can find whats causing the problem. Turn on an overhead light or use a flashlight to inspect the drain. Once you’ve found the culprit, use one of these five home remedies to unclog the shower drain.
How Do You Minimize Mess When Unclogging A Shower Drain
Prep work is essential for preventing a clogged drain from turning into a big mess. When gathering your supplies, Tavanian suggests grabbing a few extra rags, a drop cloth to keep your shower floor protected, and a bucket to carry dirty tools in. As for the work itself, he tells DIYers to go slow and proceed cautiously. No one wants a hair clog flung around . Take your time so you can be neat and focused on what you are doing, he urges.
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How To Get Rid Of And Prevent Smells In A Shower Drain
Shower drain odors are caused by sewage gas, bacteria, or mold. If you have a guest bathroom that isn’t used often, the shower drain P-trap can become dry and allow sewer gas to escape. This is easily solved by running the shower for a few minutes each month or so.
Odors can also come from the soap scum that is allowed to build-up in the pipes. The scum and the dark, moist conditions are the perfect feeding ground for odor-causing bacteria and mold. Regular use and monthly cleaning of a shower will keep odors at bay.
Baking Soda + Vinegar
- Everyone knows that baking soda mixed with vinegar makes excellent volcanoes, but what many people don’t know is that it also makes great clog remover. Sprinkle equal parts of baking soda and white vinegar down your drain. Let this bubble in your drain overnight and flush it out with hot water in the morning.
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Home Remedy #: Plumbers Snake
Sometimes you need the big guns or, in this case, the big snake. A plumbers snake is a flexible auger designed to fit down drains and clear blockages. There are several types, from hand augers to electric ones, and they can clear small clogs up to roots sticking through the pipes.
Feed the snake down the pipe until you feel it stop. This should be the blockage. Then you operate the auger by hand or power, and it will spin and break up the clog fairly easily using the corkscrew-shaped head. You can buy or rent these for home use.
The best thing to do once your shower drain is clear is to prevent it from happening again. Here are a few ways to achieve that.
- Use a drain cover
- Dont wash soap chunks down the drain
- Only use the drain for showering, not rinsing away food debris or dirt
- Avoid body oils as they can easily harden in the drain pipes
- Do regular maintenance by using your DIY mix and boiling water on the drain once a month
Nobody wants to fill up the shower pan or tub while showering. By following these six proven methods, you will have your shower draining perfectly, just in time to practice singing your favourite rock ballad.
Purchase A Shower Snake
A shower snake is a device that is fed into your shower drain to push apart blocking debris. Shower snakes are very effective at drain cleaning and can unclog a shower drain quickly.
Purchase a long drain snake and remove the drain cap. Then, feed it through. You may notice that it gets hung up at times. When it feels like it is blocked, pull it out a little bit and try to push through whatever is blocking it. Do this a few times and then pull it out. Test your drain by running your shower with hot water to see if you made a difference. See this post if you need more help in learning how to use it.
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