Try To Pull The Clog Out With Your Hands
Using your hands is the easiest way to unclog a shower drain without tools. Remove the drain cover first, and assess the clog. If it looks like a tangled clump of soapy hair, you can easily pull that out of the drain. Make sure you get as much of the debris out of the drain as you can.
Once all of the debris has been removed, use a flashlight to make sure the drain looks clear. Replace the drain cover and run water through your drain to make sure it flows properly.
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.
Remove Hair Or Debris
If the drain is still clogged, the problem may be a soapy clump of tangled hair that you can pull out of the drain with your fingers. You can pull it out even if water is standing in the shower, as long as the water is not too hot to touch.
If the clog is too far down to reach with your fingers, unscrew or pry up the drain cover. Then straighten out a wire coat hanger and make a small hook at the end. Put it into the drain and fish out any debris. Use a flashlight, if needed, to help you see into the drain.
Once you’ve gotten out as much debris as you can, carefully pour another kettle full of boiling water down the drain, a little at a time. Again, do not use boiling water if you have PVC pipes.
Replace the drain cover and run the water in the shower to see if the clog has been cleared.
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What To Do If You Suspect A Clogged Shower Drain
If you have removed things blocking the drain and it is open, but water is not going down the drain, then there is a clog.
How To Use Hot Water And Washing Up Liquid To Unclog A Drain
Some people dont believe that baking soda/vinegar helps that much. Mixing hot water and washing up liquid is a strong alternative. Follow the same steps outlined above, but instead of mixing vinegar and baking soda, simply mix a cup of hot water with some washing up liquid instead.
If you follow our steps, this should fix your issue and your drains should be unclogged!
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Remove And Clean The P
This method works for both the bathroom sink and kitchen sink. If you therefore have a clogged sink with standing water, this could be the fastest way of unclogging it.
If you look under your sink, you will notice that there is a U-shaped pipe. That is what we call the P-trap or drain trap. Actually tubs, showers and washing machine also have P-traps only that they are not easily accessible.
P-traps hold water at all times preventing sewer gases from entering the house but they also trap solids which would otherwise end up clogging the drain line farther away.
As I had mentioned earlier, whenever you have a clogged drain, most of the time the clog is usually inside the P-trap. By removing and cleaning the P-trap you will have cleared the clog.
This is how to remove and clean a P-trap of a clogged sink drain:
- If you have stored items under the sink remove them.
- Place a bucket under the P-trap. That is for draining the water already in the P-trap instead of spilling it on the floor.
- Disconnect the 2 P-trap connections. Always attempt to use your bare hands before reaching for a wrench.
- Use a flexible wire brush to clean the P-trap as well as the tail piece and the drain line exiting through the wall.
- Connect back the P-trap.
- Turn on the sink faucet and check if the sink is draining as fast as it should. Also check if the P-trap is leaking .
And basically that is how to unclog a drain with standing water naturally.
Clear The Drain Using Baking Soda And Vinegar
Baking soda and vinegar are actually very effective in unclogging drains naturally. The 2 products are not only safe for your plumbing but they are also eco-friendly and septic-safe.
Baking soda being is an alkali while vinegar is a weak acid and the two will react together in a fizzing reaction and in the process break down the clog.
Although baking soda and vinegar will clear the drain on their own, I also like adding hot water in the mix. What you may not know as well is that boiling water can clear most drain clogs.
Boiling water melts the grease in kitchen sink drains and melts hair balls in bathroom sink, bathtub and shower drains thereby clearing the clog.
- Drain the clogged fixture completely. If you still have water in the clogged fixture, drain it out. You want the baking soda and vinegar to work directly on the clog.
- Pour 1 cup of baking soda slowly followed by another cup of vinegar.
- Wait for about 15 minutes for the clog to be broken down.
- Meanwhile, start boiling about a gallon or more of water.
- Dump the hot water in the drain.
Note: Avoid pouring boiling water in a toilet bowl. The water will cause a sudden expansion of the china and hence the bowl will crack.
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Stop Standing Water From Resurging
After all that hard work, you will never want to unclog a drain with standing water again. So, fight for clear bathtub and shower drain pathways. Focus on keeping drain clogs away, and the standing water will never return. For best results, follow these tips regularly. These tips are the one-two punch combo to help you fight the battle.
Wear a shower cap. Your hair disrupts water flow once it gets stuck in the drain. Avoid this by wearing a shower cap. If you prefer hair wet in the shower, comb and brush your hair before entering the shower. This will collect most of the hair now to prevent hair from clogging the drain later.
Take non-flushable objects out of the tub and shower. Take toys, toothpaste tops, toothbrushes, hair bows, hair clips, and electronics out of the tub when not in use. Manually remove solid waste such as hair, toilet tissue, wipes, napkins, paper towels, and paper and transfer them to the wastebasket.
Stop pouring dirty water down the drain. Dirty water such as mop water, wastewater, and foot soak water contains dirt and debris that will clog drains. Pour water outside instead.
Let the hot water run for two minutes. It cleans the drain of oil-based products like shower gels, body washes, shampoos, and conditioners stuck to the pipe’s interior structure. It also removes soap scumbuild-up. Turn off the hot water for five minutes, and turn the hot water back on to run for two minutes again.
How To Fix Your Slow Shower Drain
A slow-draining shower is typically caused by a clog or block in the drain. But here are some easy solutions that can help you resolve this issue.
The most unpleasant feeling is standing in an ankle-deep pool of dirty, soapy water right after your shower, thanks to slow shower drains!
If you can relate to this frustration, chances are your shower drain has a clog. A shower drain clog can be a small blockage or a major problem with your main sewer line.
Once you find that the former is the issue, you can fix the clog immediately. Thats why we are here with four easy steps that will help clear the drain and reduce the chances of any future clogs.
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What Not To Do With A Clogged Drain
A professional should always treat clogs caused by deeper build-ups in your underground pipes. There are no heroes in drain cleaning – don’t start taking apart your shower drain or jamming a long cable down it out of frustration. Here’s what to avoid if you don’t want to explain an embarrassing situation when calling a plumber.
Why Standing Water Is Problematic
Besides slow draining water, standing water is a primary telltale sign of a drain clog. The clog creates a tight blockage inside the pipe where no water passes. Unlike slow-to-drain water, standing water stays inside the bathtub or shower and doesn’t move.
Standing water is often unclean. The dirty water sits, infected with bacteria, can turn into ground zero for mildew and mold. It also carries a foul odor that begins where the clog occurs and ends inside the bathtub or shower. The smell pollutes the air, causing allergic reactions, asthma flare-ups, and respiratory problems once inhaled.
This chain reaction can occur as quickly as a few hours and as late as two days, and it will worsen if it sits longer than that.
Flies, dragonflies, and mosquitoes love standing water and will fly into your home through the window or door if it’s open for ventilation. Mosquitoes and flies can bring bacteria and disease to the water, making standing water even more hazardous.
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The Signs Of The Clogged Drain
So, how to know that there is a clogged drain inside your bathroom?
Well, the sign is pretty straightforward if you ask me. After having a shower inside your shower system, you will start noticing that the water is standing inside the shower which implies that the water is not getting the way to flow.
That happens when there is a blockage inside the pipe of the shower.
This is the sign that should be counted as a clear indication of a clogged drain inside your shower.
Some clog is pretty simple to get rid of.
But when you notice this a regular scenario inside your shower, then it clearly signifies there are multiple clogs in the shower drain.
Some clogs can be so deep that it would be very hard for you to reach them without the help of a plumber. So, when you think it is necessary then without any further delay you can always call a professional plumber to do the job on your behalf.
How To Unclog A Shower Drain With A Plumbers Snake
Sometimes the best way to unclog a shower drain is with a drain snake, sometimes called a manual auger or electric auger. If it’s electric, you’ll need a power drill to run the plumber’s snake. If it’s manual, you’ll have to turn the handle by hand to operate it.
As you figure out how to snake a shower drain, insert the snake into the drain until it hits the clog. Turn the handle clockwise to hook the clog and continue running the snake down the drain. When you start to feel resistance, that means the snake is picking up clogs. When the resistance lessens, that often means the snake has cleared the drain. Give the handle one more full turn to ensure the clog is hooked. Then turn the handle counterclockwise to back the snake out of the drain. Go slowly, so you don’t lose the clog.
When the snake is completely out, remove the debris. Run hot water down the drain to test that the clog is completely gone and replace the drain cover.
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Avoid Using A Chemical Drain Cleaner
Chemical drain cleaners are usually what people opt for initially whenever they spot a blockage in their drain pipe. Although they come across as quick and affordable solutions to fix clogged drains, they are far from being a sustainable alternative.
These drain cleaners use harsh caustic chemicals that damage the drain pipes and shower fittings and seriously threaten your health. If the drain clogs dont dissolve after multiple attempts using the tips mentioned above, it is advised that you to resolve the issue.
Check Bathtub Drain For Visible Blockages
While you may be in a hurry to get unclog a bathtub drain check for blockages first. Whether youve given your child a bath or the family pet, you might be surprised by whats clogging the drain.
With some types of tubs, the bathtub stopper could be the problem. The toe-touch or pop-up mechanism could be stuck, even though it appears to be okay. If the drain stopper isnt the issue, you might be able to see or feel a visible blockage in the drain.
Small bath toys, pieces of sponges, and hair can become stuck around the cross-member in a drain flange.
Push-pull stoppers should unscrew in a counter-clockwise fashion, but other types of stoppers may have a set screw holding the top in place.
If you dont feel a blockage or the water level doesnt drop with its removal, its time to get a few supplies together.
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Preventing A Clogged Tub Drain
A few ways to proactively fight potential clogging in your tub include:
- Using a drain cover: these tools catch debris like hair from overloading your drain, letting you toss it aside and into your trash bin as opposed to flushing it through your drain line.
- Avoid oily bath products: body oils are a common ingredient for a clogged drain. Mix it with hair, soap scum, and other common cloggers, and youll likely need to call a plumber shortly.
- Limit your waste: if you get into the habit of emptying waste bins into your tub and washing it down your drain, more significant bits and clumps of dust and dirt will find a way to add to any oncoming drain clogging nightmare.
- Regularly maintain your drain: use your homemade drain clearing solution regularly to avoid easy build-up along your pipeline.
How To Unclog A Drain With Standing Water: In 5 Easy Steps
Drain clogging and overflowing is a common occurrence. You are worrying because it is messy and can damage your house. But do not worry, because we have a solution for you.
How to unclog a drain with standing water?
A simple solution is using baking soda mixed with vinegar. Pouring vinegar and baking soda works as a DIY chemical cleaner and clears up clogs in your drain. Wait for half an hour and wash away with hot water. Removing the dirt by hand and plunging also works often.
Now, to use this tip, we have prepared a step-by-step guide on how to unclog your drain.
Without any delay lets just start right in!
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If Nothing Else Works Bring Out The Chemicals
Chemical drain cleaners like Drano should be your last resort.
Before you buy a drain cleaning chemical, make sure to check that what youre buying will not be harmful to your drain pipes. And always wear protective gloves while handling these chemical drain cleaners.
Pour the drain cleaner gently into the drain, making sure you do not splash any water. Wait for around half an hour and flush the drain with cold water to finish the process.
How To Unclog A Shower Drain With A Chemical Drain Opener
If you’re wondering how to dissolve hair in a shower drain, you may want to try a chemical drain opener. Be safe and wear rubber gloves and eye protection if you use a chemical product for unclogging a shower drain. Read and follow the directions on the label, and make sure you have good ventilation so you don’t inhale any fumes. It’s also important to note that chemical drain products contain powerful ingredients that may cause damage to your pipes.
While some DIY-ers try to unclog a shower drain with bleach, some professional plumbers do not recommend it. While bleach cleans and sanitizes, it’s not always effective on shower clogs.
If chemicals labeled for use on shower clogs don’t work, and you call a plumber, be sure to tell them what youve put into the drain already, so they can work safely.
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How Can You Prevent Future Clogged Drain Issues
As you know, the shower drain clogs are developed gradually, there are some ways you can prevent them from being clogged in the first place.
- Regular cleaning of the shower and drain
You can maintain a routine to clean the shower and the drain of your bathroom. In this way, all the stuff like the hair, soaps, grease will not be able to accumulate in the shower drain over time.
The routine of cleaning the bathroom at least once a week can save you from the shower drain-clogging hassle for sure.
- Having A Drain Protector Inside Your Shower
You can keep a drain protector in your shower. It will keep all the stuff on the surface of it as those will not find a way to go to the path of the shower drain and eventually creating a stubborn clog.
This tool can work like magic when it comes to hair. All the hair gets stuck on it without falling to the shower drain to create a clog.
- Using loose soap rather than the hard one
We all know when we use a hard soap then not all parts of the soap get dissolved. Some of those parts may get stuck on the drain, and eventually, it may cause that blockage issue.
To avoid it, you can go for using the loose soap instead. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does my stand-up shower smell?
Most of the time the reason behind the smell is the debris that is stuck in the shower.
Can plunging make a clog worse?Where is the P-trap in a shower?
A P-trap is located under the shower drain hole.
Wrapping Things Up