Tips for Clearing Clogged Drains Without Chemicals

Water pooling in the sink is not a good sign. Before the slow drain clogs completely, follow these steps to clear the plumbing without resorting to abrasive chemicals that could damage your pipes and pollute the water ways.

Clean Strainers

Sometimes a clogged strainer is the reason for a slow drain. Remove the strainer and clean it. Wipe out the base of the drain opening to clean out debris caught there, and then reinsert the strainer. Test to see if the water drains properly now.

Use a Plunger

Clogs near the drain can be cleared with a plunger:

  • Block overflow holes with a damp rag. Run a few inches of water into the sink to help force the clog out of the pipe.
  • Rub petroleum jelly on the plunger’s rim to give it a tighter seal.
  • Start plunging. Use forceful movements for a minute or two. Then stop to test whether the water drains now.
  • When the drain is clear, flush it with hot water to remove residual particles.

Clean the Trap

The trap is the curved portion of plumbing beneath the sink. To clean the trap:

  • Collect the supplies you need, including a bucket, straightened coat hanger or bottle brush, and pliers.
  • Check for a clean-out plug at the base of the trap. If you see this plug, place the bucket beneath the trap and remove the plug. Push the hanger or bottle brush around the bend to loosen debris.
  • If you don’t see a clean-out plug, you must remove the trap with pliers. Hold the removed plumbing over the bucket and insert the hanger or bottle brush to push out the blockage. Wash the trap with hot, soapy water.
  • Check the trap for corrosion or wear. If the metal or plastic material is thinning, consider replacing the trap.

Use a Sewer Snake

If cleaning the trap doesn’t remove the clog, clear the drain with a sewer snake:

  • Insert the snake into the drain until you meet the obstruction.
  • Turn the handle clockwise to hook the clog. Twist and push the clog to break it up.
  • Flush the pipe with cold water from the tap.

If you try these tips and the sink is still clogged, contact Day & Knight Plumbing & Heating for further assistance.

Comments are closed.