Can You DIY Your Drain Cleaning?

Sink faucet dripping.

Most people mistakenly think that commercial drain cleaners aren’t harmful to their pipes because the packaging says it is “safe for pipes.” This type of marketing is misleading. The only liquid clog removers that are truly “safe for pipes” are all-natural enzymatic products that use natural enzymes to break up clogs that consist of organic material. However, these often aren’t able to clear tough clogs. Enzymatic drain cleaners are best used as monthly cleaning products, as there are more effective DIY methods you can use to both prevent and break up clogs.

DIY Drain Cleaning Methods

When your drains are running a little slow, or you are interested in preventive cleaning, you have two relatively simple options:

  • Heat up a large pot of water to the point that it is very hot but not boiling, then pour the water down the drain. Follow up with a pot of cool water to wash away the material you’ve melted.
  • Pour half a cup of baking soda down the drain, followed by half a cup of vinegar. Cover the drain opening and let it sit overnight. Flush the drain with water the next morning, and the reaction should help clear up any accumulated buildup.

DIY Clog Removal

If your drain is completely clogged, there are some things you can try before you call a professional:

  • A plumber’s snake (or auger) is a tool that is used to break up clogs. There are different types and designs, but they all generally work the same: You feed a thick wire down your drain, use a handle to turn it until it catches the clog, then pull it out and throw it away.
  • Plungers are most effective for small clogs. To plunge a sink, block the overflow opening to allow for the suction needed to plunge. Run a small amount of water and cover the opening with the plunger. As you move the plunger up and down, you should be able to feel the clog move if you’re able to dislodge it.

When DIY Methods Fail, Call a Professional

After you’ve tried these do-it-yourself options, if your pipes are still clogged, it’s time to call a professional. Meetze Plumbing offers a variety of reliable sewer and drain clog services to help with any clog clearing or prevention needs you may have in your home.

To learn more about our clog removal and prevention services, or to schedule an appointment, contact Meetze Plumbing at 803-732-3747 today.