Dealing with a clogged drain is never fun. It can be quite a hassle because of the mess it leaves behind and the disruption it causes to your day. In some cases, you can fix the problem on your own. For this reason, it’s good for homeowners to know the basics of unclogging a drain. In other cases, however, the problem might be too challenging for you to deal with on your own. And this is when you need to enlist the services of a professional plumber.
What Causes a Clogged Drain?
There are several potential culprits when it comes to a clogged shower drain or a clogged bathroom sink. While hair and dirt are two common causes of clogged drains, anything large enough can clog a drain. Soap doesn’t usually create a drainage problem; however, it can mix with hair and form a mass that blocks the drain.
Keep in mind that clogged drains are bound to happen from time to time, so don’t be alarmed when this occurs. Over time, pieces of hair and debris build up and can become large enough to obstruct the flow of water down the drain.
Clogged toilets, on the other hand, are often the immediate result of the wrong items being flushed down the toilet. Common causes of clogged toilets are:
- Toilet paper
- Non-flushable objects
- Cat litter
A clogged drain could be a symptom of a larger problem with your water line. This is when you need an experienced team who knows just what to look for. As a result, you will be able to get to the root of the problem effectively.
Symptoms of a Clogged Drain
Sometimes signs of a clogged drain are fairly easy to detect. Other times, they aren’t as obvious. Look for the following symptoms:
- Pooling or slow-moving water down the sink or bathtub drain
- Water backing up out of a drain
- A foul smell coming from the drain
- Water pooling on the bathroom floor or under the kitchen sink
- Gurgling or sucking sounds coming from your pipes and drains
- A backed-up toilet that will not flush
Although these signs are mostly superficial and easy to manage, they could be symptomatic of bigger issues. The only way to trace the cause of the issue is to have a professional residential plumber inspect your property. Often, there might actually be a need to repair a drain line, clean it, or even replace it altogether.
How to Fix a Clogged Drain
There are some preventative measures you can take to stay ahead of drainage problems like using a screen over your drain. This will often catch hair and other items and stop them from going down the drain and causing a problem.
Depending on the cause of your drainage problem, you may be able to unclog the drain on your own without needing professional plumbing services.
The first step you should take is to clear the drain by using a bent wire or something that can hook the hair and pull it out. If this is not effective, try using a plunger.
Steps to Unclog Your Drain
- Allow the water to fill the sink or bathtub partially
- If the blockage is in the double sink, use a rag to stop the train.
- If you are dealing with a sink in a bathroom, a towel should be used to cover/stop the overflow hole.
- If the blocked drain is in the shower, duct tape or a rag should be used to stop the overflow plate.
- Next, use a plunger to try to unclog the drain. You will need to make quick, rapid movements several times. You will need to use a cup plunger specifically for sinks, and flange plunger if you are dealing with a blocked toilet.
- Remove the plunger quickly to see if the water goes down the drain quickly.
- Repeat as necessary.
Keep in mind that using chemical drain cleaners is not advised because they contain harsh ingredients that are corrosive. Over time, the damage may call for drain line repair or drain line replacement sooner than necessary.
Drain Still Clogged? You May Want to Consult an Expert
A clogged drain may seem like a small problem; however, if not taken care of properly, it can lead to even bigger problems. Treat clogged drains quickly by calling a drain line service provider. Contacting a licensed plumber can help you stay one step ahead of drainage problems by using cutting edge technology and techniques like drain line camera inspection.