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The Terrible Truth about Drain Clogs

Published by 911 Restoration Salt Lake City on April 24, 2014 in category: Water Damage Restoration

pipe burst salt lake city utPlumbing Emergency

My neighbor asked me for help this weekend because of a clog in a kitchen sink to avoid calling a professional plumber. I was happy to help out, but I also explained there are several items that should never go in a drain. The other important thing to keep in mind is that calling a professional plumber isn’t a bad idea. I was able to get the clog out of the drain this time by using a few simple techniques that everyone should know. After getting the drain unclogged, we sat down to relax while talking about the plumbing emergency. Recently, my neighbor had a new garbage disposal unit installed in her kitchen sink, leading her to thinking any food substance could go into the device.

Dislodging Clogs

Garbage disposals are great appliances to have in a home, but many things can make the sharp blades stop rotating. My neighbor had been putting items such as banana peels and corn husks in the garbage disposal causing a buildup of fibrous material that wrapped around the blades to create a huge clog. In addition, I discovered she routinely pours grease down the drain while running cold water. Those things combined together led to a kitchen drain that was completely clogged with a disgusting mess. Fortunately, I have a plunger that I keep under my kitchen sink that was useful for dislodging the clog.

Sink Plunger

I made a list of the items she should never put in her kitchen drain to keep near the sink, and she also bought her own plunger. She knows it is important to run water before putting items in the garbage disposal and to keep water running throughout the grinding process. Occasionally, she runs hot water through the drains to dislodge greasy substances that collect on the interior of the pipes. She thought that using over-the-counter drain cleaners would be helpful, but I advised against this because the chemicals can erode the garbage disposal blades.

Homemade Cleaner

Instead of using expensive store-bought drain cleaners, I gave her my homemade recipe that is cheap and safe to use. I simply sprinkle a small amount of baking soda into a drain before adding white vinegar. These two items have a mild reaction of sizzling to assist with keeping drains clog free. In addition, it helps to deodorize the drain and pipes. After the sizzling action ends, I run water for a few minutes. While this is a perfect way to clean my kitchen sink, it works nicely for the bathroom sink and bathtub too.

Hair Catchers

I never have to worry about the dangers of having poisonous chemicals in my home with the baking soda and vinegar drain cleaning method. To prevent clogs in my home’s bathtub and bathroom sink, I bought a couple of low-cost plastic hair catcher devices that attach to fixtures with suction cups. This keeps my bathroom fixtures from developing clogs from a combination of hair strands and soap. If using a plunger to dislodge clogs in my home’s drains is ineffective, then I call a professional plumber. Also, if a clog gets out of hand water overflows, significant water damage can occur. At this point, you’re going to need to call a trusted water damage restoration team to get your home back in tip top shape.

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