When it comes to the healthy flow of materials running through your drains and pipes, prevention is the key to keeping them clear of common clog-causing debris. If you want to save money from calling a plumber to repair a clogged sink that is holding things up in your kitchen or bathroom, try being mindful of the things you put into your sink and let drain down into your poor pipes. Here are just a few items that should never go down:
Stash cooking grease in an old coffee can or milk carton and toss in the trash. It’s an extra step that will save you a lot of headaches – and money.
Chuck coffee grinds in garbage, add to mulch pile, or use to make an easy, skin-softening, DIY body scrub that will help diminish those dreaded dimples on backs of thighs, while keeping drains clog-free. Win-win.
A huge no-no that will keep pipes a go-go, these two thick, oily, chemical-laden liquids should never go down drains. Period. End of story.
Now that you know what NOT to throw down the sink, here are some clog-clearing tips and tricks to keep things running smoothly:
Invest in a Drain Screen
Place a screen or plate over your drain’s opening to catch and filter hair, soap scum, and other residual debris from beauty products, clay masks, exfoliating scrubs, etc. This timeless tool can be found at your local hardware store or plumbing supply.
Run scalding hot water through the sink after each use, especially after hair-washing to dislodge any strands that may have gotten stuck, or dish washing to dissolve any food debris. Hot water helps break down the oils in food products from running down drain, rather than building up on surface of pipe walls, which can subsequently slow down the entire system to a sluggish, clogged crawl. Infuriating.
Toss a few tablespoons of pure baking soda (a box will set you back a buck) into drain and follow with super scalding water. Baking soda has purifying properties and neutralizes unpleasant odors.
Pour one cup vinegar down your drain and let sit for 30 minutes, then flush it all through with hot water. Also, a terrific, inexpensive cleansing agent, vinegar is naturally infused with acetic acid, which is an excellent solvent for removing sledge, crud, and other pipe-jamming nasties.
For a super stubborn, slow-as-snails, stopped-up sink, or if your drains suffer from chronic constipation, try the following overnight option that works on sinks, tubs, or showers. You’ll need ½ cup of baking soda, salt, and vinegar, plus a few quarts of very hot water. Before bedtime, pour salt and baking soda into drain. Add vinegar and let this homemade clog-killing concoction foam for 60 seconds. Finish by flushing with two quarts of the hot water.
For sinks with automatic garbage disposals, try this quick clog-busting trick. Fill ice cube tray half full with vinegar and top off the other half with clear water. Freeze. (Be sure to alert family members NOT to use for personal consumption.) Turn on garbage disposal and throw in the cubes. The vinegar’s acetic acid eats away at build-up, expelling grease and grime from the disposal and constituent drain, while the ice ingeniously chills and scraps grease from walls. If the scent of vinegar is unappealing, you can always chase the cubes with a squeezed lemon. The invigorating scent of the lemon will delight the senses, while simultaneously clearing your clogged sink.
Lye is another option to help keep sinks and tubs and showers free-flowing. An active ingredient in most store-bought household cleaning products, lye dissolves soap scum, grease, grime, and hair strands in seconds. Just pour some down drain and chase with small amount of hot water.
If you follow these cost-effective, simple steps to keeping sinks, tubs, showers, and kitchen garbage disposals from stopping up, you’ll save a lot of money, time & potential damage, guaranteed . Also, if you have your own private septic tank, it’s highly advised to have it professionally assessed and inspected every 2-4 years, as well as having it pumped regularly. Whether you are having a water leak emergency in the middle of the night, or need sewer cleaning or drain service while maintaining commercial property. We will dispatch a licensed plumber that same day to help you. Red Lilly plumbers provide a free and honest estimate for suggested services. We also service all of Los Angeles County. Call today to learn more about any one of our services.