A clogged drain seems like a pretty easy fix. No need to call in a plumber, right? Actually, while there are tons of DIY-friendly tasks waiting for you at home, plumbing problems likely aren’t on the list. Sometimes you just need to call in a professional or risk compounding the problem. This may be the case with your clogged drain. There are three items you don’t want to use when it comes to unclogging your bath or kitchen drain.
1. Commercial Drain Cleaner
It’s a mistake to use a commercial drain cleaner on home clogs, and here’s why:
- Drain cleaners use caustic chemicals that can burn your skin.
- These same chemicals can release toxic fumes.
- Some drain cleaners will eat holes in your plumbing.
If you reach for the drain cleaner every time the water stands still in your kitchen or bathroom sink, you’re taking risks that could cost you more money in the future. If you want to try a home remedy before calling in a plumber, use boiling water mixed with dish detergent instead. Pour the mixture directly down the drain to melt grease that could be causing the backup. And once you’ve cleared the clog, remember to use the boiling water trick intermittently to keep your drain free and clear. This is especially helpful for kitchen clogs.
2. Wire Coat Hanger
Even if you’re sure that clog is just a few inches down the pipe, never use a tool you’ve rigged up yourself. A wire coat hanger may seem like a good plan at the time, but once you get it stuck in the drain, you’re going to have to sheepishly explain how it happened to your plumber. This may net you a polite lecture on the dos and don’ts of home plumbing. Worse, the coat hanger could punch through old, corroded pipes, causing even bigger problems. Never use anything more powerful than a plunger on your home plumbing.
3. Plumber’s Tools
If you’re a licensed plumber, it’s fine to use a drain tool such as a snake. However, if your talents lie elsewhere, using professional plumbing tools could cause more damage than they fix. Many homeowners head straight to the home improvement store when clogs happen, and this isn’t always the best option. The money you’re going to spend on a plumber’s snake to unclog your toilet would be better used in paying your plumber. You’ll skip the frustration of trying to use a tool you don’t understand, and you won’t risk weakening your pipes.
Play it safe and call your local plumber when clogs happen. In the Gainesville area, J.W. Freeman Plumbing is waiting to help. Our service technicians have over 50 years of combined experience in keeping your drain clean and clear. Call today or visit us online for a list of services we offer.