Indoor plumbing is one of the wonderful things about living in the modern world – at least until a drain line becomes clogged, at least. A clogged drain can quickly turn an otherwise ordinary day into a disaster, particularly if it causes dirty water to back up and spill all over your bathroom or kitchen. Here are 10 tips to keep your drain lines clear so you don’t have to deal with a plumbing mess.
Beware of Grease
Never pour grease, fat, or oil down your kitchen sink drain. While these may be liquid when they are poured, they all tend to solidify as they cool, which can quickly create a blockage in your drain line.
Always start the garbage disposal and water in advance when attempting to dispose of food in the kitchen sink, and allow them both to run briefly after the food has been processed. This helps to avoid having larger pieces of food left in the drain where it can clog a drain line.
Toilets are often used to flush a number of things that are not meant to travel into your sewer lines. Never flush anything down the toilet besides human waste and toilet paper.
Picking Your Paper
Always use toilet paper that will degrade and fall apart easily. Some toilet paper does not dissolve easily which can easily plug a drain or cause problems with a septic system.
Skip the Chemicals
Avoid using chemical drain cleaners. These harsh chemicals are a safety risk for humans and animals and may actually corrode plumbing. Some of these can even cause problems in septic systems.
Consider using natural cleaners like baking soda and vinegar for sinks and toilets. Not only are these options safer for people and the environment, they also work well.
Baking soda and vinegar together will react – as you may know from some science fair projects – which also makes it a good choice to help clear some drain clogs. Mix baking powder with water to create a thick paste and pour it into the affected drain, add some vinegar and put on the drain plug. Let this sit for a few hours, and often the reaction will force blockages through.
Keep at least two plungers handy for clearing minor drain clogs. Flange plungers work best for clearing toilet clogs, while cup plungers work best for clearing clogs in sink drains. It probably does not need to be said, but it is also a good idea to not use the toilet plunger in a sink for sanitary reasons.
Check the Back
Performing an inspection on the inner parts of the toilet occasionally can help to avoid clogged toilet drains. As these parts wear, they may no longer work properly. A toilet that does not have enough water for each flush is more likely to become clogged, so make sure that your toilet is filling and draining properly.
Call the Pros
Call a professional plumber when a drain does become clogged and cannot be easily cleared. Plumbers have the tools and experience to clear clogged drains without causing additional damage to the plumbing. In some cases, like if a drain repeatedly becomes clogged, there may be other problems that need to be addressed as well, and with our expertise, we can diagnose the issue and clear it for you for good.
Tonkin Plumbing has been serving the plumbing needs of the Riverside, Corona and Inland Empire region for more than two decades. Contact us today at 951-784-7586 to learn more or to schedule an appointment to tackle plumbing problems at your home or business.