The most common problem with drains is that become clogged by hair, soap scum, and other foreign objects that somehow enters your plumbing system. You can try and fix it yourself and many people have homemade remedies that they swear will clear any clogged drain.
1. Use baking soda & vinegar
One of those is to pour half a cup of baking soda down the drain followed by a half cup of vinegar. Then replace the drain cover loosely and wait for a couple of hours before running water through the system. That might work for a moderately jammed drain, but if it doesn’t work, it’s time to call in professional help from a drain cleaning service.
2. Call a plumber
These specialized plumbers can work quickly and effectively to not just clear clogged drains, but deal with more serious problems like broken sewer lines and other catastrophes that you certainly couldn’t handle on your own. They will clear the clog and any other problems quickly and your household can resume your normal activities right away. Whether you have a blocked or clogged drain or a sewer backup, a drain repair and cleaning service might be what you need to solve your problem.
The first thing a drain cleaning service will do is inspect your drains and sewer lines. That allows them to identify and locate the source of the problem. A clogged drain can be caused by many different things including hair, soap scum, and any other foreign object or material that enters your plumbing system. The drain repair plumber will check all of your piping inside and then take a look at the sewer and external systems as well. Sometimes they will use a tiny camera that is attached to a wiring system, to take a look at the clog and map out its location.
After this initial inspection, the drain service plumber will have a good idea of where your problem is located. Then they can make a recommendation on how to proceed with any kind of service, repair or replacement. There could be any number of reasons that are causing your drain issues. These include corroded pipes, hard water deposits, sewer back-ups and organic clogging. The drain service plumber will use a variety of tools to determine what really caused the problem and to move you towards a solution.
5. Removing the P trap
When a drain service plumber starts working on the problem he most likely will first remove the P trap. The P trap is a curved section of pipe that sits right underneath the drain. This is the area that collects soap scum and debris and is the most common location for a drain clog. Sometimes just removing and cleaning out the P trap may resolve your clogged drain problem.
6. Inserting a drain snake
If that doesn’t work and the issue is not with the P trap, the drain service plumber will likely move to another strategy. This will involve using a tool called a drain snake that can reach clogs that are located deep within your drain system. Once the drain snake reaches the clog, it will be used to either pull out the clog, push out the clogged item or debris through the sewer system, or to create a hole that allows the water to start flowing again. They might use the drain snake in combination with pressure washing to completely clean the system.
7. Pipe cleaning/replacement
If those initial steps don’t work, the problem might be with faulty or corroded pipes. In that case the drain service plumber will have to access the pipework to either loosen the pipes, clean the pipes or replace them.
8. Sewer repairs
In the most serious cases, there could be damage to the sewer system in or around the home. This will be a much bigger job and could involve digging of the trench where the sewer line is buried, and performing the necessary plumbing and sewer repairs.