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Carolina Climate Control Blog

Got a Clogged Drain? What to Try—And What NOT to Try


Clogged drains are among the most common plumbing problems. We’ve all had to deal with a kitchen sink that won’t drain or a shower that leaves a pool of water around our feet. In some cases, removing clogs is something you can do on your own if you have the right tools. 

We’re going to look at what you can try when you need to get a drain or toilet unclogged. We’re also going to shine a light on what not to do because unfortunately one of the methods many people use for drain unclogging is one of the worst!

Try … a plunger

We hope you have a plunger handy in the house because it’s a helpful tool that can solve basic clogs quickly and without damaging the pipes. Actually, we hope you have two plungers around: a sink plunger and a toilet plunger. Sink plungers work for most drains, like those in kitchen sinks and showers. A toilet plunger has phalanges on the end so it can better fit the shape of a toilet bowl. 

Using a plunger is easy. First, create a secure seal between the plunger and the drain. Then push the plunger down with short, strong strokes. Don’t plunge too fast, since that won’t create enough pressure inside the drain pipe to move the obstruction.

Try … a drain auger

Also called a drain snake, a drain auger is a device you can send down into your drain to break up clogs or pull them out. There are different types of drain augers available. The simplest are long plastic strips with barbs or velcro patches. These augers are most helpful at hair removal, and we recommend using one as soon as you notice slow drain problems in your bathroom sinks.

There are also metal augers that have hand cranks to spin them; these can be effective on more obstinate clogs. There are motorized drain augers, but these are only suitable for professionals to use.

Try … professional drain cleaning

The most effective drain clog removal method is to call a professional plumber. If the plunger and the drain auger don’t work, the next step is to call our team for drain and sewer cleaning in Summerville, SC. We have specialized tools, like motorized rooters and hydro-jetters, that can clear out the most stubborn clogs. We’ll not only unclog the drain, we’ll thoroughly clean the drain so it’s difficult for the clog to come back. 

DON’T Try … chemical drain cleaners

Be honest, one of your first ideas for unclogging a drain was to purchase a bottle of liquid drain cleaner from the store. The manufacturers of these products spend a lot of money advertising them so that people will think of them as the automatic solution for any clog. 

The truth is that no professional plumber recommends using these caustic chemicals on drains. First, they’re not highly effective: they eat through a clog to allow water through, but leave much of the clog behind. Second, they’re extremely acidic and will damage drainpipes and lead to corrosion. Third, they’re incredibly toxic and create harmful fumes. Fourth, they harm the environment when the bottles end up in landfills with all that toxic residue still inside them.

Rely on Carolina Climate Control for those obstinate drain clogs. The Moose Is Loose in Your Neighborhood! 

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