Sooner or later, most homeowners have the pleasure of dealing with a disgusting drain clog. They're inconvenient, unsightly, and, because they create a backup of waste water, they can even present a biohazard. If that doesn't sound like your idea of a fun weekend project, take the time to read through this list of how these clogs form. Once you know how to clog a drain, you can take steps to prevent those clogs in the first place.
Bathroom Sinks and Bathtubs
When it comes to blocking up a bathroom drain, the most common tool is hair. The more hirsute your family is, the more you'll be dealing with hair clogs. Shorter hairs tend to go down with fewer problems, but those long, beautiful locks can be a big liability when it comes to your plumbing. Hair clogs can be difficult to remove, because many of the chemicals that work on hair clogs are also hard on pipes and drains and terrible for the environment. It's probably better to remove these buggers by hand with tools like drain snakes, and then use mild drain opening agents to remove any excess buildup. Hair clogs can be especially disgusting, so if you have a weak stomach, consider hiring a professional.
The fun thing about toilet clogs is that you never can tell for sure what has caused them until you get them unclogged. It could be a backup of the things you usually flush, or it could be something exotic like car keys, a tooth brush, dolls, matchbox cars, or kitty litter. The quickest way to clog a toilet is to flush things that don't belong in them, and no one is better at that task than small children. Having little kids in the house means keeping the bathroom off limits and supervising them during potty training if you want to avoid a call to the plumber.
Utility Sinks and Laundry Drains
Many a washing machine has gotten backed up because of loose change, various papers, candy wrappers and other such items left in pockets. Making sure to double check every pair of jeans before putting them through the wash will cut down on these occurrences. As for that utility sink, pet hair, mud, oil and craft supplies like scraps of paper are common clog culprits. Be careful where you dump your mop water, and consider adding a mesh strainer to the drain to prevent large particles from creating a clog.
Many kitchen sinks are manufactured with a strainer-like drain because of the high probability of food particle clogs. Even so, it's possible to wash too many small food particles down the drain and create a clog. Oil is another common kitchen drain clogger, and if you have a garbage disposal, you can clog your kitchen sink by putting soft, flexible foods into it in large quantities. To avoid a clog, grind up things like left over spaghetti noodles, leafy greens and cooked rice in small quantities with lots of water between portions, and never dump oil down a kitchen sink.
Preventing clogs is easier than cleaning them out, that's for sure. Now that you know more about how common clogs form, you're more prepared to prevent them. Even if you're conscientious about what you're putting in your drains, clogs can still form unexpectedly, so don't be afraid to get your hands a little dirty. If all your efforts fall short and you're stuck with a stubborn clog, professionals are experienced in removing just about every type of drain mass you can imagine, so if you need backup, give a drain cleaning pro a holler.
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4 December 2014
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