Prevention is the best treatment for keeping your drains clean and maintaining a healthy drainage system. This includes paying attention to what you pour down your drains and ensuring that you regularly flush your drains with drain cleaners to prevent the accumulation of grease and debris.
By incorporating the following suggestions into your regular cleaning practices, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of having to deal with a clogged drain.
To prevent blockages in your drains, you should have the following items on hand:
• Safety glasses • Rubber gloves (elbow-length if possible) • Baking soda (or bicarbonate of soda) • Soda crystals • White vinegar • A kettle • A fat-collection container
As with any cleaning task involving chemicals or microorganisms, it is always prudent to be well-prepared. Gloves made of rubber will protect your hands and make it easier to pick up clumps of hair and other unpleasant materials. Additionally, protective glasses are required to prevent chemicals such as bleach or bacterial-laden water from entering the eyes.
Some drains in your home will require more frequent inspection than others, such as the bathroom sink, shower, and bathtub. This is where hair from shaving and washing can accumulate, especially when combined with soap scum, grease, and toothpaste.
In most cases, drains become clogged due to a combination of soap scum, dirt, and hair. However, over the years, some unusual objects have been the cause of clogged drains and the need for emergency drain cleaning. Here are a few uncommon causes of clogged drains:
Weekly, pour boiling water down your drains
Boiling water is a simple and effective natural drain cleaner and a great way to prevent fat, grease, and oil buildup in your pipes. Just be careful not to trip when carrying a boiling kettle of water to the bathroom on the second floor…
Use a biological cleaner to treat your drains.
A biological cleaner containing enzymes is the best drain cleaner for hair and an excellent way to treat the accumulation of fats, bacteria, mold, and other organic substances. They are also significantly more environmentally friendly than harsher chemicals like bleach or caustic soda.
Most home improvement stores sell enzymatic drain cleaners relatively cheaply. Follow the instructions on the back of the package when applying the product to your drains.
Flush drains with sodium bicarbonate and white vinegar
If you prefer, you can use baking soda and white vinegar instead of a biological cleaner. You can also substitute baking soda for baking powder. Hopefully, you already possess both of these items in your kitchen cabinets.
Simply combine a few tablespoons of baking soda with one cup of white vinegar, and then pour the solution down the drain. Allow the mixture to fizz for approximately five minutes before flushing the drain with boiling water from the kettle.
Use soda crystals to maintain clear drains.
Soda crystals are an additional effective method for preventing the accumulation of fats, oils, and grease in drains. Simply stir a cup of soda crystals into a bowl of boiling water until the soda crystals have completely dissolved. Now, slowly pour the solution into the drains.
Transfer fats to a container.
Prevention is preferable to treatment, so you should always dispose of cooking fat in a container rather than down the drain. Congealed oil from deep fat fryers, combined with other debris such as food and plastics, is one of the most common causes of clogged kitchen drains.
Brush your hair prior to taking a bath or shower
Before you take a bath or shower, brushing your hair will help remove the majority of loose hairs that could potentially clog your drain.
Clean your pet outdoors
If you bathe your pets, you should be aware that they lose more hair than humans, particularly during molting seasons. If possible, you should wash your cat, dog, or rabbit outside, or you should cover the drain in your bathtub with a towel to collect any hairs shed during the washing process.When in doubt, do not flush the following items:
• Plastic • Cigarettes and ash • Food • Sanitary products • Kitchen roll and standard paper • Cardboard packaging • Harsh chemicals including acid
The majority of the time, these suggestions should be sufficient to keep your drains running smoothly. However, if you need additional advice on keeping your drains clear or assistance unclogging them, a local plumber is only a phone call away.
Contact an emergency plumber immediately if you require further assistance.