Many homeowners turn to DIY drain cleaners. However, these products often fail to unclog a pipe. They also contain harsh chemicals that damage pipes and are not good for the environment or your health.
If a smelly, clogged drain persists, call Clearwater Plumbers. Some of the ways that plumbing experts clean drains include spin casting, snaking, hydro-jetting, and oxidizing drain cleaners.
Almost every homeowner has dealt with a drain clog at some point. It’s easy to think that a plunger or quickly snaking the drain will solve the problem, but if the clog is in your sewer line, you’ll probably need to call in a professional plumber to handle it. Clogged pipes aren’t just a nuisance; they can lead to serious plumbing issues, including backflow and property damage.
There are many reasons your drains might clog, and they can vary depending on whether you live in a residential or commercial setting. Drain clogs can occur in toilets, sinks, and bathtubs, as well as showers, laundry machines, and dishwashers. All of these pipes are interconnected, so a clog in one pipe can affect water flow from all of them.
Bathroom drain clogs often occur when hair binds to soap molecules on the walls of the pipe, creating a thick gunk that can trap more debris and block the drain. Over time, this gunk can build up until it completely covers the pipe and stops water from flowing.
Kitchen drain clogs can occur when food scraps or grease block the pipe. You can help reduce the risk of these clogs by properly disposing of food waste and cooking grease. It’s also helpful to clean your drains regularly with baking soda and vinegar. These natural cleaners can break up and dissolve unwanted goop that may be building up in your drains.
Another common cause of clogged drains is feminine hygiene products. Though it might be tempting to flush sanitary items, you should always follow the usage directions on the packaging and dispose of these products in the trash.
Another reason for clogged drains is broken or damaged pipes. If you have a leak in your sewer line, you will need to hire professionals to fix it and install a new line. This can be costly, but it’s essential to keep in mind that a leaking sewer line can cause major problems throughout your home. This is why you should always hire licensed, insured plumbers to work on your sewer and drainage lines.
One of the most common causes of smelly drains is rotting food waste. This is a natural byproduct of food cooking or decomposition, but when left in the drain and traps, it can build up and produce a foul odor. This rotting food and other organic matter can also attract bacteria that can clog the line.
If the odor is coming from your kitchen or bathroom sink, a blocked sewer line may be to blame. The P-trap under the drain is designed to block odors and gases from the sewage line, but this can dry out over time and allow these odors into your home.
The best way to prevent smelly drains is to be mindful of what you put down them. Avoid putting hot oil or grease down the drain, and use a strainer to catch food scraps and hand soap particles. Keeping your drains clean with regular drain cleaner will help reduce the risk of odors, and using a natural drain deodorizer will help eliminate unpleasant smells.
A great DIY option for reducing smelly drains is mineral oil. This is an inexpensive product that can be bought at most hardware stores, and it effectively blocks odors and sewage gases from entering your home. It’s important to note, however, that mineral oil can cause a clog if it is used frequently, so it’s recommended that you use this method sparingly and only as necessary.
Other DIY options for removing smelly drains include baking soda and boiling water. Baking soda can deodorize the drain, but it won’t break up clogs or dissolve grease. It’s a good idea to make it a habit to flush the drain with hot water after each use, especially in the kitchen, and to add a tablespoon of baking soda once a month to neutralize odors.
Boiling water is an effective drain deodorizer as well, and it will break down any remaining food waste or grease and wash away any dirt and residue that may be causing the odor. Just be sure to use a kettle or pan that can handle high temperatures and never mix different drain cleaners, as this could create dangerous fumes.
Sewer Line Issues
A sewer line clog can disrupt the function of your entire plumbing system. It will prevent your sinks, toilets, and bathtubs from draining properly, and it can cause sewage to back up into your home. The resulting smell is unpleasant and hazardous to your health. In the worst cases, it can lead to a collapsed or cracked sewer line that threatens your home’s foundation. If you suspect that your sewer line is clogged, call a plumber right away.
A basic drain snake can handle some small clogs, but most homeowners don’t have the equipment or knowledge to deal with a major problem with the main sewer line. A plumber will have a heavy-duty main-line sewer cleaner that will clear even the most stubborn clogs. The plumber can also inspect the line and determine what caused it.
The most common cause of a sewer line clog is grease. Grease will often solidify when it cools, and it can block the lines. It is important to avoid dumping any fat or oils down the drain. You should also avoid flushing so-called “flushable” wipes, sanitary products, and paper towels down the drain.
Another common problem is tree roots. As they search for water and nutrients, roots can infiltrate the lines and cause a clog. To prevent this, have your pipes inspected by a professional before planting new trees in your yard.
If your sewer line is damaged, a plumber will install a new line or patch the existing one. If the damage is extensive, the plumber may recommend hydro jetting, which uses a high-pressure hose to blast even the most stubborn clogs out of the pipe.
To keep your sewer lines clear, clean them once a month with an enzyme drain cleaner. These cleaners don’t have any harsh chemicals and will help break down grease that can cause clogs. It is also a good idea to plant trees far from your sewer lines and to have the lines professionally inspected before buying a new home. This will ensure that the roots don’t infiltrate and cause a costly clog or other problems down the line.
Keeping your drains clean can be one of the best preventative maintenance tasks you can do for your home. It can help you avoid the inconvenience and expense of a major clog that can damage your pipes and affect the quality of your home’s water. It can also help you keep unpleasant odors from building up in your home.
While drain cleaning isn’t typically on a homeowner’s to-do list until something goes wrong, it can make the difference between a minor nuisance and a disastrous situation. A little routine maintenance can make a big difference and can even save you money on your utility bills!
Backed-up drains can lead to a lot of problems. Besides the mess, they can result in water or sewage backflow into your home and a range of other issues. In addition, if a clog is caused by a broken pipe or sewer backup, it can cause serious structural damage and require costly repairs or replacements to your home’s plumbing system. Fortunately, you can avoid all of these problems by having your drains cleaned regularly and practicing some basic preventative maintenance.
Aside from having your professional drains cleaned on a regular basis, there are several things you can do to help prevent them from getting clogged in the first place. For example, every week, you can pour a pot of boiling water down your drains to flush them and dislodge any grease buildup. You can also use an enzymatic drain cleaner once a month to keep your pipes clean and smelling fresh.
When a clog does occur, it’s important to act quickly and call your professional plumber for help. A professional can clear out the clog and assess the condition of your pipes to determine whether they need to be replaced or repaired.
The frequency of drain cleaning varies based on your household’s needs, but in general, you should have them cleaned at least once per year to get the most benefit. A professional can help you determine how often you should have your drains professionally cleaned to ensure they stay in good working order.