How to Fix a Slow Drain

Posted Apr 7, 2017

A slow drain can be frustrating, especially when there is no apparent cause to the clog. Slow drains can also cause unnecessary cleaning because the clog can allow substances to stay in the sink or tub that will stain the surface. There are several ways to clear the pipes so proper drainage can occur.

Hairballs are a common cause of most slow drains. A wire hanger is one of the easiest ways to remove the clog. Using wire-cutters, fashion the hanger into a long straight instrument with a slight hook on one end. After removing any drain covers, stick the homemade instrument into the drainage hole. Use gentle, slow movements to feel if the hanger is coming into contact with an obstruction. If the obstruction is a hairball, the hook on the end of the wire will be able to grab and pull the hairball out of the drain. Repeat this process until the hook stops grabbing pieces of the hairball.

If the wire hanger method does not fix the slow drain, a plunger can be used. First, fill a bucket with hot water and add a bit of regular dish soap. After positioning the plunger over the clogged drain, pour the water and soap solution into the sink or tub until the plunger is completely covered. Proceed to plunge, adding more water as necessary.

If this process does not work after a few repetitions, pour half a cup of baking soda into the drain. Add half a cup of white vinegar. These two substances will react to form a mixture that will go to work on the clog. Let this mixture sit for a few hours before rinsing the drain with boiling water.

If these two methods do not completely unclog the drain, it might be necessary to call for a professional plumber’s help. Slow drains present a growing problem if not taken care of right away because the clog can grow over time. Severely clogged drains can lead to permanent damage if the clog causes an overflow situation. Do not take your chances and fix the clog as soon as the problem occurs.

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