We’ve all been there: your drain gets clogged up, and you’re stuck trying to fix it for hours.
A prolonged backup can be extremely inconvenient, and it can take a while to have it fixed by someone else.
With that in mind, the answer is obvious: prevent the clogs before they ever happen!
But how can you do that?
In this article, we’ll dive into all the ways you can prevent clogged drains so you never have to experience them again!
How to Prevent Drain Clogs Before They Happen
If you have ever experienced a clogged kitchen sink, bathroom sink, shower drain, or tub drain, then you know that it can be extremely difficult to fix.
So what’s the best way to avoid dealing with a clogged drain?
Prevent clogged drains, of course!
If you don’t want to deal with clogged sinks, shower drains, or bathroom drains, you should listen to the old saying: prevention is better than cure!
And when it comes to preventing a clogged drain, there are seven common practices you can use:
- Dispose of trash properly
- Run water with the garbage disposal
- Utilize stoppers and screens
- Check your p-trap
- Clean your drain clog with hot water
- Avoid chemical drain cleaners
- Use bacterial drain cleaners
By using these seven strategies regularly, you can prevent clogs and say goodbye to backed-up drains forever.
We’ll be going into each strategy in detail below, so keep reading!
Dispose of Trash Properly
The simplest thing you can do to prevent clogs is to properly dispose of trash, such as food particles.
This may sound like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t think of doing this!
Since many sinks come with a garbage disposal, people will often throw everything down the sink, including food scraps, egg shells, paper towels, coffee grounds, cooking grease, and cigarette butts.
However, what many people forget is that it’s advised to only use your garbage disposal once a day, since using it more frequently can overwhelm your sink drain pipe.
And when it comes to the bathroom, remember that your toilet is only meant to flush toilet paper and human waste – not feminine hygiene products, dental floss, or other debris!
To keep your drains and pipes free of any blockages, throw biodegradable waste in your compost bin, and non-biodegradable waste in your trash can.
You can also use a hair-catching brush to comb your hair so none of it gets into your pipes.
And if you have to get rid of grease, the best way is to pour the grease into a sealable container. You can then throw the grease in the trash or have it recycled.
Run Water with the Garbage Disposal
Speaking of garbage disposals, what’s the best way of using them without clogging your drains?
The answer is simple: keep the water running while using it to dispose of waste!
This makes sense when you think about it. A water current will help keep the waste moving through the pipes, preventing them from clogging your drain.
A water current will also prevent your disposal from getting damaged, which means you won’t have to pay for a repair!
However, one thing you must note if you can control the temperature of your tap water: always use cold water.
This is because hot or warm water tends to melt or congeal waste, which increases the chance of a clog.
Utilize Stoppers and Screens
Another easy way to prevent your shower drain or tub drain from getting a clog is by using stoppers and screens.
As you probably already know, a drain stopper is used to stop water flow down a drain.
However, it can also stop loose hair, pet hair, soap scum, and other gunk from clogging your pipes.
If your drain doesn’t have a drain stopper built-in or can’t be fitted with one, a good alternative is a screen.
Mesh screens go over the drain and strain out debris before it can get to your pipes.
Your drain may already have a built-in screen. If so, make sure to use it. You can buy a cheap one and install it yourself if it doesn’t!
Check Your P-Trap
An often overlooked but necessary practice is checking your p-trap, the U-shaped pipe under your sink.
Because of how it’s shaped, you can easily open it to check for clogs every now and then. Simply place a container under it to collect any water or waste that might be stuck there, and clean it out.
Since the p-trap for a tub or shower is harder to reach, you can follow these steps to clear it:
- Remove the overflow plate.
- Pull the pop-up stopper from the drain and use the spring or rocker arm to remove it.
- Cover the overflow plate with a damp cloth and some plastic to create a seal.
- Plunge the drain.
- Use a drain snake or a bent wire to fish out clogs.
- Put the pop-up stopper and overflow plate back in place.
Clean Your Drain Clog with Hot Water
Another thing you can do to keep your pipes clear of any clogs is clean them regularly.
A great way to do this is by simply pouring very hot water down the drain to dissolve any fats or oils. If you want to be vigilant, it’s best to clean your drain with hot water every week.
And if you want to go the extra mile, you can use baking soda and plain white vinegar before pouring boiling water.
Baking soda and vinegar help eliminate odors, and together they create a chemical reaction that helps clean any dirt in your pipes.
All you need to do is pour a half cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar down your drain and let the mixture sit until it stops fizzing.
After that, all you need to do is pour boiling water down the drain to dissolve the salt produced by the reaction.
Avoid Chemical Drain Cleaners
If you’ve gone to the store searching for an easy fix, you’ve probably been tempted to buy a chemical drain cleaner.
However, this is far from the solution.
Chemical drain cleaners are extremely acidic, which is how they help dissolve clogs in your pipes.
But this acidity also works against you because it can lead to corroded pipes over time.
Corrosion can cause pieces of the pipes to flake off, and these flakes can eventually ball up and clog your drain.
Corrosion may also eventually lead to leaks in your pipes. If enough of the pipe flakes off, it will lose its structural integrity and crack under the pressure of the water running through it.
And last but not least, chemical drain cleaners are often dangerous for your health. The fumes can damage your eyes and lungs, so the only safe way to use them is by wearing a mask and goggles.
Use Bacterial Drain Cleaners
Finally, the last thing you can do is use a bacterial drain cleaner.
Bacterial drain cleaners are a great choice because they don’t corrode your pipes but can eliminate any clogs!
Plus, bacterial drain cleaners are biodegradable.
This makes them safer for the environment. It also makes them safe to use for toilets since they won’t disturb the bacteria in your septic system.
So if you want a quick solution to clogs, check hardware stores for a bacterial drain cleaner!
How Do I Keep My Drains Running Freely?
Even after all the tips listed above, you may still have trouble preventing clogs, especially if you have a complex or old plumbing system.
If this is the case, the best solution is to call a plumber.
This ensures you’ll get a professional with the skill, knowledge, and expertise to fix your clogged drains – which is much better than fiddling around and accidentally damaging your drain lines!
Book an Appointment with Mac 5 Services Today!
Here at Mac 5 Services, we have a team of professional technicians who know how to take care of everything from your drains to plumbing, heating, and cooling.
As you already know, drains tend to clog easily, which is all the more reason for you to get proper maintenance for them.
No matter your plumbing problems, we’ve got all the solutions you could need here at Mac 5 Services!
So what are you waiting for? Book an appointment with us on our website!
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