How To Unclog A Bathtub Drain With Standing Water –
A blocked or clogged drain is a pain, but it doesn’t mean that you require to get in touch with a plumber. Most clogged drains can be simply cleared by employing items that are around the residence or just a few economical tools.
All drains have a comparable construction. At the bottom of the drainpipe is a curved section of pipe referred to as a trap below the sink, this trap is shaped like an “U.” Most bathtubs have a slightly different shaped trap referred to as a “P” trap, because it really is shaped like the letter “P.” The curves in the trap are there to “trap” some water in the drain line and avoid sewer gases from coming up the pipe and smelling up the residence. Over time, even so, the traps sometimes get blocked with things like cooking grease or food particles (in kitchen drains) or hair and soap scum (in tubs and bathroom sinks). Slow running drains are partially blocked, and drains that don’t drain at all are naturally totally blocked.
Clearing Out a Blockage
The very first step in unblocking a bathtub drain is to look at it and see if you can spot what’s blocking it. In bathtubs, often a build up of hair and scuzzy soap scum will truly close up a drain. If you can see hair in the bottom of the drain, you can usually just reach in and pull the clog out. Because that’s not a lot of fun, you may well want to attempt bending a wire coat hanger to hook onto the clog to pull it out. Alternatively, a pair of tweezers may well function, or even a pair of needle nose pliers.
Utilizing a Plunger
If you cannot see the clog to pull it out, your next step is to attempt plunging the drain. A plumber’s helper—plunger to some of us—didn’t get its name without great reason, and it is a single of the first tools a pro would use to clear a blocked drain. Put enough water in the bathtub or sink to cover the bottom of the plunger, block the overflow outlet with a rag, put the plunger more than the drain, and push down and up 5 or six instances. The stress need to clear any clog and open up the pipe. Lift up the plunger and the water must swiftly drain away. If it doesn’t, attempt plunging again—you may possibly have just moved the blockage down the pipe where it got stuck once again.
Note: On some bathtubs the drain stopper is attached to the overflow plate. In order to plunge the drain, you want to remove the overflow plate and the drain mechanism. The overflow plate is generally held in spot by two screws, and following you remove them, you can gently eliminate the overflow plate and the drain mechanism at the exact same time.
Snaking a Drain
If a plunger won’t clear a blockage, a “snake”—a lengthy versatile steel cable wound on a handle—is the next level of escalation. In a sink you just feed the snake down the drain, but on a bathtub you want to feed the snake down by way of the overflow plate opening. Commence by feeding about 3 feet of the snake into the opening, turning it as you push it forward. You will really feel some resistance as you operate the snake through the trap under the drain, and the turning helps to move the head by way of the trap. The snake must either break up the clog by pushing its way through it, or your turning will hook the end of the snake onto the clog and you can pull it out.
As soon as the snake is by means of the trap, move the cable back and forth by way of the drainpipe although nevertheless turning it. You could really feel the clog when the snake hits it. Attempt running some water down the drain whilst moving the snake in the drain. If the clog is gone, the drain will run cost-free. You may have to repeat this method a couple of times to get the drain cleared out, because some clogs are much more persistent than other individuals. Take care not to go as well far when snaking a drain, otherwise you may possibly run into complications with snagging the snake. If this happens, it might require professional help.
What About Chemicals?
Some folks feel utilizing chemical compounds to clear a drain is an alternative. Nevertheless, any chemical substances that will dissolve a clog (generally grease-primarily based) are very caustic and damaging to the environment. No professional will ever use a chemical to clear a drain for precisely these reasons.
Keeping Drains Clear
Clearing a blocked drain isn’t a lot of exciting. It is significantly better to prevent a clog from taking place in the very first spot. Here’s some tips on how you can keep your bathtub drains free flowing:
- Do not just drop tiny pieces of soap down the drain assuming they will dissolve and wash away. This is how soap builds up in a drain.
- Use strainers in all your drains to stop hair from going down the drain. It’s less complicated to clear out a strainer when a month than unblock a drain each and every six.
- As soon as a month, pour a kettle complete of boiling water down the drain. This will melt any grease (physique oil) and wash it away ahead of it can develop up. (Don’t do this in a toilet the boiling water could crack the porcelain).
- Every three months or so, pour a half cup of baking soda in the drain then gradually add a half cup of vinegar. Let the mixture sit in the drain for a handful of minutes and then rinse it away by operating lots of hot water down the drain. This will not only keep your drains free running, but clean smelling as properly.