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How-To: Do-It-Yourself Drain Cleaning

If there’s one truth in the world, it’s that a drain will always get clogged. Maybe not now, but there will come a time in the future when your water will start draining slower and slower. Here’s how to take on unclogging drains yourself.

Liquid Drain Cleaners

From a mixture of vinegar and baking soda to enzyme-based liquid drain cleaners, sometimes you don’t have to do anything more than pour a solution down the drain. Assuming the clog is due to the natural build-up of sludge, letting an abrasive solution dissolve the gunk is enough to clear the pipes. You can even use these monthly as preventatives.


If harsher liquids aren’t enough, it’s time to pull out the plunger to see if you can dislodge whatever is in the pipes. Fill your sink or tub with enough liquid to cover the bottom third of the plunger. This will create the suction needed to get things moving. Give a few plunges and see if either anything comes up or the water begins draining faster. Keep going until the clog is gone.

Opening the Pipes

If the clog happens to be in a sink, you can easily get at the pipes and find the clog yourself. First, turn off the water to the sink you’ll be working on. Next, put a bucket underneath the pipes you’ll be undoing so that you can catch and contain anything that falls through. Finally, disconnect the pipes one by one until you find the culprit. The clog could be as high up as the tailpiece or as low as the p-trap.

If that doesn’t do it or the tub is backing up, save yourself time and money and call in a professional. Reach out to Michael’s Plumbing Service at (615) 645-2322 for any of your plumbing needs.

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