The Do’s and Don’ts of the Clogged Bathtub Drain

Clogged bathtub drainOwning a home is great but it is not always easy. Sometimes little things can go wrong that add up to a big expense. Take your bathtub for instance, most of the time you take its use for granted but when the drain gets slow or clogs things can get ugly in a hurry. So what do you do if you have a clogged bathtub drain? Here are some suggestions that might help you.

Stay Away From the Harsh Chemicals

Most people in your situation will immediately reach for the big jug of all purpose drain cleaner you bought at the store but you have to be careful there. These store bought chemicals can be harsh on you, harsh on the plumbing and harsh if you spill any on the surroundings. Worse yet, they don’t always work.

Check the Drain for Hair

It’s no secret that about 80% of the time a clogged bathroom drain is caused by a buildup of hair. Many times the source is right at the drain cover itself or at the beginning of the pipe. Check this area thoroughly to see if that is what it is and clean any hair. You can even simply undo the 3 or 4 screws that hold the cover on, remove it and then check underneath it.

Try Hot Water

Many clogs can be removed simply by pouring hot water into the tub. Just heat a big panful on the stove and then poor it into the tub and let is work its magic. Take note not to boil the water though; boiling water can hurt the pipes and may also loosen the seals in the plumbing and around the fixtures.

Try a Plunger

If the hot water failed to do the trick, then next try your bathroom plunger. Many times that little burst of air the plunger gives you is enough to free a clog and open the drain. Make sure when you use this device that it makes a good seal around the drain so the full force of the plunge goes into the pipes.

Vinegar and Baking Soda

These two inexpensive household ingredients can do wonders if you have a clogged bathtub drain. They are not as harsh as store bought drain cleaners but they work well when combined together. When you use them you should allow 30 – 40 minutes for them to work before you try anything else.

Use a Plumbers Snake

If none of these other methods have worked to fix your clogged bathroom drain, then it is time to use a plumber’s best friend, the plumbing snake. These work by inserting a long flexible wire into the pipes that has a hooked bit that rotates to cut through clogs. You have to be extremely careful with these plumbers’ snakes, especially the real powerful electric ones, that you don’t hurt the pipes.

The best advice is that when it gets to time to pull out the plumbers snake because of clogged bathtub drain, you may want to consider calling a plumbing professional. They are fast, know what they are doing and they are not as expensive as you might think.


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