A clogged drain is one of the most common and annoying plumbing problems you can experience. The inconvenience of a sink that won’t drain, a toilet that won’t flush or finding yourself standing in 4 inches of water in the shower is enough the ruin your day. While a clogged drain is not completely avoidable, there are a few things you should never put down your drains.
At one time it was thought that coffee grounds were great for keeping drains clear and smelling good. The truth is that coffee grounds act like cement when dumped down kitchen drains, forming an impenetrable barrier. Instead of flushing them or placing them in the garbage, they can be composted or spread around the garden as they make an excellent fertilizer.
With everyone in the family washing their hair, some hair is bound to find it’s way into the drains of your shower or bathtub. Mixed together with soap scum and other particles it builds up which contributes to a clogged drain. A good way to avoid this issue is using strainers over these drains – just remember to clean the strainers regularly.
Pouring grease down your drain causes this sticky mess to wind up stuck to the inside of the pipes. Any food that finds it’s way down the drain sticks to the grease, and before you know it you have a problem. If you accidentally pour grease down the drain, pouring lots of boiling water down the drain should help move it through the pipes.
Try keeping an empty jar or can to pour grease or oil into which can then be recycled.
Toilet paper is specifically designed to break down when wet and is the only paper product you should flush down the toilet. Paper towels, feminine hygiene products, and even tissues will flush but will form a clog. It is best to recycle these products or throw them in the trash.
Even if you follow all these suggestions, clogs are bound to happen and you should never be tempted to use Drano or a caustic liquid drain cleaner. If you’re experiencing a drain problem, calling in a professional plumbing contractor is a better way to protect your pipes. Many of our clients in Victoria, BC find scheduling regular drain maintenance with Goodsense Plumbing and Drainage a good preventative measure.