Clogged Drains – 5 Ways to Prevent Them

plunging a clogged drainClogged drains are a common problem that most homeowners will have to deal with at some point. Unfortunately, clogs tend to happen at the worst possible time, like when you have a big party or a houseful of overnight guests!

So, what can you do to prevent these inconvenient and sometimes embarrassing problems? We round up five quick tips you can use today to keep your drains running freely.

Be careful what you put in your drains

Coffee grounds, hair, cooking grease, and soap scum are four of the drain’s worst enemies. So you should do everything within your power to ensure they don’t end up in your kitchen or bathroom drains. Store the grease safely in old coffee cans and dispose of them in the trash. Coffee grounds should also be disposed of in the trash.  To minimize exposure to hair and soap scum, cover drain openings with screens or drain gates.

Bonus Tip: Used coffee grounds are high in nitrogen and can be added to organic compost to help feed your plants and improve aeration and drainage in your flower and vegetable gardens.

Run hot water through the drains after each use

Hot water helps keep oils in foods running down the drain rather than building up on the interior surfaces of the drain pipes. You can run the hot water together with baking soda or vinegar for better results. Both baking soda and vinegar are terrific cleaning agents. Baking soda can also help absorb foul odors while vinegar is an excellent solvent that can help remove soap and scum buildup.

Keep popup stoppers clean

Pop-up stoppers, often found in bathroom basins, are very effective at preventing clogs.  However, these same stoppers can accumulate buildup from soap scum and hairballs as well as other residues, often leading to clogged drains. To minimize the risk, pull out the stoppers every two to three months and clean them thoroughly.

Consider a biological cleaner to prevent clogs

When poured down a drain, biological drain cleaners break down the bad bacteria caused by decomposing hair, food, and grease that can cause clogs. Bacteria-based cleaners are available in granular and liquid forms and are available at most local hardware and “big-box” stores.  They contain no chemicals that can harm your pipes or septic system, so they can be applied frequently.  Keep in mind, however, that they are designed to help prevent clogs, and not intended as a remedy for clogged drains.

Clean drains regularly

Can you remember the last time you cleaned your drains? For most homeowners, it could be last year! Some people even believe that you should only clean the drain when it becomes clogged.  When it comes to clogged drains, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. To prevent clogs from occurring in the first place, drains should be cleaned periodically because things like soap residue build up over time.

Unfortunately, clogs can occur even if you follow all these tips.  When they do, call Evergreen Plumbing and Heating for fast, reliable drain cleaning services in Rhode Island.