How Drain Cleaners Work
Organic materials create problems in plumbing systems. Grease, hair, food particles, and paper going down the drain can clog your pipes and slow or stop draining of your system. Clogged drains are best serviced by a trained plumber who can identify the problem and fix it correctly. How do they do it, though? There’s a few different ways:
• Mechanical Drain Cleaner: Plumber’s snakes are long coils that slink down pipes and can grab or push along any obstructions that may be causing a blockage. They also clean the sides of pipes by dislodging deposits of oil and minerals caked onto the side. Mechanical drain cleaners are a safe and efficient way to clear up a drain without using caustic chemicals.
• Alkaline Drain Cleaner: Alkaline cleaners use strong bases to break up and dissolve organic blockages. Usually, they contain lye. As the bases in the cleaner react with the organic material in the drain, they release heat, which helps to free up grease caked on the edge of a pipe. However, alkaline drain cleaners can be very toxic and harmful to humans, as well as cause damage to pipes or the environment.
• Acid Drain Cleaner: Acid drain cleaners are similar to alkaline drain cleaners. They use strong acids, like hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid, to dissolve and dislodge organic material stuck in drains, while also releasing heat to help melt grease. Acidic drain cleaners are even more dangerous than alkaline drain cleaners, and should not be used by untrained people as they can cause severe injury if used incorrectly, as well as further damaging your plumbing.
• Bacterial Drain Cleaners: These environmentally friendly drain cleaners use bacteria and enzymes to get rid of organic matter in a clog. They are a lot safer than acidic and alkaline drain cleaners, but work a lot slower as a result. They are also ineffective at clearing total blockages since they require flowing water to work perfectly.
Trying to clear a blockage yourself can create a greater issue and cost you more money in the end. What’s the best way to deal with a clogged drain? Call a plumber! Give us a ring at (972) 931-1021 or fill out our contact us form! Don’t risk your pipes or more expense!