3 Household Items You Can Use To Unclog Your Drains


When your sink, toilet, or shower clogs, you have plenty of options to remove these stubborn plugs. Your first thought might be to go out and buy a store-bought drain cleaner to use on your clog, or maybe just call a plumber. However, there are a number of items that you have sitting around your house that can effectively and quickly clear out clogs from pipes.

Boiling Hot Water

Flushing your pipes two or three times with water that is boiling can clear out stubborn clogs quickly.

Boil a quart of water, and then pour about a third of that down the drain. Wait five minutes and repeat. You can try this method a few times, as it will likely take more than one pour to clear your drain. However, if you have flushed your sink more than ten times and it is still clogged, it may be time to call a plumber.

Vinegar and Baking Soda

Mixing vinegar and baking soda together is an effective way to clear stubborn clogs from your pipes.

Mix equal parts vinegar and baking soda, no more than 2/3rds of a cup each, and pour it down the drain the moment it starts reacting. The reaction of baking soda and vinegar produces fizzy sodium acetate and carbon dioxide. The fizz works to effectively clear out stuck on grime, hair, or other clogs in your pipes.

Sodium Hydroxide

Sodium Hydroxide, which you might know as lye or caustic soda, is a heavy duty compound often used for cleaning restaurant fryers. It can also be used as an effective drain cleaner.

Mix about a cup of cold water with 2 cups caustic soda and stir. The mixture will start to fizz up, and you should then dump it down the drain. Leave the caustic soda and water mixture in the drain for about 45 minutes, and then flush with water. Flush with the mixture 2 or 3 times for the best result.

If you notice that your drain is partially draining, or draining clear for a day or two and then clogging again, that is a clear indicator that more advanced help from a plumber is needed. You can also follow them on Twitter for more updates.

Benjamin Franklin Plumbing serves the Lake and Mendocino Counties and has been in business for more than 10 years. They provide services which include plumbing repair, leak detection, water treatment and more.