Even though it’s easy to reach for a commercial drain cleaner when your bathroom drains are sluggish, you should steer clear of these caustic or acidic products for several reasons. They hurt your pipes, they pollute, and, even if they don’t work, they make a danger for anyone who has to take apart the pipes. Rather, use a safer, more effective way to clear your drains. Plunging works better than you might think, if you do it properly, but if plunging isn’t your thing, P-traps are easy to disassemble. Moreover, a variety of household substances may double as drain cleaners.
Close to the stopper and fill the sink or tub with 2 inches of water; block the overflow holes around the sink rim or tub stopper with duct tape. Pull the stopper and immediately match a plunger securely around the drain and pump several times. You’re going to be pumping incompressible water — not air — through the pipes, rather than outside through the overflow holes. Just the most repetitive blockages will resist your efforts.
Pour 1 cup of baking soda down a slow-moving drain and then follow that with 2 to 3 cups of boiling water. If the drain is still moving slowly, then pour in a cup of washing soda, allow it to work for approximately 30 minutes, then duplicate the baking soda therapy.
Produce a fizzing activity from the drain by adding a cup of white vinegar after you do the baking soda therapy. Vinegar is a mild acid that complements the caustic action of baking soda.
Clean the P-trap, the curved pipe under the sink, if you don’t have any luck with the baking soda and vinegar therapies. It may have a clean-out nut on bottom that you may eliminate adjustable pliers, but otherwise, it”s simple to disassemble. You can usually unscrew the nuts on either end of it by hand, but otherwise, use adjustable pliers.
Pour the water from the snare to a bucket and pull out all of the debris and hair. Reach into the tailpiece, that’s the pipe extending down in the sink, and pull debris from it also.
Clean out the trash pipe using a sink auger if you guess that the blockage is beyond the P-trap. Insert the auger to the trash opening and push it in until it stops. Crank the handle to perform the mind through the obstruction.
Fit the snare back onto the pipes from which you removed it and then tighten the nuts by hand. Fill the sink, then open the drain and then watch for escapes from the snare. If you see any, tighten the nut with pliers.