Cleaning Your Drains
Professional plumbers at Drain Terrier in Denver, Colorado, have a wide range of tools available that allow them to clean drains and clear clogs, including specialized equipment designed to blast apart stubborn obstructions and chemical additives that dissolve fat deposits. These tools are often used in conjunction with one another, and some plumbers specialize in certain types of cleanouts. A few specialties include hydro-cleaning, which uses high-pressure jets of water to dislodge blockages; hydro-jacking, which utilizes a similar technique to loosen dense clogs; and video inspection, where cameras mounted onto flexible probes allow plumbers to see what’s happening within drains without having to dig into the mess.
Plumbing issues can strike anyone at any time. Whether it’s a broken pipe, clogged sewer line, or even a leaking faucet, plumbing problems can cause severe damage to your home. While many ways to fix common plumbing issues, professional assistance is sometimes needed.
In fact, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), over half of all homes inspected during annual inspections contain hidden leaks. If you suspect water leakage in your home, call a professional plumber immediately to inspect the area and determine what needs to be done to repair the leak.
If you’ve ever had a complete bathroom sink backed up while brushing your teeth, you know how frustrating it can be. If you haven’t experienced it yourself, you might think there’s nothing wrong with your pipes. But even though most people never see a clogged drain, it frequently happens enough that many homeowners have tried their hand at fixing the problem themselves. Unfortunately, those attempts often end poorly.
Avoiding Clogged Drains
Clogged drains are a reasonably typical household issue. If you live somewhere where the weather is cold enough, there’s no doubt that you’ve experienced some sort of plumbing blockage at one point or another. While it might not be possible for homeowners to avoid clogged drains altogether, there are steps you can take to minimize the chances of such a problem occurring.
The easiest way to keep a drain clean is to ensure that it is always covered. This prevents debris and other material from getting into the pipes, which could cause issues down the road. You can do this by placing something like a trashcan lid over the opening of the drainage pipe. Another option is to use a garbage disposal cover. These types of covers are usually placed over the drain hole in the sink and prevent anything solid from being flushed down the drain.
You can also do things to reduce the likelihood of hair and grease clogging up your pipes. For example, don’t put grease down the drain because it will eventually get stuck inside the pipes and cause problems. Instead, place it in a container and dispose of it properly. Similarly, you shouldn’t flush used paper towels down the toilet either. Instead, throw those items in a bin and wash them out later.
Another thing you can do is to try to keep foods that tend to form lumps inside the kitchen sink. Food scraps that contain large amounts of grease or fat can plug up your pipes, so try to cut down on how much you eat. In addition, it’s important to remember that even though you think you cleaned your dishes thoroughly, there may still be traces of food left behind. Try washing your plates and utensils under running water to help clear out any leftover residue.
The good news is that most home clogs are caused by something simple and easy to fix. A few common culprits include hair, soap scum, food particles, grease, and pet waste. Some clogs are more manageable to clear out than others, but generally, it’s best to avoid chemicals altogether. Instead, try one of these four easy fixes:
Remove Hair From Sink Pipes
Hair gets caught in sinks and pipes because it doesn’t readily dissolve as water does. Use a plunger to dislodge the debris to prevent hair from getting stuck in the pipes. Then, run cold water down the pipe until the hair dissolves. You’ll probably need to do this several times over a day.
Clean Out Your Garbage Disposal
Most garburator problems stem from food scraps getting lodged inside the unit. This causes the motor to work harder, which leads to overheating. To keep things running smoothly, clean out the disposal regularly. Use a brush and warm water to loosen food bits collected around the grinding mechanism. Rinse the entire thing thoroughly with hot water when everything is cleared out.
Drains In Your Home
When it comes to plumbing, most people think about toilets, sinks, and showers. But did you know that there are many different types of pipes throughout your home? They include:
- Lateral Lines—These are the smallest pipes in your house. They connect to the kitchen sink, bathroom fixtures, and laundry room appliances.
- Main Lines—Main lines connect to the sewage treatment plant. They carry waste water away from your home.
- Kitchen Sink Drain – This is used to empty the sink basin and catch anything that falls down the drain while doing dishes.
- Bathroom Shower Drain – This is located inside the shower enclosure and empties wastewater from the shower head.
- Toilet Bowl Drain – This collects wastewater from the bowl and flushes it away.
- Garbage Disposal Drain – This is located under the sink next to the trash compactor. Wastewater gets pumped into the sewer system through this pipe.
- Water Heater Drain – This is found near the bottom of the tank and allows hot water to flow out of the heater.
- Hot Tub/Spa Drain – This is located outside the tub or spa enclosure and lets water run off safely.
Tools Used to Clean Drains
Clogged drains are probably something most homeowners deal with from time to time. They’re pretty standard, and there are many causes. Those causes include hair, soap scum, food particles, rust, grease, and even paper towels. Other times, the issue could be caused by sediment buildup inside the pipes. Whatever the case, once you know how to identify a clogged drain, you’ll be able to take care of the problem quickly and easily.
A manual drain snake, also called a plumbers’ snake, is a small, boring instrument that clears clogs in pipes. This snake is usually inserted into the pipe via a trap way near the drain. Once inside the pipe, the snake is rotated manually to feed itself deeper into the pipe. When the snake encounters a solid obstruction, it is pulled out of the pipe, and the process starts over again.
Motorized Drain Augers
Augers clear clogged pipes, drain lines, and sewer systems. There are many types of augers, including those designed specifically for use in sinks and toilets and others that are meant for clearing larger pipes. A standard auger consists of a handle, a shaft, and an auger head. You’ll find some models with a drill attachment, allowing you to bore holes into hard surfaces like concrete. Others come with attachments for cutting off sections of pipe.
These devices, also known as “motorized drain snakes,” are a more powerful version of the simple manual drain snakes you can find at hardware stores. They consist of a long metal coil with teeth that snake down into a drain until they reach the obstruction. Then, a motor turns the coil, causing it to drill down into the clog. Once inside, the teeth break it apart and dislodge it.
Only experienced plumbers should use a motorized drain auger because it could cause damage to pipes. Call us today if you’re having trouble getting rid of a clog. We’ll send someone over to help you out.
Drain Line Cameras
If you’ve ever tried to navigate a snake into a drain, you know how difficult it can be. Sometimes, even experienced plumbers struggle to find the actual problem. This is because many different things can cause a drain to become blocked. Some common culprits include tree roots, debris, grease build-up, and soap scum.
The high-def snake camera is a recent technological advancement that has helped the plumbing industry. These cameras allow your plumber to see inside pipes and identify the exact location of problems like root intrusion, cracks or breaks, and foreign objects. With this information, your plumber can make sure he’s targeting the correct area of your drain.
A hydro-jetter is a tool designed to help plumbers clear clogs in drains. This video shows how a plumber uses one to free a blocked toilet.
The hydro-jetter consists of a flexible plastic tube attached to a powerful pump. When the plumber pushes the plunger button, water flows through the tube and exits the tip of the nozzle.
This creates a strong jet of pressurized water, which helps dislodge debris from the pipes and drains.
Although a hydro-jetter works well for clearing blockages, it is essential to remember that you shouldn’t use one to perform plumbing repairs. Only call a licensed plumber to fix problems like leaks and burst pipes.
Contact Drain Terrier For Drain Cleaning Services
We are Drain Terrier plumbers. Our plumbing repair specialists offer everything from drain cleaning and water heater installation to pipe replacement and sewer inspection. For years, our team has been serving homeowners in Littleton, Colorado. When you choose us for your plumbing needs, you benefit from our experience, knowledge, and expertise. Call us today at 720-999-6120.