Common causes of blocked drains and tips to unclog it

Blocked drains can happen for any number of reasons, but for most of us, they’re caused by a clog. You might think that a clog is a simple problem to fix, but the truth is that it’s one of the most frustrating and time-consuming plumbing issues there are. Most homeowners have tried clogging remedies in the past, but not surprisingly, most of them haven’t been successful. To avoid dealing with this issue yourself, read on for the most common causes of drain blockage, and some ways to prevent and unclog the blocked drains.

Common causes of Blocked Drains are as follows:

1. Hair

The clog may be the result of hair becoming caught in your drains, which creates a buildup of material that eventually begins to solidify and form into a blockage.

2. Wax or grease

If wax, grease, or soap products end up in your drain, they may begin to harden into a blockage.

3. Detergents

Detergent residues can create blockages. Soap scum can also build up in your drains. If this happens, run a plunger or something similar through your drains to remove the buildup.

4. Food and other debris

When food goes down your sink or toilet, it can cause the water level to rise and then overflow or back up into the drain. This makes it very difficult to see whether or not your pipes are clogged.

5. Plumbing problems

If you are experiencing water problems such as a slow flow rate or water leaking from your home’s plumbing system, this could lead to blockages in your drains.

Tips to Unclog the Blocked Drains

1. Plunger

A simple way to unclog blocked drains is to insert a rubber or plastic plunger, depending on the size of the clog, into the pipe until the clog is dislodged. However, the plungers that are available to homeowners usually don’t have enough force to remove all types of clogs.

2. Vacuum

For a small clog, using a hand-held vacuum (also called a snake) is effective. Using the vacuum may require some practice to get the proper suction to work effectively. The suction will be the greatest near the base of the clog. The vacuum should not be used for long periods of time, or it could damage pipes or sewer lines.

3. Drain Snake

Use a drain snake to clear your blocked drains . The drain snake has a small loop that you thread through the drain’s opening. Once the snake is inserted, pull the loop until it reaches the clog, then push it back into the drain and slowly back it out.

4. Baking Soda

Mix equal parts baking soda and hot water. Pour the solution down the drain and let it sit for 30 minutes. This will help dissolve any debris in the drain. If necessary, repeat the process.

5. Boiling Water

Put a few cups of boiling water in the bottom of the sink and allow it to sit overnight. In the morning, you can drain your sink and replace the water with cold tap water. Repeat this process every few hours as needed.

6. Chemical Treatment

Chemical treatment is an effective way to clear blocked drains. This method is typically used by commercial businesses because they have the equipment and the expertise to do the treatment. It should be used only as a last resort as it involves injecting chemicals into the drain, which can cause damage to the pipes or sewer lines. It also has the potential to pollute water bodies.

7. Hire a Professional Plumber

If all the above methods fail to fix your clogged drain, then it’s time to call in a professional plumber. They will have the right tools and equipment to find out where the clog is coming from and how to get rid of it. You can also find several plumbers in your nearby areas online. For example if you are living somewhere in Toronto you just need to Google it like the “best Toronto Plumbers near me” or the “best plumbers in Toronto”. You can easily narrow down your search to find the best one that suits your needs.

Read More about plumbing glossary


Pipes, drains and gutters all play an important role in keeping your home and property safe. But when there’s a problem with any of these, it can be easy to ignore them. But ignoring a minor repair could cause bigger problems later on. And while every homeowner should know how to maintain and repair their property’s pipes, and unclog the blocked drains.

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