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How do you clear/prevent clogged bathroom sink drains?


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Is there anything easier than taking apart the drain pull and snaking out the pipe? 

Plumbers have told us not to use Drano, and since our house was built in 1947 I'm inclined to believe it's a bad idea to put corrosive liquids in our old pipes.

I've made halfhearted attempts to use those enzyme preventative treatments, but not enough to know if regular use actually prevents clogs. Has anyone had luck with preventative enzymes, or anything else? 

It's the creepy expanding black gunk that's the problem, not hair. 

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5 minutes ago, Acadie said:

Hmmm, so you just put the suction flush with the sink and it sucks up the gunk? 


I usually have to put some plastic wrap or something around by suction end because I can’t get a tight enough fit otherwise-

has to be type of vacuum okay with water

it does suck out a lot of gunk !

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32 minutes ago, Acadie said:

Is there anything easier than taking apart the drain pull and snaking out the pipe? 

Plumbers have told us not to use Drano, and since our house was built in 1947 I'm inclined to believe it's a bad idea to put corrosive liquids in our old pipes.

I've made halfhearted attempts to use those enzyme preventative treatments, but not enough to know if regular use actually prevents clogs. Has anyone had luck with preventative enzymes, or anything else? 

It's the creepy expanding black gunk that's the problem, not hair. 

I have used the enzyme cleaners. I have an old house and am scared of pipes getting damaged and hence stick to enzymes.

For overflowing drain pipes and for maintenance of your main sewage lines: Try to look for "Main Line Cleaners". They clean out the entire main sewage line starting at your bathroom. You have to be very careful to use it in a time period where no one will use the bathrooms (or any other water outlet) for 8-10 hours in order for it to work. Sometimes I need to use two applications on back to back days to clear out all the blockages. I choose Saturday night after everyone goes to bed to apply it and all of us sleep in, so we get almost 10 hours for the cleaner to work. Then, the important step is to boil the biggest pot of water that you can on your stove and bring it to bubbling hot and then dump it down the drain where you put this cleaner in. This will dislodge all the loosened gunk. Then, open all the water faucets that are in your bathrooms simultaneously and make them all dump the hottest water possible into the drains. Five minutes of this will clear the entire drain. I live in an old house and plumbers costed $850 with fancy cameras to clean out my overflowing drain the last time we had an emergency. So, I have learned to deal with it myself.

For overflowing bath drain: https://www.amazon.com/Green-Gobbler-Ultimate-Cleaner-Remover/dp/B0149L455G

For toilets, I used 3 applications of this and the one toilet in my house that had problems is now clear:

https://www.amazon.com/Roebic-Laboratories-Inc-Cleaner-32-Ounce/dp/B000BPIM1I

For my washer which also is hooked to the old drain and overflows due to lint buildup, I used this:

https://www.amazon.com/Green-Gobbler-Liquid-Remover-cleaner/dp/B085FS4JTD

If you are up to shopping at Lowe's or HD (I don't go there due to the pandemic) they have the same products at a cheaper price. They will also do curbside delivery and free shipping for $35 purchase (HD does).

Edited by mathnerd
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I have a few tricks for clogged drains.

Spoon baking soda in them, then dump in vinegar,  it will eat away at the soap scum clinging to whatever is clogging the drain.  I have a hook thing I made from an old hanger and stick down to pull up hair and junk from the top.  I get everything I can out, then dump in more baking soda and vinegar over and over- as much as I can until its running clear.  If it doesn't clear, then I boil a big pot of water on the stove- while continuing the baking soda vinegar (i can hear it bubbling deep down).  Once the water is boiling,  i carry it to the tub and dump in.  It may take a second, but usually the clog will have loosened from all the vinegar baking soda, and the hot water will push it on out!  

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For overflowing bath drain: https://www.amazon.com/Green-Gobbler-Ultimate-Cleaner-Remover/dp/B0149L455G

For toilets, I used 3 applications of this and the one toilet in my house that had problems is now clear:

https://www.amazon.com/Roebic-Laboratories-Inc-Cleaner-32-Ounce/dp/B000BPIM1I

For my washer which also is hooked to the old drain and overflows due to lint buildup, I used this:

https://www.amazon.com/Green-Gobbler-Liquid-Remover-cleaner/dp/B085FS4JTD

If you are up to shopping at Lowe's or HD (I don't go there due to the pandemic) they have the same products at a cheaper price. They will also do curbside delivery and free shipping for $35 purchase (HD does).

 

 

THANKS!!

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Every once in a while, I use a dryer vent cleaner (the wand with a bunch of bristles on it) to clear out whatever gunk I can. Then I pour a few gallons of boiling water through it.

Amy Dacyzyn, of the Tightwad Gazette, recommended a gallon of boiling water monthly for prevention. 

We also use extra traps to try to prevent the problem before it begins. We buy a bunch at the hardware store about once a year. I need to clean them every once in a while, and if they get too gunky, I boil them. It seems to help.

Emily

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i got these ~1ft long snake things from the dollar store -- they are plastic and have multiple hooks on each side.  They work WAY better than drano for us, since most of our problem is long hairs caught near the top.  They are DISGUSTING to use though.

They look something like this, but thicker/less bendy

Amazon snake thingie

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