Drain Cleaning and Maintenance Tips
Cleaning the drain in the kitchen sink or the bathroom is one of the most uplifting and personally satisfying household chores. These is little more fulfilling than cleaning out the drain and watching the water pass smoothly through the pipes. But how does one get such a clean drain, you may be asking? And how often should I maintain my drain to get this remarkable benefit? The answer lies in both how dirty your drain is and how motivated you are to do whatever it takes to get it clean and keep it in good condition. Many people often resort to harsh chemical drain openers to clean out a drain, but there are actually a number of easier and more environmentally friendly methods of cleaning a drain. Here are some tips for everyday drain maintenance.
Use Green Products
Cleaning a drain is a easy as making use of common natural household products like baking soda, vinegar, and citrus fruits. Both for unclogging a blocked drain and improving the smell, there are plenty of ordinary items you can use to get you drain clean without resorting to harsh commercial chemical cleaners. For many household cleaning jobs, a simple hot water, baking soda, and white vinegar solution works great to clean, unclog, and deodorize.
Pour a cup of baking soda into the drain and follow it with a cup of white vinegar. Let the solution sit for a few minutes to break up any clogs and then flush the drain with hot water. This should break up any clogs deep in the drain and help clean it in the process. For deeper clogs, you may need to use a pipe snake before employing this method. Finally, throw some lemon or lime peels in the garbage disposal and grind them up for a fresh smell when you’re done. This is a cheap, simple, and effective way of cleaning and deodorizing drains without using harmful chemicals.
Clear Hair and Objects
Hair accumulation in the drain is one of the primary causes of clogs. Keeping hair out of the drain by removing excess after using the sink or showering will help prevent hair based clogs. Doing this regularly will keep hair from building up and causing problems later. Installing a drain sieve or cover to catch excess hair and prevent it from running into the drain is a good preventative measure to take. Even with a drain sieve, however, a lot of hair still makes it into the drain, so monitor this and remove visible hair from the drain when possible.
Keeping objects out of the drain will also help keep you drain cleaner and free of preventable clogs from things like bottle caps and silverware. When washing dishes, be aware of any objects that may have slipped into the garbage disposal and remove them carefully. These items can damage the garbage disposal if it is turned on. If small objects become trapped in the drain you may have to remove the u-shaped section of pipe that serves to catch objects passing through the pipes and take the object out. Remaining aware of what goes in the drain and regularly cleaning and maintaining drains will ensure that your home plumbing system is reliable and in good condition.