If the bathroom drains around your house are prone to clogging, you’re likely treating them improperly or your plumbing system needs an upgrade. For most households, though, bathroom drain blockages come down to one simple thing: letting the wrong stuff flow down the drains.
At Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning, we understand how easy it can be to clog up a bathroom drain. In fact, of all the drains throughout your house, the ones in the bathroom are the most likely to clog. Fortunately, however, you can prevent those blockages, and all it requires on your part is a little bit of diligence. Below, we’ve outlined X easy actions you can take to keep your bathroom drains flowing freely.
How to Avoid Bathtub and Shower Drain Blockages
Grossed out by standing water when you take a shower? Good news: you can avoid this issue altogether by practicing a little bit of preventative drain maintenance. Here’s how to keep your shower drains clean:
● Install a drain cover or strainer. The average person loses several strands of hair during a shower, and those strands usually flow directly into the drain. To avoid hair-based drain blockages, all you need to do is install a drain strainer (sometimes called a cover) to catch hair as it flows toward the drain opening.
● Flush the drain. Since soap scum buildup is common in showers and bathtubs, it’s never a bad idea to flush those drains with boiling hot water on a routine basis. The hot water will soften any buildup and carry it through the remainder of the pipe.
● Avoid using oil-based moisturizers in the shower. Though in-shower moisturizers are popular, they’re not ideal for maintaining free-flowing drains. When you use an oil-based, in-shower moisturizer, you must rinse it off before exiting the shower. And unfortunately, those oils travel straight into the drain where they accumulate along the inner walls of the pipe over time. When enough sludge builds up, it can slow or even halt water flow.
How to Avoid Toilet Drain Clogs
If you’re all too familiar with the panicky feeling of watching water spill over the sides of your toilet bowl, it’s time to change your habits. Though most toilet drain blockages are caused by excess waste in the pipe, some of those clogs form for other reasons, most of which are tied to the substances you flush down the toilet. To keep your toilet flushing smoothly, heed the following tips:
● Stop using so much toilet paper. Using excess toilet paper is probably the most common cause of toilet drain clogs there is. Though that paper is designed to break down, it doesn’t begin dissolving instantly, and when there’s too much of it in the pipe, it can’t get past the p-trap or floor drain. If you need to use a bunch of toilet paper, use a little bit, flush the toilet, use a little bit more, and flush again.
● Don’t use your toilet as a trash can. The only substances that belong in your toilet are human waste and toilet paper — nothing else. Ever. Even “flushable” wipes aren’t great for your plumbing, so avoid them if you can. The same idea applies to feminine hygiene products. If it doesn’t belong in a toilet, toss it in the trash.
● Keep the toilet lid closed. In households with children, foreign objects (usually toys) are a common cause of drain blockages. To help prevent those items from falling into the toilet into the first place, always keep the lid closed when the toilet is not in use.
● Do not put grease in your toilet. Grease, oil, and other fats never belong in any of your household drains! When you flush oily substances down the toilet, the cold water in the pipes immediately causes those substances to solidify. They then build up along the inner walls of the pipes, and when enough of that sludge accumulates, it can slow or prevent water flow through the system.
How to Avoid Bathroom Sink Drain Clogs
If your bathroom sink backs up when you brush your teeth or wash your hands, a variety of things could be causing the clog. Keep the following tips in mind to keep your sink drains clean:
● Clean the p-trap. Plenty of things can get stuck in the p-trap of your bathroom sink, and when they get lodged in there, they’ll prevent water from flowing freely down the drain. To prevent these types of clogs, make sure you clean the p-trap on a regular basis, and if you have a slow drain, check the p-trap first. All you need to do is detach the u-shaped section of the pipe beneath your bathroom sink, pull out any gunk that’s stuck in there, and give it thorough scrub with an old toothbrush or long-handled scrubber.
● Use a drain strainer. If you comb your hair or shave over the bathroom sink, there’s a good chance plenty of hair accumulates inside the drain. And when enough hair collects in there, it will form a dense drain blockage that can prevent water from flowing past. To keep hair from flowing into the drain in the first place, consider installing a drain strainer, which you can purchase for just a couple bucks at your local home improvement store.
● Flush the drain regularly. Often, soap scum accumulates inside bathroom sink drains, and when it begins to coat the pipes, it can slow water flow. To control that buildup, all you need to do is flush your drains with boiling hot water on a regular basis. The hot water will soften the scum buildup and allow it to flow through the remainder of the pipe.
Need Professional Drain Cleaning? Contact Drain Blaster Bill’s Today
If your bathroom drains aren’t flowing as they should, get in touch with our team at Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning. We specialize in standard drain cleaning, water jetting, and camera drain inspections for Twin Cities residents and can schedule same-day service for your convenience. To learn more about services, request a free estimate, or schedule a service appointment, feel free to give our Stillwater, MN office a call at 763-913-8719 or send us a message, and we’ll get back to you promptly.