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Clogged Drain? Here’s How to Unclog It Yourself

Clogged drains are one of the most common plumbing problems homeowners face. Clogs happen at the worst times—like when you sleep through your alarm and are going to be late for work but still decide to take a shower and now the water is overflowing onto the bathroom floor. But there is no need to worry! Although a clogged drain can be a major inconvenience, it is a relatively easy problem to fix! The plumbing experts at John Nugent & Sons have come up with a few ways you can unclog the drain yourself—just like a professional.

DIY Plumbing Tips

If you have a clogged drain, it’s important to think clearly and not do anything that could cause more harm than good. Here are some tricks to handle the messy situation:

  • Utilize your plunger. It’s the simplest and most effective way to remove a small clog. Keep in mind that there are different types of plungers (sink plungers AND toilet plungers), so make sure you’re using the most effective tool for your situation!
  • Use caution when using liquid drain cleaners. Not all drain cleaners are created equal. Some have harsh chemicals in them that can actually damage your pipes! Boiling water can be more effective than store bought products.
  • Vinegar and baking soda. Mix equal parts of the two ingredients and pour the mixture down the drain to dislodge the clog! The foam works to break apart whatever is blocking the pipe.
  • Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. For clogs in a sink drain, the blockage can sometimes be easily accessed by removing the drain pipe under the sink. Have your bucket and gloves ready—this can get messy.
  • Don’t panic. If you’re unable to fix the problem yourself, call the professionals at John Nugent & Sons. We are more than happy to assess and fix your plumbing problems.

Prevent Future Clogs

While the following prevention tips won’t help unclog a drain, they will reduce the number of plumbing issues in your future.

  • Do NOT put grease or oil down your kitchen drain. When grease, fat, and other oils cool down, they harden and can adhere to your pipes. The sludge can then hold onto other debris as it tries to pass through the pipe.
  • Use strainers on all drains. Hair is the culprit causing a shower drain to get clogged. Limiting the amount of hair that goes down the drain will reduce the blockage in your pipes.
  • Run water while using the garbage disposal. Keep running the water even AFTER you’ve turned off the disposal. This will clear the pipes of any remaining debris.
  • Think before you flush. Toilet paper is the only thing that should ever be flushed down the toilet (besides the obvious). Facial tissues, sanitary products, cotton balls, and diapers are not made to properly dissolve in water and will cause a clog if flushed down your toilet.

Plumbing Repair in Northern Virginia

When something goes wrong with your plumbing system, your first instinct might be to Google the problem and see what solutions come up in the results. Be careful—not everyone on the internet is a plumbing expert! But we are—for more advice, take a look at some of our other helpful plumbing tips. If you aren’t sure about fixing the repair yourself, contact us online or call us at 703-291-1926. When it comes to plumbing repairs, it’s better to be safe than sorry! The experts at John Nugent & Sons can come to your home and fix the problem so you can feel confident the issue was taken care of effectively and correctly.

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"John Nugent & Sons, I believe, is a model for a company with excellent management, superior service through cooperative scheduling and excellent service representatives."

J.A. – Leesburg, VA.

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