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Introduction to Common Causes of Blocked Drains

Many blocked drains in Cherrybrook can be effectively addressed with simple DIY methods. A blocked drain can result from several issues, including:

  • Food waste: Oils, grease, and food scraps that go down the drain can accumulate, causing blockages.
  • Hair: Entangled clusters can obstruct pipes and impede water flow.
  • Foreign objects - Small items flushed down the drain can inadvertently get wedged in the pipes, causing blockages.
  • Tree roots - Roots from nearby trees and shrubs can grow into and damage underground drain pipes.

Understanding the common causes of blocked drains in your area helps you pinpoint the most effective solutions. For example, areas with more trees and vegetation may deal more often with invasive root growth issues. Awareness of the local plumbing conditions is also beneficial.

While blocked drains originate from a diverse spectrum of sources, the good news is your household may resolve many minor clogs using straightforward DIY drain cleaning methods before needing professional services.

Quick Household Ingredients to Try Before Calling a Professional

Before calling a plumber for a blocked drain, consider trying a combination of baking soda vinegar as a home remedy first. Explore how clear blocked drains with household items like soda vinegar, dish soap, and hot water.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

Mixing one cup of baking soda with one cup of vinegar triggers a chemical reaction that can dislodge buildup inside pipes.

After letting the mixture sit for at least an hour, flush it with water to effectively dislodge debris.

Boiling Water

Pouring boiling water judiciously down the drain can dissolve grease accumulation, assisting in debris removal. Follow up with cool water to rinse through without compromising the pipes.

Dish Soap

Squirt dish soap down the drain and let it work for 5-10 minutes, then use boiling hot water to more effectively clear a blocked drain. The soap aids in clearing blocked passages, helping grease dissolve so it can wash away when you pour a pot of boiling water down after. Repeat if needed.

Items like baking soda and vinegar can clear many small blockages effectively. It’s crucial, though, to know when to call a professional if these DIY solutions don’t work after multiple attempts.

Baking Soda, Vinegar and Boiling Water

The combination of baking soda, vinegar and boiling water is a potent and effective DIY approach for tackling minor drain blockages. The chemical reaction caused by mixing baking soda and vinegar helps break down buildup inside pipes.

Follow these steps for the baking soda, vinegar and boiling water drain treatment:

  1. Pour two cups of baking soda down the drain, focusing on the blockage.
  2. Let the baking soda sit for a few minutes to coat the inside of the pipes.
  3. After the baking soda, pour a cup of vinegar into the drain to initiate the fizzy reaction needed to break down blockages. This will initiate a fizzy chemical reaction.
  4. Let the mixture sit for half hour, allowing it time to dismantle the residue.
  5. Boil a large pot of water for use in the next step.
  6. Carefully pour the boiled water down the drain to flush out the loosened debris.
  7. Flush with cool water into the drain after 5 minutes to clear any residue and avoid damaging PVC pipes with excess heat.

Instead of reaching for a caustic cleaner, consider an eco-friendly mix of natural ingredients like baking soda, white vinegar, and hot water to clear simple blocked drains yourself before contacting a professional.

Unclogging Drains with a Plunger

Using a plunger, an uncomplicated and readily available tool, serves as a convenient and cost-effective DIY approach to address clogged drains before considering professional assistance.

  1. Fill the sink one-third full with water to ensure there’s enough to submerge the plunger. Make sure the drain opening is fully submerged.
  2. Wearing a pair of rubber gloves for protection, position the plunger over the drain to create a strong seal for effective plunging.
  3. Plunge quickly and forcefully up and down at least 15 times to create suction and loosen the blockage.
  4. Remove the plunger and proceed to flush drain with hot water to do its work and wash away dislodged gunk.

For toilets, a bellows-style plunger is preferred, as it creates a more effective seal.

Consistent plunging generates pressure pulses that can shift obstructions in a clogged drain. It’s useful for removing buildups like hair, grease, and mild soap scum facilitated by drain cleaners before they harden. Although not a panacea, it’s worth a shot to try using basic plunging techniques before resorting to more intricate snaking methods.

Using a Wire Hanger to Fish Out Blockages

A straightened wire hanger can serve as a homemade drain snake, perfect for pulling out hair clumps and other debris. This DIY approach should be used with caution, as improper handling of the drain can also lead to scratching or damaging drain pipes.

  1. Unbend a metal wire coat hanger into a long piece of wire.
  2. Create a small hook at one end by bending a 1-inch section.
  3. Place a bucket underneath your drain to catch water and dislodged debris as you clean out the blockage.
  4. Gently feed the hooked end into the drain, being cautious not to exceed 3 inches in depth.
  5. Gently pull out trapped debris by moving the wire hook back and forth to snag hair and other obstructions.
  6. Remove any objects brought up by the hook then reinsert to check for additional blockages.
  7. Pour boiling water into drain afterwards to help clear residue.

While this method can remove hair and loose debris, it risks harming the integrity of your drain pipe if handled forcefully. Never use a wire hanger snake as a cure-all substitute for treating your blocked drain with professional cleaning services.

Tips for Preventing Future Drain Blockages

Preventing future drain blockages involves practices that keep your household habits in check and employing simple maintenance measures over time. Here are some tips:

Use Drain Strainers

Employ strainers in showers and sinks to intercept clog-inducing materials like hair and food remnants, and be diligent about cleaning them.

Proper Disposal of Fats and Oils

Cool down cooking oil and grease until solidified, then dispose of them in the rubbish bin to prevent clogs. Over time, oil build up can clog your pipes.

Take Care with Non-Flushable Items

Refrain from flushing items other than toilet paper, like wipes and feminine hygiene products, as they can cause snags and blockages in your plumbing. Use trash cans instead.

Use Baking Soda and Vinegar

As a preventive measure, regularly flush your drains with a mixture of bicarb soda and cream of tartar. Let it sit for 15 minutes then rinse with hot water. This prevents buildup inside pipes before serious clogs occur.

Incorporating these simple practices into your maintenance routine can help keep your drains free-flowing and minimise clogs. But if significant blockages still occur, call your local plumber for assistance.

When to Call a Professional Plumber

While you can likely address minor drain blockages with DIY methods, it’s crucial to know when professional help is needed. If attempts to unblock drain with household ingredients, boiling water, makeshift snakes, or a plunger have failed, bringing in a licenced plumber may be your next step.

If you notice these key signs of a blocked drain, it’s time to call for expert intervention:

  • Water backing up persistently or overflowing from drains or toilets despite DIY efforts
  • Gurgling sounds coming from pipes accompanying sluggish drainage
  • Strong sewage odours around drains
  • Multiple drains or toilets clogging throughout your home
  • Noticing cracks, leaks, or rupture damage during inspection

For complicated blockages or problems within the plumbing system, the expertise and equipment of a professional are necessary. At Cherrybrook Plumbing, our licenced technicians have the advanced tools and expertise to accurately diagnose issues and provide reliable solutions.

We use state-of-the-art drain inspection cameras to locate blockages, hydro jetting to thoroughly clean pipes, and repair methods tailored to your unique situation with precision. With 20+ years serving the Cherrybrook area, we have an intricate understanding of local infrastructure needed to address problems efficiently.

Don’t hesitate to call our office at 1300 349 338 if you suspect the blockage is severe. Our team is always ready to assist residential and commercial customers whenever drain problems arise.

Contact Cherrybrook Plumbing for Prompt Service

If persistent blocked drains defy your DIY efforts, consider enlisting the expertise of Cherrybrook Plumbing. Our team of licenced professionals have the advanced tools and expertise to accurately diagnose issues and provide reliable solutions.

We use state-of-the-art drain inspection cameras to locate stubborn blockages other methods can’t reach. Our hydro jetting technology effectively purges grease, waste, and debris, resolving the root causes of clogs. And we determine the most effective repair approach tailored to your unique situation.

With 20+ years of experience serving Cherrybrook and surrounding areas, we understand local infrastructure and how to address problems efficiently. We even offer electronic pipe locating to prevent unnecessary digging and property damage.

Reach out to us at 1300 349 338 or jobs@cherrybrookplumbingservices.com.au for immediate assistance. Our knowledgeable staff is ready to take your call 24/7.

From blocked drains and burst pipes to hot water system repairs, leaky taps and more - trust Cherrybrook Plumbing to handle all your residential and commercial plumbing needs.

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