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Unblocking Drains DIY

A lot of domestic drain blockages are caused by people putting things such as grease and fat in to their drains, or from a build-up of hair in the bath or shower plug hole. Another thing could be flushing items such as nappies down the toilet. The blockages can cause drainage problems and un-savoury smells but can be solved with products that are widely available for unblocking drains. DIY enthusiasts or even people with no DIY experience can fix even tough blockages.


The first thing to know when finding out about unblocking drains DIY style is that the prevention is always better than the cure! Many blockages can be prevented by taking a couple of steps to keep your drains clear. Removing hair from plug holes after bathing, not pouring greases in to drains and not flushing large items down the toilet seem obvious but these little things can prevent obstructions in your drainage system. Flushing hot water and detergent down the drains every couple of weeks will keep drains clean and clear.

Finding the blockage

If you do have a blockage you will need to locate where it is inside the pipe, drain rods can be a good tool for this and unblocking drains, DIY stores across the country will stock these. Drain rods can be attached together to create the length that you require. If you have found the blockage with the rod then sometimes it can be removed by prodding it. For kitchen or bathroom sink blockages it may be wise to unscrew the piping or U bend underneath the plug hole, a lot of items get stuck in the bend such as food or gunk. Be sure to have towels or rags to catch any excess water.

Solving the problem

If you have located the blockage or it can`t be felt but water is still not flowing correctly, you should try to flush hot water down the pipe if this does not work then it may require the unblocking drains DIY favourite, the plunger! As simple a tool as they are plungers can solve most drain blockages. The push and pull motion creates force in two directions, compression and suction which causes items to become dislodged. A tool called tool power plunger can be purchased to take away some of the physicality of plunging.

Drain clearing chemicals can be an excellent product for unblocking drains. DIY stores have a range of these that can be picked up at reasonable prices. Using chemicals is the easiest way to remove blockages to drains and work most of the time. They will have instructions for you to follow on the labelling, but they usually work something like this:

You start by pouring the chemical in to the blocked drain, and then leave to work for a period of time (20 minutes to one hour). They ingredients in the drain clearer will break down the blockage and is then flushed away by boiling the kettle and pouring the water in to the drain.

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