Removing Stubborn Drain Clogs
Almost every household experiences hair clogs at some point. Whether you use a drain stopper or not, hair still finds a way to accumulate in your drain after some time, leading to a blocked drain. Does this mean that you should stop shaving in your bathroom? Not at all! There are a number of ways to prevent the accumulation of lumps of hair clogs in your drain. Some of these ways include:
- Buy a drain screen or a shower drain hair catcher. Even though it may cost you a few coins to get one, drain screens effectively prevent massive hair clogs in your drains.
- Clean the shower drain hair catcher regularly.
- Run sufficient water while you shave. This helps carry the hair down the drain immediately, thus preventing their accumulation.
- Brush your hair before taking a shower.
Nonetheless, there are various simple methods that you could apply to remove hair from your drain. Most of the methods listed in this article are simple DIY practices that should not cost you a lot of money or time.
Remember, it is always best to try simple domestic approaches before resorting to chemicals that may end up dangerous to your drains. At the same time, you may be able to save on extra expenses by trying these simple procedures before you consider calling a professional.
Now, let’s get right into how to get the hair out of your drain.
Methods To Get Hair Out Of Drains
Use Hot Water
This approach may not always be effective on its own, but there is no harm in trying. It could also be a practical first-line approach of removing hair from your drain before using other means.
Here, you need to boil water and flush it down your drain as it may help break down any grease or soap substance that holds matted air in your drain. Once the clog is loose, it could easily flow down your drain carried by the hot water.
Use Baking Soda and White Vinegar
Baking soda and vinegar are typically available in most households. Plus, they are cheap, and their effect works wonders. While they are most often used in cleaning, they are also very effective in removing clogs such as hair. Their application is straightforward, and for best results, start by applying a small amount of dish soap into your drain.
Then, add a cup of white vinegar followed by a cup of baking soda. Allow the two substances ample time to take effect. They produce a fizzing reaction that easily breaks down the clog. Finally, run some boiling water down into your drain to rinse away any remaining clogs.
Use a Zip-It Tool
A zip-it tool is a barbed stick made of plastic used in drain cleaning. It is long and flexible, thus efficient for the process. A zip-it tool is also more economical since it’s cheap, recyclable, and easily disposable. If you have one, simply insert it into your drain. While you pull it back, the barbs will get hold of the hair in the drain and enable you to pull them out.
For best results, gently twist the zip-it tool as you insert it and pull it back out. Even though a zip-it tool is flexible enough to be used in drains with stoppers, it is always best to remove the drain stopper first.
Once you are done, rinse your drain with hot water. If you like, you can follow this method with vinegar and baking soda, as described above.
Hair clogs sometimes make using a plunger to unclog drains difficult due to their stringy nature. Therefore, as a result, it may be necessary to use a pair of tweezers to pull them out. However, remember to wear protective gloves since the process may get messy.
The first step in using a pair of tweezers is removing the drain stopper if your drain has one. Some drains have easily removable stoppers, while others may require you to use a screwdriver to unscrew the drain stopper. No matter how your drain stopper was fixed, ensure that you clean out the hairs on it. After that, use a source of light for easier visibility into the drain. Once you have a clear view of the hairs, use the pair of tweezers to remove the accumulated hairs out of your drain. Finally, flush down sufficient hot water into the drain to rinse away any remaining hair clogs.
Use a Hair Snake
This is another good tool that you could use in removing hair from your drain. Even though a hair snake may not remove all the hair, it can effectively remove accumulated hair. To do this, insert the hair snake down into your drain while you keep twisting it gently. Then, pull it back out. It is best to flush hot water down into your drain after removing the hair snake. This would help to rinse off any hair remaining in the drain.
Use a Vacuum
This approach is most effective when the grease or soap build-up is still young and the hair accumulation is not too deep into the drain. However, it is best to ensure that your drain is dry and uncovered when vacuuming. In this approach, plug the top of the drain using a nozzle attachment and have your vacuum at the highest level for better results.
This method is not very efficient on its own. However, it may be very effective when used after the other approaches mentioned above.
Use a Plumbing Snake
A plumber’s snake, also known as a drain auger, is an effective tool used to remove tough clogs out of drains. If you don’t have one in your home, you can get it from a hardware store. Using a plumbing snake is as easy as the other methods already mentioned in this article.
First, you will need to insert the plumbing snake down into your drain until it reaches the clog of hair accumulation. Gently turn the handle of the auger while you pull it back out to remove the hair accumulation. Once you are done, flush hot water into your drain to rinse off any remaining hair particles.
Remove the Whole Drain
This method is a last resort, and you should only consider it when all the other methods mentioned above fail to be effective. It is more intense, and you will need a plug wrench, adjustable wrench, flat-head screwdriver, standard pliers, locking needle-nose pliers, and a pair of gloves.
Once you have all these, it is time to begin:
- First, remove your drain stopper, then insert a plug wrench into the opening of the drain. Fit the plug wrench into the drain’s crossbars.
- Hold the plug wrench firmly with a pair of pliers and move it in an anti-clockwise direction to loosen the drain.
- Next, remove the plug wrench and push down the needle-nose pliers. At this moment, you need to lock the needle-nose pliers as you clamp them around the X crossbar inside the drain.
- Using the conventional pliers, hold the needle-nose pliers down into the drain and gently move them in an anti-clockwise direction to grab as much hair as possible.
- Once you feel that the clog has become loose, pull the needle-nose pliers back out and remove the hairs.
- Finally, flush enough water down the drain. If possible, use hot water to obtain better results.
Don’t Stress Over It, Just Call A Professional
The methods outlined in this article are primarily domestic, and you can do them yourself. Not only are they more economical and easy to do, but they also do not require the use of liquid or chemical drain cleaners. Chemical drain cleaners may be effective in cleaning drains and getting rid of hair accumulations, but they are also highly likely to corrode inside your drain.
Therefore, they should always be the very last approach when all the other methods fail.
Sometimes, when you have to clean hair out of a drain, it can be tough, tiresome, and messy. Some may not have the confidence or time to do it themselves. If this is the case for you, do not hesitate to call an experienced professional to help you. Good drainage for your drain is essential and prevents unnecessary inconveniences.