Steps To Unclog A Shower Drain
A number of different things from a major obstruction in your sewer line, to a small blockage in the pipe can cause clogged shower drains. Our team that does plumbing services Chantilly advise that you investigate the cause of the blockage sooner rather than later to prevent avoidable damage. Once you determine the source of the problem, you can even fix it yourself or contact one of our team to fix it for you.
Identifying a blocked shower drain
Following a shower if you notice the standing water drains slowly and it takes several minutes for it to clear, this is a sign that your shower drain is clogged.
Any unpleasant odors coming from the drain is another indication of a blockage as the buildup of debris has stuck to the inner wall of the pipe. Ignoring a blocked shower drain could result in water seeping through your shower joints and can be a cause of bathroom flooding.
If your shower has any issues in its caulking or grout, the standing water could work its way into your walls resulting in a more serious structural damage.
Common causes of shower drain blockages
Hair, dirt and soap scum can easily build up in your showers drain and cause blockages. Longer hair can be troublesome as when this combines with soap it sticks to your drains wall more easily. If left unattended, this obstruction will continue to build up eventually and can completely block the passage of water. If you are continually experiencing blockages in your shower drain and after many attempts to repair them fail, this may show a more serious issue with your main sewer line.
Our plumbing experts in Chantilly recommend these methods to clear a blocked shower drain.
There are many different methods you can use to clear your shower drain of accumulated soap scum and hair. It’s important to note that using these methods without knowing the extent of the blockage could cause more serious damage being caused.
While effective for clearing smaller are less serious blockages, you first need to be able to identify the extent of the problem. Open the top of your shower drain and remove any debris that you see. Taking a torch, shine it down the drain to see if you can identify any blockage. If you can see a blockage, then the following methods can be useful for clearing it. If no blockage is evident, then it’s advisable to contact our plumbing team in Chantilly as you may be in need of a more professional aid.
Try to unblock your shower drain naturally
Most of us have memories of small science experiments in school involving white vinegar and baking soda, and we can remember how volatile these were. Using the natural chemical reaction caused by mixing these two can help you naturally clear your blocked shower drain.
- Boil a kettle and pour in the contents down your clogged drain
- Mix a 1/2 cup of vinegar and 1/2 cup of baking soda and pour this down the drain.
- Let the mixture sit in the drain for 15 minutes and then flush it one more time with another kettle of boiling water
- If you want to make a more powerful mixture, you could try adding a cup of salt to a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar and pouring this down the drain. Once again letting it sit for 15 minutes and flushing it with another kettle of boiling water
Clearing a blocked shower drain using a hanger
Sometimes blockages can be removed instead of flushed out.
- Open a hanger to its full length create a small hook on one end and push it into the drain opening until you snag the clog.
- Remove the clogged by pulling the hanger upwards and continue to repeat this process until it removes no more materials.
- Pour a kettle of boiling water down the drain if the water is still backing up you could try unblocking it using the natural method listed above, or by using one or both of the next two methods
Unclogging a shower drain using a plunger
Plungers may be an old school plumbing tool, but they’re still highly effective at removing blockages from shower drains.
- Take some petroleum jelly and rub it on the rim of the plunger because this will create a better seal.
- Place the plunger directly over the drain opening.
- Fill the shower until the plunger’s lip rim is covered.
- Push the plunger up and down in a rapid but control manner for a few minutes this could create enough suction to push any clog through the drain.
- Once you’re finished pour boiling water down the drain.
Unclogging a shower drain using a plumbing snake
At this point if none of the methods listed above have helped unblock or unclog your shower drain you may want to consider contacting a professional plumber. If you want to try one more method, you could consider getting a plumbing snake. This device is effectively a portable auger that is inserted into showers drains and can be used to either snag or break up blockages that may be further down the drain pipe.
- Insert the plumber’s snake into the drainpipe and continue to push it downwards until it encounters the clog.
- Cranking its handle counterclockwise will help you grab the clog, continuing to crank it will remove the clog from the drain.
- If you believe there are more blockages further down, you can repeat this process until it clears the shower drain.
If none of these DIY methods listed above prove successful, we advise that you contact our Chantilly plumbing experts and we will be happy to assist. The easiest way to avoid difficult blockages is to perform regular maintenance.
If you’re suffering from persistent blockages this could indicate a major problem with your sewer line. Our team can use different technology including power jetting to clear any of these blockages. Remember, our team has decades of experience in drain cleaning and maintenance, as well as mainline sewer repairs and they’re all fully licensed and insured professionals.