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A clogged drain in a sink or shower does not usually prompt a phone call to a plumber. It is very tempting to remove the clog without assistance. Sometimes small clogs are removed easily, but there are several issues for homeowners in Sugar Land, TX, to be aware of.
Liquid drain cleaners are readily available, but they can damage a home's plumbing with frequent use. Drain cleaners contain mixtures of several caustic or acid-based chemicals intended to dissolve clogs, and these chemicals also corrode pipes. Older pipes, especially cast iron, are more susceptible to corrosion than new plumbing.
Drain cleaners are dangerous to people and pets in Sugar Land, TX, as well. Some chemical solutions cause chemical burns on bare skin, and fumes irritate the lungs and nasal passages. Wear protective gear, such as latex gloves, safety goggles, and breathing masks, to reduce risk of injury while handling drain cleaners.
A single slow drain in a bathtub, sink, or other fixture probably means a small clog is present near the drain. Slow draining in multiple drains throughout the home indicates a larger problem, such as a blockage in main sewer lines.
Despite the corrosive nature of liquid drain cleaners, they are not strong enough to dissolve or dislodge large clogs in main lines. The effectiveness of drain cleaners drops in proportion to the distance from a drain.
The worst case scenario is a clog solid enough to block liquid drain cleaner in the pipe. This leaves trapped corrosive chemicals in constant contact with the pipe's interior. Consult a professional for drain cleaning services in sewer mains, and schedule services as soon as possible if drain cleaner is trapped in a clogged pipe.
Hydro jetting is a frequent component of drain cleaning services. Professional plumbers use a video inspection tool to find clogs and insert a hose with multiple small nozzles into the clogged pipe. A machine produces high- pressure water streams to break up or dislodge clogs. Hydro jetting also cleans sewer lines and removes residue clinging to the pipe's interior walls. This improves water flow and reduces the risk of future clogs.
Biological Drain Cleaners
Biological drain cleaners contain genetically engineered bacteria designed to break down and consume organic substances. Almost all substances found in sewer lines are organic, including toilet paper and other paper products.
Biological drain cleaners are not corrosive or dangerous for humans or pets because they do not contain any chemicals.
Bacteria in biological cleaners grow and reproduce inside pipes. They consume materials forming the clog and spread out to consume organic residue on pipe walls. The microorganisms die when the supply of organic material is depleted, and your sewer lines are left clean and clear.
There are drawbacks to biological drain cleaners. Drains should be completely dry before adding the solution. The drain cleaner is added in increments over a three-day period to completely dissolve the clog. Three days can be an unacceptably long time to wait for a clear, usable drain.
Drain cleaning services may include biological drain cleaners too. Plumbers use industrial-quality cleaners with higher concentrations of bacteria than consumers are able to buy, so a three-day wait is very unlikely with professional help.
The increased amount of bacteria in industrial biological drain cleaners works much faster than consumer products. Bacteria multiply exponentially. Any increase in the original bacterial colony accelerates reproduction rates significantly.
Problematic Foods for Garbage Disposals
Garbage disposals are a common cause of clogged drains. Disposals and household drains cannot accommodate every type of food. It is easy to pour hot fat and oil into a drain, but problems occur deeper in the plumbing.
Fats and oils cool and form a semi-solid sticky mass that sticks to pipe walls. The sticky mass catches additional debris carried by flowing water. Oil and fat clogs can eventually block pipes completely or accumulate on interior pipe walls. Sometimes professional drain cleaning services are the only solution to oil and fat build-up.
Egg shells are delicate and easily broken, but small pieces of egg shell are surprisingly difficult to break down. The shells stick in drains and disposals and catch other food waste to form clogs. Coffee grounds are another common culprit of garbage disposal and drain issues.
Coffee grounds spread out and act as a coagulant that holds other foods together in large masses. Sometimes drain cleaning services from plumbing professionals are the only solution for coffee ground clogs. It might be necessary to take the garbage disposal apart to clean it as well.
Benefits of Annual Drain Cleaning Services
Annual drain cleaning services are frequently overlooked on the home maintenance checklist. This service is actually very beneficial. The cleaning process lets plumbers view and evaluate most of the home's plumbing system. Small problems may be noticed before they cause enough damage to require extensive repairs or disrupt the household.
Drain cleaning services remove accumulated layers of organic material clinging to interior pipe walls. The material restricts water flow as the open space in pipes steadily decreases over time. Removing the residue improves water flow immediately.
Drains are frequent sources of foul household odors. Regularly scheduled cleaning removes mold and bacteria that thrive in the damp, nutrient-rich environment in household drains. Certain insects also enjoy household drains enough to deposit eggs. The insects hatching from those eggs can easily crawl or fly into the home itself.
Scheduling routine drain cleaning services lowers the risk of clogged or blocked drains between visits too. Avoiding a clogged drain is a better option than fixing it later. No one wants to deal with sewage backflow, overflowing toilets, or damaged carpets and furniture after a room floods. Call the professionals at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing in Sugar Land, TX, to schedule drain cleaning services.