How to Prevent Clogged Drains

vinegar and lemonOne of the most common and most frustrating plumbing issues is the dreaded clogged drain. Over time, soap scum, hair, cooking grease, and other substances will build up inside your drains and lead to clogs or backup. Not only will a clog render a sink temporarily unusable, but it can be accompanied by foul smells or other inconveniences. When this happens, you’ll need the help of a plumber who can decide on the best method for drain cleaning, which may be traditional snake drain cleaning or hydro jetting.

Fortunately, there are ways to avoid a need for frequent drain cleaning services. If you follow some of our maintenance tips, avoid putting certain substances down your drains, and pay attention to early signs of a problem, you can avoid major drain cleaning emergencies. Continue reading to learn how you can prevent clogged drains in your home.

DIY Drain Cleaning Maintenance

Do you want to ensure that your drains remain as effective as possible for as long as possible? Using items you probably have around your kitchen already, you can avoid a need for drain cleaning as often. Follow these DIY maintenance methods to prevent clogs and improve the cleanliness of your drains:

  • The Baking Soda Method— Toss a handful of baking soda down your drain and then pour hot water after it. The baking soda will not only clean the inside of your drain, but it will absorb any foul odors that may be present.
  • The Vinegar Method— First, pour one cup of vinegar into your drain and leave it alone for 30 minutes. Then, pour hot water down the drain to clear the vinegar. Together, the hot water and vinegar will help eliminate buildup within your drain.
  • Hot Water Does Wonders— Each time you use a sink, run hot water through the drain to help avoid buildups.
  • Use Screens or Drain-Grates— Cover the drain in your bathroom sink or shower with a screen or grate to minimize the amount of hair or soap scum allowed down the drain.
  • Vinegar + Ice + Lemon— This method is best for cleaning a drain with a garbage disposal. Freeze vinegar with water in an ice cube tray (about half-and-half) and then toss a few cubes with a couple of lemon slices down your drain. Turn the garbage disposal on for about 30 seconds and your drain will be cleaner and smell great!


What NOT to Put Down Your Drains

Drains are great for getting rid of waste products and dirty water in your home or business. However, they are only capable of clearing waste to a certain extent. To keep your drains as effective as possible, the following substances should never be sent down a drain:

  • Toxic chemicals
  • Grease, oils, and fats
  • Medications
  • Paper towels, cotton balls, feminine hygiene products
  • Flour
  • Eggshells
  • Stringy foods (like celery, lettuce, or onion peels)
  • Fruit rinds and peels


Whether you’ve accidentally put some of these substances down your drain or you have been cautious about your habits, your drains will probably clog at one point or another. After years of use, even drain-approved substances like soap scum and toilet paper can build up and cause your drain to clog. When your drains are clogged, you’ll need a speedy and thorough drain cleaning service. Learn more about the various drain cleaning services offered by Pete Fer & Son below.


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