How do plumbers manage to perfectly fix your clogged drains? Here are some tools the experts use to unclog drains in your home.
Nearly everyone, at one point or another, will experience a clogged drain. Clogged drains are often caused by soap, food, dirt, hair, or some other kind of material build-up. This build-up reduces the flow of water and can result in a moldy smell that emanates into the home.
Reactions to mold include nausea and headaches. Additionally, the contaminated water within the clogged drain can contribute to skin irritation. It can also cause problems for individuals that suffer from asthma or allergies.
Fortunately, most plumbers are equipped to unclog drains.
Keep reading to learn about the types of plumbing tools these professionals utilize to protect your home from the dangers of a clogged drain.
1. Pipe Inspection
Most plumbers upon entering the home will conduct a pipe inspection. Pipe inspections should be conducted at least once every two years. Pipe inspections tell the plumber how water is running in the home.
It may alert homeowners of leaks or a need for repairs.
In the case of drain clogs, a pipe inspection will let the plumber know what is causing the blockage.
2. Pipe Cameras
Leaks or improper installation are easy problems to see with an external view of the pipes. However, when unclogging drains it helps to get an internal view. That’s why plumbers will use pipe cameras.
These are video cameras that are connected to a cable.
A plumber will maneuver the cable throughout the drain system. This allows them to see the parts of the pipe that they couldn’t otherwise reach. Then, they can determine which tool is most equipped to fix the clog.
Plungers are frequently used to unclog toilets. However, they can also be used to remedy light clogs in sinks and showers. A plumber may first attempt to unclog a drain with a plunger.
If this doesn’t work, it may be indicative of a heavier clog and require a different tool.
4. Manual Drain Snake
A manual drain snake looks like a long cable with an end that resembles a corkscrew. Attached to the cable is a handle that is used to crank the cable through a drain. Plumbers will first place the end of the cable in the opening of the drain.
They will use the crank to push the cable through the drain. When they reach the clog, they will maneuver the cable until they break through the clog.
5. Motorized Drain Snake
A motorized drain snake operates on the same principles as the manual drain snake. However, these drain cleaning tools are often used on bigger pipes or more stubborn clogs.
Motorized drain snakes can be both wired and cordless.
The motor gives the plumber more power to push through pipe build-up. These snakes have automatic feeds that facilitate the movement of the cable. With a button, the plumber can easily push the cable through the pipe, and just as easily retract it after a pipe is unclogged.
6. Drain Auger
A tool that is similar to the drain snake is the drain auger. Drain snakes are primarily used to tackle clogged sinks and smaller drains. Drain augers are designed for larger pipes, like ones in the toilet or shower.
Like drain snakes, drain augers are available in manual or motorized designs.
For the toughest of clogs, a plumber may use a hydro jet.
This tool sends pressured water through pipes to break down drain build-up. This tool is often faster and more efficient than a typical drain snake. Hydro jets get rid of the clog, but they’re also effective for cleaning drains.
The strength of the water helps rid the pipe walls of residue. Therefore, this tool not only fixes a clogged drain, but it prevents the likelihood of future clogs or more serious pipe damage.
8. Hair Snake
Hair is one of the most common causes of drain blockages. The average person sheds 50 to 100 hairs each day. Most of this shedding takes place in the shower. Therefore, a majority of it ends up down the shower drain.
Now, a single strand of hair won’t do much. It’s when a multitude of strands become knotted together that create the problem. For more crowded homes, they may have a greater risk of frequent drain clogging.
Thankfully, there’s a plumber tool that specializes in hair removal.
These drains are often made of plastic and come in a variety of sizes.
9. Cable Cleaning
Cable cleaning works for small and large plumbing jobs. These machines utilize spinning blades at the end of a cable to cut through clogs. Additionally, the blades will help scrape out residue build-up on the pipes.
There are various models of cable cleaners, such as sectional as well as continuous or drum cable.
Sectional cable cleaners utilize multiple cables which can be up to 15 feet in length. These machines are often preferred because they are safer to use. The benefit of shorter cables is that they’re easier to replace due to kinks or breaks.
Sectional cables operate at a greater speed and are much lighter than continuous machines.
Continuous cable machines have just one cable, though it can range from 25 to 100 feet. However, the entire cable is stored within the machine, making it heavier and more difficult to transport. An advantage of the continuous machine is that it leaves behind less mess than a sectional cable.
10. Home Remedies to Unclog Drains
Despite the amount of drain cleaning tools plumbers have, some plumbers utilize tools that can be found within the home. A combination of baking soda and vinegar produces a bubbling reaction that can work to loosen a clog.
After using baking soda and vinegar, it’s a good idea to flush the drain with hot water. This helps remove the clog and remaining residue from the pipes.
Addressing Pipe Problems
Clogged drains can cause major structural problems to your home and can even contribute to physical illnesses. It may be tempting to tackle a clog on your own, but that may worsen the problem. As you can see, clogged drains require a wide array of tools, as well as professionals trained in using them.
If you suspect you have a clogged drain, request service or consultation from a professional plumbing service. Experts are trained to unclog drains. More importantly, professional plumbers can offer regular maintenance and advice for keeping your home safe from future plumbing problems.
For plumbing services in Omaha, Nebraska, call Eyman Plumbing Heating & Air at (402) 731-2727.