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S.E. Tradesmen Plumbing and Gas
Certified Veteran Owned Plumbing Company


101: Clogged Drain

Clogs, Smells and drain solutions

Unclogging a drain can be a simple task if you have the right tools and techniques. Basic methods include using a plunger, pouring boiling water down the drain, or using a mixture of baking soda and vinegar. For more stubborn clogs, a drain snake or flexible cleaning tool may be necessary. It’s important to avoid using chemical drain cleaners, as they can damage your pipes and harm the environment. If these methods don’t work, call us at 850-SET-2023.


How you can unclog a shower drain:

    1. Remove any visible debris: Use a pair of gloves and remove any visible hair, soap scum, or other debris from the surface of the drain.

    2. Boiling water: Bring a pot of water to boil and carefully pour it down the drain. This can help to loosen and flush away any remaining debris.

    3. Plunger: Use a plunger to create a vacuum seal around the drain and plunge up and down several times. This can help to dislodge any stubborn clogs.

    4. Baking soda and vinegar: Mix a cup of baking soda with a cup of white vinegar and pour it down the drain. Wait for about 10 minutes before flushing the drain with hot water.

    5. Drain snake: Use a drain snake or a flexible plastic drain cleaning tool to remove any remaining clogs in the pipes.

If these methods don’t work, it may be time to call a professional plumber for help. It’s important to avoid using chemical drain cleaners as they can be harmful to your pipes and the environment.

Kitchen Sinks

A clogged kitchen sink drain can be a frustrating problem, but it can usually be resolved with a few simple steps. Here’s how to unclog your kitchen sink drain:
    1. Use a plunger: Place a plunger over the drain and plunge vigorously for several minutes. This can often dislodge the clog.
    2. Try a mixture of baking soda and vinegar: Mix 1/3 cup of baking soda with 1/3 cup of vinegar and pour it down the drain. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes, then flush the drain with hot water.
    3. Use a drain snake: Insert the drain snake into the drain and turn it clockwise while pushing it down the drain. Keep turning the snake until you feel resistance, then pull it back out.
    4. Clean the P-trap: Underneath your sink is a curved pipe called the P-trap. Place a bucket underneath the P-trap to catch any water, then unscrew the pipe and remove any debris. Reassemble the P-trap.
    5. If none of the above methods work, and only as a last resort, try using a commercial drain cleaner. Follow the instructions carefully and avoid using too much of the product.
By following these simple steps, you could unclog your kitchen sink drain and get back to using your sink. However, if the clog is particularly stubborn or you are uncomfortable performing these steps yourself, it may be best to call a professional plumber for assistance.


Toilets are a crucial fixture in modern plumbing systems that are used for the safe disposal of human waste. The flushing mechanism of a toilet uses gravity and water pressure to move waste through a trap and into a sewer or septic system. Toilets come in various sizes, shapes, and styles to accommodate different bathroom layouts and personal preferences. In recent years, there has been a growing trend toward water-saving toilets that use less water per flush, helping to conserve water resources and reduce water bills.

How to unclog your toilet

    1. Place a plunger over the drain in the bottom of the toilet bowl and plunge vigorously. This should create suction that can dislodge the clog.

    2. Add a few cups of hot water and a few drops of dish soap to the toilet bowl. Wait a few minutes and then plunge again.

    3. If the plunger doesn’t work, try using a toilet auger. Insert the auger into the toilet drain and turn it clockwise while pushing it down. Keep turning the auger until you feel resistance, then pull it back out.

Ways to avoid a clogged toilet

    1. Flushing items such as wipes, sanitary products, cotton balls, or dental floss down the toilet can cause clogs.

    2. Using too much toilet paper or thick, plush toilet paper can cause clogs.

    3. Low-flow toilets that are designed to conserve water may not have enough pressure to push waste through the pipes, leading to clogs.

    4. Poor plumbing installation can cause reoccurring issues. Bellies (areas of pipe that have settled lower than the downstream sections of pipe), improper fittings, and other bad practices can result in constant drainage issues. Only serious remodeling work can resolve this.

    5. Sometimes small objects such as toys or jewelry can accidentally fall into the toilet bowl and cause a clog.

To avoid toilet clogs, it’s important to only flush toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. Other items should be disposed of in the trash. Additionally, regular maintenance such as cleaning the toilet bowl and tank, checking the flush valve, and using a plunger to clear minor clogs can help prevent major blockages from occurring.

Chemical drain cleaners

Chemical drain cleaners typically contain strong, corrosive chemicals such as sodium hydroxide (lye) or sulfuric acid. When these chemicals come into contact with organic materials like hair, grease, and food particles that are causing a clog in your pipes, they create a chemical reaction that generates heat and releases gas. This reaction dissolves the blockage and allows water to flow through the drain.

However, the use of chemical drain cleaners can also have negative consequences. These products can damage pipes over time and cause them to deteriorate or even burst, leading to costly repairs. They can also harm the environment by releasing harmful chemicals into water systems. Additionally, chemical drain cleaners may not always work on tough clogs and can be dangerous if they come into contact with skin or eyes.

Overall, it’s best to avoid using chemical drain cleaners and instead rely on other methods such as a plunger, a drain snake, or professional plumbing services. These methods are generally safer and more effective in the long run.

When all else fails

If you’ve tried these tips and you still have an issue, you may want to call in the big guns. A licensed plumber has the equipment and experience to resolve all your drain problems.

S.E. Tradesmen is a professional plumbing company that offers high-quality and affordable plumbing solutions. Our experienced team uses the latest technology and techniques to diagnose and fix plumbing drain issues quickly and efficiently, ensuring that you get the best possible service. With our dedication to customer satisfaction, you can trust us to provide reliable and long-lasting solutions to your plumbing problems.