How Can I Prevent Clogged Drains?

Clogged drains can slow down your day, make showering and washing dishes difficult and can even be embarrassing when you have company. Preventing clogged drains is important for any homeowner who wants to protect their investment and their property.

What causes clogged drains?

Clogged drains can be caused by a variety of different problems. Before you can fix your home’s clogged drains, you must first understand what causes drains to become clogged. Some of the worst clogged drains are caused by:

  • Fats and oils: Fats and oils congeal in the drains, causing backups and clogged sewer lines. In extreme cases, fats and oils can come together in huge clogs called fatbergs.
  • Hair and food: Hair goes down the shower and bathtub drains, while food bits naturally fill the kitchen sink drains.
  • DIsposable wipes: Disposable wipes can do incredible damage to sewers and home plumbing lines.
  • Tree roots: Tree roots can cause a clogged sewer line, leading to sewer back ups in the house.

What can be done to prevent clogs?

Fortunately, clogs are easy to prevent. With a few lifestyle changes, you can keep your home’s drains free of clogs and flowing freely.

  • Never, ever flush anything down the toilet that isn’t human waste, water or toilet paper. Products like diapers, kitty litter, disposable wipes and tampons should not be flushed down your toilet, even if they say “flushable” right on the label.
  • Use a strainer for your drains. Keep a good strainer in your kitchen sink and over your shower or bathtub drains to catch food and hair that might get washed into the pipes.
  • Never flush fats and oils down the drain. Let cooking oil cool, then drain it into a bag and throw it in the trash. Or, save your fats and oils for re-use later.
  • Clean your drains with natural products. Flush vinegar down your drains on a regular basis to clear out the debris and keep the drains flowing smoothly.
  • Plant trees wisely. Find out the expected length of a tree’s roots before planting one on your property, then plant the tree far away from sewer lines. Watering your trees during times of drought can prevent roots from growing into sewer lines in search of moisture. Finally, avoid planting “thirsty trees” like poplars and willows on your property, as these trees are known to have aggressive, invasive root systems.
  • Pour vinegar down the drains. Vinegar is mildly acidic and can help clear drain lines. Pour vinegar down your drains on a regular basis to keep the pipes clear and clean.
  • Have a talk with your children about smart use of the plumbing. Young children don’t really understand the damage they can do when they flush non-flushable items down the toilet. Having a discussion with your children about best practices with the sinks, drains and toilets can help prevent clogs. If one of your kids is responsible for washing the dishes, discuss smart use of the garbage disposal and how important it is to use the sink strainer.

Contact Terry’s Plumbing for Clogged Drains

Following the tips above should help you protect your plumbing and keep water flowing through the drain pipes. However, if your drains are slow, then Terry’s Plumbing can help. We use state of the art equipment to clear your pipes and help you maintain your plumbing. To make an appointment, contact us today at 412-364-9114.