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Blocked Drains 101: How To Deal With Blockages

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Blocked drains are one of those unfortunate events in life that nobody likes dealing with but that will inevitably happen from time to time. The warning signs are almost always there, yet we choose to ignore them, waiting for the drain to become completely blocked, and becoming completely unusable. Ideally, you should try to catch the problem as early as possible but if you fail to take action and your drain becomes blocked, you have some options. 

Blocked drains in Melbourne can be a real nuisance for homeowners, especially when you don’t know what to do. Of course, you could always hire in a professional but there is something much more satisfying about fixing the problem yourself. What’s more, you will save yourself time and money when you can undo the damage all on your own. With just a few simple household items, you can try a range of methods to unblock your drain to solve your problem. 

Let’s take a look at just a few ways that you can deal with drain blockages at home to get your pipes flowing freely again. 


The Wire Hanger Method

Wire hangers are surprisingly versatile tools for the DIY enthusiast. If your drain is blocked, simply head for the wardrobe and grab a wire hanger. Untwist it and straighten it out as best as you possibly can before making a small hook on one end. To unblock the drain, carefully slide the hooked end into the drain and pull out anything that it grabs onto. Remember to be careful to pull anything you find out of the drain and avoid pushing it further in. 


Vinegar And Backing Soda Solution

Mixing equal parts vinegar and baking soda will create a fizzing mixture that you can put directly down the drain to help remove any blockages. The effervescent effect of the mixture will help to break up and debris that might be stuck in the pipes. Hair and grime can accumulate in your pipes but allowing this mixture to sit in your blocked drains for at least an hour will help to dislodge them. For more stubborn blockages, leave the mixture overnight before flushing it out with hot water.


Use Boiling Water 

Depending on what the cause of the blockage is, sometimes, simple treatment with boiling water can be highly effective. Simply boil up some water in a kettle or a pot on the stove and pour it slowly down the drain. Aim for three seconds pour, wait 3 more seconds and pour again. Repeat this process until the blockage is dislodged and the pipes are free again.


Try Caustic Soda

If you have not used caustic soda before, be very careful as contact with your skin can cause chemical burns. Be sure to wear rubber gloves and eye protection to avoid injury when you are handling caustic soda. Sometimes called sodium hydroxide, this substance can be found at most hardware stores and is very effective at unblocking stubborn blockages. Simply mix with cold water until the mixture becomes hot and starts to fizz. Pour the mixture down the drain and leave it to work for thirty minutes. After thirty minutes have passed, flush with boiling water and repeat the process again if necessary until the drain is free. 


Prevention Is Always Better Than Cure 

If your drains are blocked, any of the methods outlined above can be helpful in clearing the pipes. However, the best thing you can do is to avoid blockages from occurring in the first place. If you notice that water is draining slower than usual or that there is a strange odour coming from your drains, be sure to clean them. Cleaning your drains before they become blocked will help you to avoid having issues with blockages again in the future. 



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