blocked drain can be a real nuisance. Not only are they inconvenient, unhygienic, and foul odored, but they can cost you a ton in repairs, too. The age-old adage that prevention is better than cure also applies to your home plumbing system. Avoid throwing money down the drain (pun intended) by following these seven tips to keep them clear and unclogged.
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#1 – Use a drain strainer
Use a drain strainer
Some of the major culprits of blocked kitchen drains are the leftovers and other debris that gets thrown in the sink. Thankfully, there’s an easy fix for that. Get yourself a sink strainer from your local hardware store and pop it in your sink. It’s a good way to catch small food waste like rice, pasta, and coffee grounds. Whenever the drain fills, simply toss the contents to your trash bin or your compost pit.
This method works for other parts of the house, too. You can get a drain strainer for your shower area to prevent hair, scum, and other dirt from blocking your drain.
#2 – Throw oil or grease in the trash
Throwing oil or grease down the sink is a bad habit that many are guilty of. While it may seem like a harmless act, oil and grease can stick to the side of your pipes and solidify, eventually blocking the drain as it builds up. The proper way to dispose of kitchen grease is to let it cool and transfer it to a disposable container. Once your jar fills, throw it in the trash then.
Unlike other kitchen waste, oil doesn’t go well with your compost pile. It disrupts the airflow and moisture of your mulch and will eventually ruin your fertilizer. The smell of used oil and grease can also attract pests and vermins to your compost.
#3 – Watch what you flush
Watch what you flush
When it comes to the question of what can you flush in your toilet, always remember the 3P’s – pee, poo, and paper. No other material should be flushed down your toilet aside from waste and toilet paper. That includes feminine hygiene products, nappies, wet wipes, dental floss, cotton balls, or even condoms. If it’s not part of the 3P’s, on to the trash it goes. If your toilet keeps clogging despite you not throwing any trash in it, it’s best to call the professionals.
#4 – Use a lint trap
One part of the house that usually gets overlooked when it comes to maintaining plumbing is the laundry area. However, lint, hair, and small pieces of fabric can end up blocking your drainage, too. An easy solution to this problem is to use a lint trap for your washing machine hose.
#5 – Clean the drain regularly
No matter how careful you are, keeping your drain completely free of debris is an impossible task. Regularly cleaning it is still key to keeping it unclogged.
For kitchen drains, a quick rundown of hot water normally does the trick. For a deep clean, you can throw a handful of baking soda or vinegar down the drain, let it sit, and follow it up with hot water to loosen grease and fats stuck down your drain. The baking soda also absorbs bad odour and vinegar works as a great disinfectant.
If baking soda or vinegar doesn’t completely work, try a plunger. A plunger is a must-have tool for any homeowner. The suction from the plunger will help to agitate the clogged-up material and dislodge it. For clogs that are deeply stuck, use a drain snake to grab hold of the clog and mechanically pull it out. Early prevention is key to avoiding a service call to your plumber.
#6 – Install a garbage disposal unit
If you don’t have a garbage disposal unit installed yet, then we highly recommend you get one. A garbage disposal unit is a device installed under your kitchen sink that shreds food scraps before passing them on to your plumbing system. While we still don’t recommend that you throw food scraps on your kitchen sink, a garbage disposal unit should pulverize any of the scraps that accidentally goes down the drain.
#7 – Get your drains professionally maintained
Ways to Avoid a Blocked Drain
Just like how a routine check-up with your doctor costs less than getting admitted to the hospital, routine plumbing maintenance will cost you less than calling a plumber when a major problem arises. Getting your plumbing systems professionally maintained every 2-3 years is ideal.
Give us a call today at 0411169327 for all your plumbing needs in Canberra or get a fast free quote through our website.