Clogged drains are one of the most common residential plumbing issues. Unfortunately, many homeowners attempt to remove these obstructions through ineffective do-it-yourself methods, such as chemical drain cleaners. These tactics rarely resolve the issue and may even damage the pipes.
Some homeowners try to resolve clogs on their own because they assume that a professional cleaning will be disruptive to their daily life. In this blog, we walk you through the process of professional drain cleaning so you know what to expect from this essential service.
When you schedule a drain cleaning, take note of all the plumbing changes you have noticed. Even symptoms that may seem unrelated to clogs, like different pipe noises, can provide your plumber with important information about the source of the problem.
Your plumber may ask what you've observed and visually inspect the affected drains.
In most cases, your plumber will offer you an estimate before he or she begins the cleaning process. This estimate will include an itemized list of the services needs and the individual cost of each. Your plumber may point out services that could change if the problem turns out to be more complicated than originally anticipated.
Once you understand which services your plumber will be performing, he or she will take a closer look at the affected drains. If the obstruction is closer to the opening of the pipe, your plumber may perform a closer visual inspection.
If your pipes have a deep or developed clog, your plumber may need to use a video tool to determine the size and contents of the clog. This information ensures that your plumber uses the best possible removal method.
After your plumber determines what he or she is working with, the actual cleaning process begins. Simple clogs may be removed by hand or using a drain snake. Drain snakes are extendable cables that can access obstructions that are out of sight and reach. Depending on the composition of the clog, your plumber may hook the clog and pull it out or break the clog apart and wash it down the drain.
If the clog is particularly stubborn, your plumber may use a hydro jet tool instead. As the name suggests, these tools use pressurized water to remove clogs and buildup. Your plumber may recommend hydro jetting if you have a lot of mineral buildup in the pipes, even if not all the buildup is actively causing an obstruction.
After the initial cleaning, your plumber will use the video tool again to check that the clog is completely resolved. If there is still visible buildup, your plumber will repeat the cleaning process until the obstruction is gone.
Many clogs are preventable with the right pipe maintenance. If the clog was created by items washing down the drain, your plumber may recommend steps to prevent similar issues in the future. For example, many kitchen clogs consist of cooking fats that solidify in the pipes as they cool down. Dumping these byproducts into a plastic bag and throwing them in the trash can reduce the risk of pipe obstructions.
Your plumber may also list any repairs that are needed to make your plumbing system more efficient. In some cases, your plumber may provide you with an enzyme cleaning solution to use on your drains when necessary. This type of cleaner helps break apart mineral buildup and other obstructions to lengthen the time between official cleanings.
Ready to restore your pipes to full functionality? Schedule a professional drain cleaning from the plumbing experts at Coastal Plumbing, Inc.