3-Step Guide To Unclogging Your Sluggish Drain Using Eco-Friendly Ingredients

Posted on: 11 January 2016

After pulling out the stopper in your kitchen sink, you may notice that the water is draining slowly. If so, you may want to unstop the drain before it becomes fully clogged, which could lead to a larger mess. Instead of reaching for a commercial drain cleaner full of harsh chemicals, try the following three-step, eco-friendly solution to your clogged drain that uses boiling water, a plunger, baking soda and vinegar.

Step 1:  Use Boiling Water And A Plunger

The first step to unclogging your sluggish drain involves pouring boiling water down the drain. The intense heat of the water and steam breaks down fats and oils while softening the clog. A plunger is then used to dislodge it, preparing it for step two.

Boil two cups of water, and pour it into the drain. Then, wait five minutes to give the heat a chance to penetrate the clog. Use the plunger to plunge the drain four or five times in rapid succession.

If there is still hot water in the drain, do not remove the plunger completely from the opening too quickly, as this could cause the hot water to surge upward and splash all over you. Instead, pull it slightly off the ring of the drain, then tilt the handle towards you. This directs any splashing away from your body.

Wait until the boiling water has drained completely. Then, proceed to the second step.

Step 2:  Pour Baking Soda And Vinegar Down The Drain

After allowing the water to fully drain out of your sink, this next step involves making a homemade drain cleaner using baking soda, a base, and white distilled vinegar, an acid. The baking soda absorbs and neutralizes any existing acids in the drains, while the vinegar breaks down any oils and fats.

This combination also works because of the chemical reaction between the two that causes carbon dioxide gas to form. As the gas expands, the pressure in the drain pushes against the clog and helps break it loose.

Pour a cup of baking soda directly down the drain, and let it set for five minutes. This time allows the base to absorb into the clog and start its job of neutralizing any acids within it. Once the time has passed, quickly pour the vinegar down the drain, and replace the stopper.

Keep the stopper on for 15 minutes to give the ingredients time to react and produce the gas needed to dislodge the clog. Once the time is up, slowly remove the stopper. As discussed in step one, remove it slowly to keep from getting splashed. After the stopper has been safely removed, go on to the third step.

Step 3:  Plunge The Drain And Rinse

Now that the clog is loose, the final step involves plunging the drain to completely free the debris and rinsing it down the drain. To begin, run water from the tap down the drain for half a minute. Then, rapidly plunge the drain four or five times, carefully removing the plunger after the final stroke.

Boil four cups of water in a large pan. Then, quickly pour it down the drain. Run tap water down the drain for about a minute, checking to see if it is still sluggish. If so, plunge it one more time, then check it again. If you see improvement, but the drain is still slow, repeat the above steps one more time.

The above steps are meant for use on slow drains. If your sink is not draining at all and is completely clogged up, you may want to contact a plumber to see if they provide eco-friendly drain cleaning services and to discuss your options. If you do not have the contact information for a plumber near you, check out a site like http://calldoctorfixit.com.