When you run water in your sink or tub, does the water pool instead of draining as it should? If all you use your sink and tub for is to wash your hands and bathe, you may be asking why your drains have become so clogged. After all, water and soap are the only things going down the drain, so what could possibly be the issue?
Although you may not see anything wrong with your drains, many clogs are caused by factors you may have yet to consider. We’ll discuss some of the most common reasons drains get clogged and how to fix them. While you may be standing in ankle-deep water now, some quick fixes and adjustments can help your drain function once again.
Hair and Soap
The first culprit many people consider when their drains are clogged is an abundance of hair. This is true in many cases, especially if someone has long hair that can get tangled and bunched together in drains. Drain cleaner can break down this hair and help your drain work properly, or you could use a drain snake to dislodge the hair and pull it out of your drain. And if you want to take preventative measures against hair in your drain, a mesh drain cover can catch hair before it falls into the drain while still allowing water to pass through.
One thing that only a few people consider is how soap can also contribute to clogged drains. Although it may wash off your body, once it reaches your drain and pipes it can collect, harden, and restrict water flow. This issue can be more gradual than clogs from hair, but it can also be more difficult to identify. Drain cleaner is typically the best choice for clearing these clogs.
A Dirty Drain Stopper
If your sink or tub has a drain stopper to keep large objects out, but the drain is still clogging, the issue may be the drain stopper. Because all the water you use passes by the drain stopper, anything that would get caught in the pipes first has a chance to get caught on the plug. This includes soap, mildew, and other substances that can prevent water from flowing out of your sink or tub.
The easiest way to remove build-up from your drain stopper is to remove and clean it. Most drain stoppers are secured by a nut attached to the drain under the sink. Just remove this nut, pull the stopper out, and thoroughly clean the stopper with your choice of cleaner. Once you’ve resecured the drain stopper, run your water again to ensure the issue is resolved.
Your plumbing is often something that’s out of sight, out of mind, but the reason for your clogged drains may be more foundational than you realize. Older plumbing may be the reason for your clogged drain, as it loses its function with time. Rusted or deteriorated pipes won’t be able to direct water as well as before, so you may need to replace your pipes entirely for your sink or tub to drain correctly.
About the author
This article is provided by Jenn Walker who is a freelance writer, blogger, dog enthusiast, and avid beachgoer operating out of Southern New Jersey. She writes for Al Coronado Plumbing, a plumber in Tucson, AZ.