22 Oct. 19

How To Unclog A Shower Drain

Shower drain clogs are most often a combination of hair and debris that has become lodged in the soap residue that has adhered to the inside of the drain pipe. Over time, the oils in soap, body wash, and shampoo accumulate inside the pipes and create a sticky mess. The result is a perfect storm when hair and other particles begin to stick inside the pipe rather than being washed away. But the good news is that there are several safe ways to remove these shower drain clogs that are inexpensive and relatively simple.

Boiling Water

Because most clogs contain a large amount of oil, hot water can turn the almost solid oil into a liquid that will wash away. Boil a pot of water on the stove and then carefully pour the boiling water down the drain. The trick is to pour only into the pipe so that you do not damage your shower floor or any fixtures. Also, pour slowly enough to avoid overflowing the drain and backing up super-hot water on the shower floor.

Add A Little Plunging

If the boiling water does not completely remove the clog, the force of a plunger could finish the job for you. Adding some petroleum jelly to the outer edge of the plunger will help to increase the seal and the pressure that is applied to the clog. However, be very careful when plunging. Vigorous plunging creates the most pressure to remove the clog but can also cause the hot water to splash and could create a burn if you are not careful.

A Safe Chemical Shower Drain Cleaner

Store-bought chemical drain cleaners can be harsh and cause damage to your drain pipes. Also, they often create toxic fumes, which can be hazardous to your health. But there is a very safe chemical reaction that will remove a stubborn shower drain clog without any potential damage to the pipes or health hazard to you and your loved ones.

Pour a cup of baking soda down the drain and then add 2 cups of vinegar. You will instantly see the bubbling action of this chemical reaction. The bubbling action and the vinegar will begin to eat away at the clog. Wait about 30-60 minutes, then pour a pan of hot water down the drain to wash away any remnants of the clog.

Time To Get Your Hands Dirty?

When the first three options don’t seem to be working, it is time to remove the clog in another manner. For this process, a pair of sturdy rubber gloves is recommended. First, you will need to remove the shower drain cover. This step could require removing a screw from the center of the cover or prying it off with a flathead screwdriver.

Once the cover is removed, you can look down into the drain with a flashlight. Hopefully, you can see the offending clog and even reach it with a flathead screwdriver to pull it from the drain pipe. If the clog is further down in the drainpipe, an old wire hanger could be just the tool that you need. Untwist the hanger and fashion a long wire with a hook at the end. Fish the hook end into the pipe to snare the clog and pull it out of the drain.

If you can’t reach the clog with a wire hanger, then using a plumbing snake should be your next considered action. These can be purchased or rented at a big box store. You insert the snake into the drain until it reaches the clog. Next, turn the handle on the snake to remove it and the clog from the pipe. Run water down the drain for several minutes to be assured that the clog is completely removed.

A Trusted Professional

If you are unable to remove a very tricky clog from your shower drain, or you do not have the time to tools needed for the job, then a call to (214) 388-8838 is your best course of action. The professional plumbers at Flow Plumbing offer 24/7 service to assist you with all of your plumbing needs. And when you use Flow Plumbing, you know that our work is guaranteed. We arrive ready to fix your issue quickly and cost-effectively.