Alternatives to Chemical Drain Cleaners
Most residents in Lafayette, LA, have experienced a slow or clogged drain. Hair, dirt, and food can bind to soap on drainpipe walls, building up over time and slowing water flow. If your drain is slow or completely blocked, chemical drain products are good to use as a last resort, but other cleaning methods should be tried first.
Types of Chemical Cleaners
The three types of chemical drain cleaner products are:
Acid: muriatic and sulfuric acids
Caustic: lye and caustic potash
Oxidizing: bleach, nitrate and peroxides
These chemicals open drains by producing heat that breaks down the clog until it is flushed.
Side Effects of Chemical Drain Cleaning Products
The heat produced by chemical cleaners can warp pipes made of softer materials like plastic or older metal that has weakened over time. If chemicals are used on a completely clogged drain, they can sit on the pipes long enough to cause them to weaken or break.
If the clog contains fat, oil, or grease, the chemicals cause the material to move down the drain to another location, creating a blockage down the line. These clogs can still be cleared, but it may be necessary for you to call a professional service to remove them.
What To Try Before Using Chemicals
You can try removing the clog mechanically by using a plunger or drain snake. If those options don't open the drain, you can try an enzymatic drain cleaner. It contains live bacteria or enzymes that feed on the clog's organic materials, breaking them down. The beneficial bacteria will reproduce and populate your plumbing system.
If your drain clog has caused damage, a company specializing in water damage repair can help you with sewage cleaning or mold removal.
Next time you have drain problems, try removing the material with mechanical or organic methods before using chemicals. If you decide to use chemicals on a clogged drain, be sure to follow the instructions carefully.