Think Twice Before Using Liquid Drain Cleaners

If your bathroom sink doesn’t drain very well, you know it’s probably a hair clog or general “gunk”no-chemicals. In the kitchen, it could be grease build up. So you buy a bottle of drain cleaner at the market & expect a miracle. Well, maybe you better think twice before dumping that chemical down your drain and here’s why:

Most liquid drain cleaners contain harsh chemicals that include hydrochloric acid to eat away at the clog. They also generate a lot of heat that is potentially harmful to your pipes.

Too many times, the initial application of the drain cleaner won’t loosen the clog and then you will try again, compounding the danger to your pipes. Think about it; the chemical is working on the clog, and you add more chemical – not a good scenario! The pipe will develop a hot spot at the clog and damage the pipe. This is especially true for older pipes.

If you have plastic (PEX) pipe, it could melt or warp the pipe and an expensive re-pipe could be in your future.

Speaking of those chemicals, if they can damage metal pipes, think about what they can do to your skin with a splash or if it gets in your eyes; and what about your lungs if you breathe in the fumes? (Be sure to wear eye protection & gloves!)

If you want to try to clear the drain yourself, instead of the chemical, you can use a plunger. Make sure you have the right size of plunger for the drain opening and plunge properly without causing any injury to yourself. If you have a store bought snake, you might try that, but they usually will not dislodge larger clogs or go very far into the pipe.

Your safest & best bet is to call a reliable plumbing company to schedule a drain technician to come out to diagnose what’s clogging up the pipes and then clear it with his special equipment.

Firkus Plumbing is one of Central Oregon’s oldest family owned plumbing companies and is ready to help when you call. Remember us when you have a plumbing problem:               541-382-7710.


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