How to Unclog a Shower Drain
Not all shower clogs are the same, so you may not be able to fix them on your own, but here are some tips to try to unclog a shower drain.
You go to take a shower and suddenly you realize that you are taking more of a bath than a shower due to the water pooling up around your ankles; you have found yourself with a clogged shower drain. Clogged shower drains are typically caused by a backup of hair and soap scum that has been accumulating over time. The soap fuses with the hair clumps to create impermeable clogs and backed up water in your Buffalo, NY shower. As with most at home plumbing problems, you should avoid at home drain cleaner, if you can, and look for other solutions to unclog a shower drain.
At Home Things to Try to Unclog a Shower Drain
Not all shower clogs are the same, so you may not be able to fix them on your own and it may be best to contact a local plumber to unclog your Buffalo, NY shower drain. If you are in a hurry and want to try some low risk methods for unclogging your shower, we have got you covered with some at home methods to try to unclog a shower drain.
Boiling Water: Using boiling water to unclog a shower drain is maybe the easiest thing to try. The hot water should help to break up some of the buildup in the pipes and in turn clear the clog. Boiling water should only be used if you have metal pipes; don’t use boiling water if you have PVC pipes, as it could loosen the joints and the sealer.
– Start by boiling water in a pan or teapot.
– Slowly pour the boiling water down the drain, giving it the chance to work its way through the plumbing.
Baking Soda and Vinegar: This method for trying to unclog a shower drain takes you back to middle school science class and uses the chemical reaction from baking soda mixed with vinegar to help remove the clog. Again, this should only be tried if you have metal pipes to avoid additional damage to PVC plumbing.
– Pour boiling water down the clogged drain.
– Add 1 cup baking soda followed by 1 cup vinegar down the drain (this should start to fizz).
– Let the mixture sit in your drain at least 15 minutes and up to an hour if you can.
– Run warm water down the drain to push the mixture through the pipes.
Clothing Hanger: Clothing hangers are great alternatives to drain snakes, if the clog is not very deep. You should remove your drain cover and shine a flashlight down the drain to see if you can see the clog. If the clog looks to be near the surface, this method to unclog your shower drain may be right for you. You will need a metal hanger for this option.
– Use a screwdriver to unscrew and remove the shower drain cover.
– Straighten out the wire coat hanger and keep a tiny hook on one end.
– Feed the hanger down the drain to try to grab the clumps of hair, soap scum, and/or other items blocking the drain.
– Run hot water down the drain and replace the drain cover.
Plunger: A toilet plunger is a good plumbing tool to use for a clogged shower drain; it’s meant to force clogs and blockages of all kinds downward and out of drains. Most people already have a plunger in their bathroom, making this a good solution to use to try to unclog a shower drain.
– Place the plunger cup over the drain opening.
– Fill the shower basin or tub with enough water to cover the plunger’s lipped rim.
– Swiftly push the plunger up and down for a few minutes to create suction and push the clog through the drain.
– Rinse the drain with hot water.
Not all shower drain clogs can be fixed with the at home methods described above. If you have a tough clog or larger plumbing issues, you should always contact an expert. Reimer Home Services is here to help.