What do you think about when you hear the phrase, “plumbing problems”? if you’re like many homeowners, you probably immediately think about drain clogs or slow drains. Almost every homeowner at some point has run into the problem of a clogged drain, and this is a problem that impacts homes a few times a year.
Often, the instinct here is to reach for store-bought, chemical drain cleaners. Unfortunately, these drain cleaning “solutions” are very caustic and can actually eat away at the inside of your pipes, leading to unexpected needs for pipe replacement. Professional drain cleaning is the answer here—our plumbers have the tools and methods to effectively remove clogs and prevent them from coming back.
But what if you could prevent drain clogs? The good news is, you can! Keep reading as we uncover a few of the most common drain clog types and how you can avoid them.
FOG (Fats, Oils, and Grease)
This is one of the biggest threats to kitchen sink drains. FOG is in liquid form when it’s heated up, and therefore it may seem logical to pour it down the drain when you’re done cooking. However, as it cools, FOG turns into a waxy and tough solid, and it adheres to the walls of the drainpipes. It won’t take long for the buildup to start causing clogs and slow down your drains.
So how can you avoid this? Instead of pouring FOG down the drain, try pouring into a disposable tin can instead. Allow it to cool and harden, and then put it in the trash.
This is a big problem for bathtub, shower, and bathroom sink drains. Hair may not seem like it will cause a lot of trouble, but it can get stuck in the p-trap—the curved section of the drainpipe underneath the drain. This traps more hair, soon becoming a stubborn buildup that creates a tough blockage.
Fortunately, you can purchase drain covers and drain strainers very affordably at any hardware store or even online.
This is an issue for not only any drain in your home, but any piece of plumbing in your living space. Soap scum not only presents a risk of clogs, but it can also create an acidic reaction to your pipe lining and can damage it.
You can use a drain cover to prevent this. But, it’s also worth noting that soap scum buildup happens more when you have hard water, which has trouble breaking down the minerals that create soap scum to begin with. Hard water creates a lot of problems for your pipes and quality of life—if you suspect this issue, please reach out and ask us about our water softener services.
Hard Water Minerals
Speaking of hard water, the minerals from hard water themselves can solidify and create trouble within your pipes, leading to a clog. These minerals include calcium, magnesium, or even iron. These are harmless to ingest but can have a negative impact on your plumbing system.