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Understanding Some Stubborn Drain Blockages

Clogged drains are a common household nuisance. However, understanding what causes them can help you prevent blockages and keep your plumbing in top condition. The following are some of the causes of clogged drains and how you can tackle them.


One of the greatest culprits for clogs in bathroom drains is hair. When combined with soap scum, it forms a sticky mess that clings to the sides of pipes and traps more debris over time. The best way to deal with hair blockages is to prevent them. Installing a drain guard can catch hair before it goes down the drain.

Grease and Oil

Pouring grease, oil or fat down the kitchen sink is a recipe for disaster. These substances may be liquid when they are hot; however, they solidify as they cool, and they stick to the pipes and will gradually form a blockage. Never pour these substances down the drain. Instead, pour them into a container to cool. Then, throw them in the trash.

Food Scraps

Even with a garbage disposal, certain food scraps should never go down your kitchen sink drain. Items such as coffee grounds, eggshells and fibrous vegetables can cause trouble in your pipes. These materials do not break down easily and will accumulate, resulting in clogs. A simple solution is to compost these items or dispose of them in the trash.

Soap Scum

You might not think soap can cause clogs; however, the truth is traditional bar soaps contain fats that can combine with minerals in water to form soap scum. Over time, this scum accumulates inside the pipes, and it causes them to narrow and slow down drainage. Switching to liquid soap can help reduce soap scum buildup.

Small Objects

Sometimes, small objects accidentally fall into the drain and get stuck, and when they do, this causes a blockage. This is especially common in households with children. Regularly checking and clearing your drains can help prevent these items from causing issues. If something does get stuck, a plunger or a plumber’s snake might be able to dislodge it.

Flushable Wipes

Despite what the packaging says, “flushable” wipes are a leading cause of clogs in household plumbing. Unlike toilet paper, these wipes do not break down quickly, and they result in blockages in pipes and sewer lines. The solution is simple. Dispose of these wipes in the trash and not the toilet.

Dealing With Clogs

If you’re faced with a clog, a plunger or a plumber’s snake can often solve the problem. For more stubborn blockages, a mixture of vinegar and baking soda can help break down the clog. Never resort to harsh chemicals to dissolve clogs because they can damage and corrode your pipes. However, if you have tried everything and the blockage persists, it might be time to call in a professional plumber.

Understanding the common causes behind clogged drains can help you take preventative measures to keep your plumbing in top shape. If you are currently contending with a clog and need drain cleaning services, contact A Better Plumber straight away to restore the plumbing in your Waldorf, MD home.

Contact our licensed professionals today to schedule a service appointment. (301) 278-8786

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