When it comes to home maintenance, most people don’t immediately think of maintaining their kitchen and bathroom drains. However, they are just as important as washing your windows or cleaning your gutters. Drains can seem to clog suddenly, cause major problems such as leaks and produce subsequent water damage to cabinetry and floors. The cost to repair these kinds of problems can add up quickly. In order to avoid such problems in your home, here at Schlueter Plumbing, we’re sharing with you three drain maintenance tips that can help your drains stay clear and functioning properly.
1. Check for Hair Masses and Biofilm
A very easy way to make sure your bathroom tub and sink drains stay clog free is to monthly check the drain screen or stopper for hair and that slimy brown buildup called biofilm. A mass of hair that collects and sticks to the stopper or drain screen can usually be removed by pulling or cutting it off. When these hair masses are left on the stopper or drain screen for an extended time, they usually break loose and lodge in the drain. Two or three hair masses would be enough to clog your drain. Biofilm can be removed using hot water, a small scrub brush, and bleach or a bathroom cleaning product. Biofilm is important to remove because it contains oil and bacteria. Over time, chunks of biofilm also can break loose and lodge in your drain to produce a clog. Besides keeping your drain clear, removing biofilm keeps drain flies from breeding.
2. Prevent Grease Clogs
In the kitchen, you have a little different kind of potential problem than in your bathrooms. Because food and grease often go down the drain in the kitchen, you have more of a likelihood of a drain clog forming quickly. Garbage disposals and drain screens in kitchen sinks don’t always do their job of removing food from dishwater. That’s why it’s important to maintain your kitchen drains even more often than your bathroom drains. One easy maintenance tip uses liquid dishwashing detergent and boiling water. Pour a tablespoon or more of detergent into the drain, followed by a quart or more of boiling water. The detergent and boiling water will melt and carry away any grease collecting in the drain. Doing the same procedure in your bathroom drains will ensure they stay clear, too.
3. Maintain Drains with Enzymes
Available in most hardware and grocery stores, enzyme-based drain openers – also known as “good bacteria” – can be used regularly to prevent drain clogs. The enzymes act to wipe out the bad bacteria that collects in the grease, food, and hair that gets trapped in your drains. Without the bad bacteria, the clogging matter loosens and washes away, keeping your drains free and clear. The best times to use enzyme-based drain openers are at night before going to bed, or before leaving your home for an extended period of time. The more time the enzymes have to work in your drains – without being washed away by regular water use – the more bacteria will be wiped out.
Whether you have a major or minor plumbing repair, our team of experienced, professional, and knowledgeable plumbers offers full-service plumbing repair and sewer expertise for residential and business properties. We will provide you with a cost-effective solution for many of the common, everyday problems too, such as dripping faucets, running toilets, leaking pipes, and sump pump failure. What can we do for you? Make an appointment today online or call us today at 513-771-7588 for all your plumbing needs.