The most unpleasant feeling is standing in an ankle-deep pool of dirty, soapy water right after your shower, thanks to slow shower drains!
If you can relate to this frustration, chances are your shower drain has a clog. A clogged shower drain can be a small blockage or a significant problem with your main sewer line.
You can fix the clog immediately once you find that the former is the issue. That’s why we are here with four easy steps to help clear the drain and reduce the chances of future clogs.
How To Know If Your Shower Drain Is Clogged
The main signs of your shower drain clogging or developing a clog are draining slowly and standing water in the shower after you’ve turned off the faucet. Another significant sign is if you notice an unpleasant odour from your shower drain before or after using the shower.
A shower drain clog is usually caused by the accumulation of debris like dirt and hair stuck inside the walls of the drain pipes.
Usually, shower drains are manageable and do not pose a vital threat. However, if the drain clog is severe, it may result in your bathroom flooding or leaks from the standing water seeping through the shower joints.
If there are voids in the shower grout or caulking, the standing water may also seep into the walls, causing severe damage or promoting mould growth.
What Causes Drain Blockages?
Various things can affect the efficient functioning of your shower drain. A build-up of matters like soap scum, dirt and hair usually causes the less significant shower drain clogs. If you have longer hair, the chances of the strands clogging your shower drain are much higher.
Soap makes matters worse by allowing the hair to stick to the shower drain pipes much easier than usual.
If your shower drain clogs keep returning, it might indicate a severe blockage within your main plumbing system. Another prominent indication that the main pipes are blocked is if there is more than one clog in your home.
Steps To Fix A Slow Drain
Though shower drains can be cumbersome, their solutions and preventive measures are relatively straightforward. You can take several steps to ensure that your drain stays clear of any unwanted hair, dirt or soap scum build-up.
As great as these tips are for clearing smaller blockages within your shower drain and maintaining the drain regularly, they are not ideal for more serious blockages or clogs within the main plumbing system. Following these tips for severe clogs can result in long-term damage to your main sewer line pipes, so it is best to contact a professional plumber in such events.
With that said, let’s take a look at the steps that can help fix your slow shower drain problem:
1. Use Boiling Water
Pour boiling water is a foolproof way to clean up unwanted debris in your shower drain. This loosens the build-up of soap scum, hair and other matter and flushes the drain. Apart from solving the problem of existing clogs, doing this weekly can eliminate the possibility of a shower drain blockage.
2. Use A Plunger
A plunger can be effective in releasing hair blockages within the drain. To create better air suction and make the plunger a lot more effective.
Using a plunger regularly can help avoid the build-up or hair within your shower drains. However, removing hair caught in the shower drain after each use is advised to lessen the chance of a clog.
3. Use A Baking Soda And Vinegar Solution
Sometimes, the blockages can be much harder to remove with a plunger or boiling water. In such cases, using a solution of baking soda and vinegar can help dissolve stubborn clogs effectively.
Pour a generous amount of baking soda down the clogged drain. Give it a few minutes, after which you can take a cup of vinegar and pour it on the baking soda. Let the solution sit for a few hours, allowing it to dissolve any clogs within the drain entirely. Finally, rinse with boiling water to remove the remaining solution and gunk build-up.
4. Avoid Using A Chemical Drain Cleaner
Chemical drain cleaners are usually what people opt for initially whenever they spot a blockage in their drain pipe. Although they come across as quick and affordable solutions to fix clogged drains, they are far from being a sustainable alternative.
These drain cleaners use harsh caustic chemicals that damage the drain pipes and shower fittings and seriously threaten your health. If the drain clogs don’t dissolve after multiple attempts using the tips mentioned above, you should call a professional plumber immediately to resolve the issue.
Fixing Your Slow Shower Drain
If your shower drain repeatedly clogs even after trying these fixes, it can indicate a problem with the main sewer line. If left unattended for long periods, it can cause a severe threat to the functioning of your home’s plumbing system.
In such events, contact the professionals at Woolf Plumbing & Gas, who possess 25 years of expertise in plumbing. We offer emergency plumbing services for unannounced issues and use the latest technology to clear blockages within your home’s plumbing system.