If you live in Adelaide and have a blocked drain then you are not alone, with blocked drains being an extremely common problem that people in Adelaide come across frequently when they are not expecting it. Blocked drains can cause extra problems such as water leaks from drains which can damage the floor or coverings, or burst pipes.
There are several things you can try before resorting to calling your local Adelaide Plumber. They are:
Hot Boiled Water
You can try pouring hot water into the drain to loosen the fat and grease which usually gets caught up with hair or some other binding medium. The hot water may be enough to dissolve the fat without going to further trouble; however this should only be done on steel pipes and ceramic pipes due to the tendency for plastic PVC pipes to weaken the joints.
Natural Recipe Cleaner
Try to use a natural cleaning agent from baking soda and vinegar. First put the baking soda down the drain and then follow with the vinegar. Block the drain with something to stop the bubbles from the resulting reaction from coming out of the drain. The reaction between the two ingredients gives off oxygen which cleans the pipes but you might have to do it a couple of times before the mixture breaks through the blockage.
Caustic Soda Cleaner
You can try caustic soda or other chemical cleaners based on this ingredient which is able to dissolve things like hair and other waste but not tree roost or other causes of blockage. The caustic cleaners are toxic, so protect your skin and eyes with gloves and goggles. Flush the pipes after you use this chemical to get rid of any toxic residue.
Drain cleaner is usually made of caustic soda. You can buy plain caustic soda and it usually does the job as good as any other drain cleaner with a fancy label.If you drains are blocked what you do is when the sink or drain is relatively dry pour some caustic soda down the drain. Watch out you don;t get any on yourself. Use gloves and safety glasses for eye protection,
Once you have poured a few table spoons down inside of your blocked drains, wait for half an hour. Then pour a cup or two of water down the drain and wash all the crystals surrounding the drain down it. Wait for a few hours and then the next time you use the shower of sink where the blockage has occurred the water should flow down it more freely.
If the water does not flow down the drain more freely then you have a more serious blockage and it’s probably best to call a plumber.
If you use a plunger which is cheap to buy from any hardware store, make sure you cover any other holes which could waster the pressure build up when you begin plunging and waste you effort. The pressure created by the plunger can force the blockage along the pipe and loosen it for the water to flow again. This is useful for some blockages but does not work that well on fat or limestone build ups.
It’s not what you are thinking….A plumbers snake is a flexible hose like cable which spins and has cutting blades on the end to cut through tree roots or similar blockage materials. You can buy plumbers snakes from the hardware stores such as Bunnings Hardware or just get a plumber in to do the job. This method can harm your pipes sometimes though.
Pressurized water -Jet
Known as a Hydro-jet, this tool forces water under high pressure down your pipes. The resulting pressure forces the blockage down the pipes and breaks it up so that water can flow freely once again. This is a method used by a plumber and best left to them to do a proper job. However you can try to force a hose down there and turn the water up full bore to do a similar job. It might work and it might not.
Digging up the Pipes
If all fails then you might need your pipes dug up and your plumber can fix the pipes or replace them. This job is not straight forward so better to leave it to your Adelaide plumber who can locate the blockage and excavate, replace and fill in with earth again.
My favorite method is the caustic soda, but be careful and use personal protective equipment such as safety glasses and gloves.
Hope this helps you with your blocked drains. Happy plumbing.