How to Clear a Blocked Drain


There are no two ways about it, blocked drains are no fun. At the least, they are a nuisance and stink up the house. At most, they can be expensive to repair.

Luckily, most of the time, they are relatively easy to deal with. Here are a few simple ways to clear a blocked drain.

Hot Water

More specifically, boiling water. In the kitchen, blockages are often caused by a build-up of grease or oil in the drain. It goes down liquid but congeals as it cools and begins to trap other bits of debris until a clog forms.

A simple way to clear the clog is to melt the grease. You can do this by pouring a pot of boiling water down the drain.

DIY Drain Cleaner

Remember those volcano science experiments you did as a kid? Put what you learned to work and use that making soda vinegar mix to clear out your drain.

Start by dumping a bit of baking soda into the drain, then chase it with a bit of vinegar. The resulting fizzing action will work at the clog and, hopefully, clear it away. This method is effective but can be slow so you might have to do it several times.

Drain Cleaner from the Store

Using drain cleaner from the store is generally faster than DIY cleaner, but it’s caustic. Try to avoid pouring this down the drain because of the environmental damage it can cause.

You should also take care when using it that you don’t get any on your skin or in your eyes. Beware of breathing the fumes as well.

Use a Plunger

A plunger is a simple tool that every household should have on hand. Simply place the device over the blocked drain and ensure it gets a good seal. Then, pull up and down sharply.

The suction effect this action creates is often enough to dislodge the blockage. Run water down the drain to help wash away the debris.

A Camera on a Snake

Having trouble understanding where the real issue lies? Call a licenced plumber! One of their best tools is a small CCTV camera on the end of a long, flexible cable, much like a drain snake.

This can be inserted into the pipe to find the source of the blockage. This is especially helpful in the case of tree roots or other blockages that have to be dealt with externally as it tells the plumber exactly where to dig.


For deep blockages that can be blasted away, plumbers often use a tool called a hydro-jet. This blasts strong bursts of water into the pipe to break up and clear away blockages.

Enjoy a Clear Drain Today!

That’s it! Hopefully, one of the DIY tips we offered will clean out your drain and you can go about your merry way. If not, a plumber will be able to get to the cause of your blocked drain and get it running clear once more.