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Drain Cleaning with Chemicals.

Sep 06, 2019

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 Experiencing a drain problem, whether it’s a slow running drain, foul-smelling or an overflowing blockage, it’s an annoying situation to have. A universal way to rectify a drain issue is to clear it of clogs, but that’s not always the way. In some cases, cleaning the drain with a chemical drain cleaner instead of looking for clogs to remove, maybe the answer to your problem. Whereas at times, clearing with a machine may be the right option. Here are the differences so you can make an educated choice.

Drain Cleaning With Chemicals:

Cleaning the drain with chemicals removes foul odours, grime stains and minor debris buildups. A drain cleaning formula will usually be a liquid acid or powder. Homemade drain cleaning formulas including vinegar and baking soda can generally remove a rotten odour and grease. Drain cleaners like these should kill off bacteria that live in drains.

 Several varieties of drain cleaners that are available for purchase in stores include:

Caustic drain cleaners –

 This is a common over the counter drain cleaner. Made up of lye and caustic potash to release heat and destroy organic matter, clearing obstructions.

Oxidizing drain cleaners –

Made up of bleach, peroxides and nitrates. The ingredients oxidize organic matter which causes it to lose electrons.

Acid drain cleaners –  

Containing powerful sulfuric and hydrochloric acid and not usually sold in stores and only available to plumbers. Generates heat to break down and clean blockages.

A warning worth mentioning that these formulas are harsh chemicals, and sometimes do more damage than good. The heat generated by the chemicals can soften and damage PVC drain pipes, and corrode older, galvanized drain pipes if not correctly used. Also dangerous to humans if ingested, and can cause burns to skin and eyes.

Drain Cleaning with machines:

 Cleaning drains with tools involves physically removing a blockage instead of softening or eroding it. Drain cleaning will prevent issues, like a shower overflowing around your feet and sewage backups through your plumbing fixtures.

There are many ways your drains become blocked. Food is usually the culprit in the kitchen, whereas hair and soap scum are common causes of bathroom drain blockages. Outside of your house, your home’s mainline can become blocked with tree roots growing into the drain, causing sewage buildup.

A standard method of clearing a drain blockage is using a cable snake machine. A snake is a long, metal flexible rod pushes or pulls a blockage out of the drain. Operating a snake is done by a professional. An amateur increases the chances of damaging the pipe.

Plumbers experienced in blocked drains will also use hydro jetting technology which can quickly identify and remove drain problems of any size.


 Dealing with any drain blockage, waiting becomes a more significant issue – call a professional. King Plumbing has 30 years of experience clearing blocked drains in Hobart Tasmania. We are experienced in sewer line camera inspection and hydro jetting so we can quickly identify and correct drain problems of any size.