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The Pros and Cons of Different Drain Cleaning Methods

drain-cleaningDrain cleaning is one of the best ways to make sure that your drain and sewer system stays in top condition. There are a wide variety of different ways to conduct drain cleaning, each suited for a different individual situation. You should always have your drain cleaning conducted by a professional, regardless of what method is used. Still, it helps to know a little bit about how these different methods work.

Drain Snaking

Drain snaking is one of the oldest, and most popular, drain cleaning methods. It involves using a long cord with an auger on the end of it. The cord is fed into the drain pipe until it meets a clog, at which point the auger is turned using a crank or drill attachment to clear the blockage. Drain snaking is a quick and easy way to clear most drain clogs, which is why it’s been a staple of the drain cleaning business for so long. You would be hard pressed to find a plumber that doesn’t have a drain snake in their van. While drain snaking is effective, though, it does have a couple of drawbacks.

Drain snaking is good for clearing out complete blockages, but it’s not great as a preventive measure. The auger can only clear a space the size of itself, which means that some waste may be left on the walls of the pipe after it has been snaked. If that happens, a new clog can form more easily in the future. Fortunately, there are other options available for those situations.

Hydro Jetting

Hydro jetting is a more recent addition to the market, but it’s already become quite popular. Rather than drilling through any blockages, the hydro jet uses a high-pressure stream of water to blast any built up waste out of the pipe. Hydro jetting is a great way to remove all waste from the drain pipe, not just the waste that has completely obstructed the pipe. This makes it ideal for preventing future clogs from forming, as well as removing clogs that have already formed.

The only real drawback to using a hydro jet is that there are some pipes that cannot handle the pressure. In cases like those, drain snaking is a great alternative.

Store Bought Drain Cleaners

We are including this option only to tell you why it’s a really bad idea. You should never, ever use store bought drain cleaners if you can afford it. While most of them are effective at removing clogs, they do so using a variety of corrosive materials that damage the pipes. Years of using these kinds of drain cleaners will weaken the drain pipes, making them spring leaks more easily and contributing to early replacement. There’s a reason why professional plumbers don’t use these kinds of chemicals to clean drains. Always make sure that you schedule professional drain cleaning services, instead of trying to clear the drain yourself.

Pipeworks Inc. provides a full range of drain cleaning services in Bloomington, IL. If you need to have your drains cleaned, contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our expert plumbers.  

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