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How to Unclog a Drain

how to unclog a drain - Saint Paul

How to Unclog a Drain

A clogged drain disrupts your day in more ways than one. Trying to unclog your drain can be extremely frustrating, especially if you’ve tried just about everything. There are a few other things you can try before contacting us for Twin Cities plumbing services. Below, McQuillan Bros shares a few tips on how to unclog a drain in your home

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5 Methods for Unclogging a Drain

how to unclog a drain - Saint Paul

What Equipment Do I Require to Unclog My Drain?

Unclogging your drain can require a few of the following items. If you’re not well equipped to unclog your drain, you may want to consider hiring a local plumber. Here’s what you need:

  • Rubber gloves 
  • Wire coat hanger
  • Flange Plunger
  • Handheld snake
  • Boiling water

What Causes a Clogged Drain?

Clogs can form when debris buildup, which prevents liquid from going to the sewer. Most commonly, a clogged bathroom sink is caused by the accumulation of soap and hair over time. Your kitchen sink will likely clog because of built-up food or oil.

Whatever the source, it’s critical to get it out of the way as soon as possible so you can go back to your day. While major clogs may necessitate the services of a local plumber, you can try a few tactics to help remove your blockage before contacting the professionals.

Unclogging a Shower Drain with Wired Coat Hanger & Hot Water

It’s worth your time to look into the pipe before renting a plumber’s snake. Tangled hair in your shower drain might only take a pair of rubber gloves, boiling hot water, and a wire hanger.

How? Hot water can sometimes be sufficient to dislodge a clog. Binding substances such as dirt, grease, and soap degrade when heat is applied. Boiling water can be used to unclog a drain. Note: You may need to repeat this numerous times until the clog is freed, but don’t give up! 

What you’ll need to accomplish is as follows:

  • Remove the drain guard and any hair you see to get access. Be cautious not to aggravate the obstruction.
  • Then, you can pour the boiling water down the drain to loosen and clear the remaining material. 
  • Use the wire coat hanger to remove any clumps of hair. 

Bathroom and Kitchen Drain Plungers

A plunger can clear the majority of clogs before you open a bottle of commercial drain cleaner or make an appointment with a local drain cleaner. Not all plungers are compatible with all drains.

The cup plunger is a well-known plunger that has a suction cup attached to a wooden handle. In contrast, a flange plunger has a piece of rubber protruding from the cup. This extra rubber is perfect for toilets and shop floor drains, whereas a cup plunger is most suited for drains with flat surfaces, such as kitchen sinks or showers.

When plunged, the correct plunger forms a solid seal around the drain, enhancing suction power. Continuous plunging in 30-second intervals should help dislodge the clog and clean the drain. It’s also a great arm workout!

Unclog a Drain With Baking Soda and Vinegar

Your plunger may want some assistance from time to time. Pouring drain cleaner onto the clog can release tightly matted hair and filth.

Popular liquid and foam drain cleaners use harsh chemicals to liquefy the material obstructing the drain, allowing the clog to be removed. Our friends at Maid for Muddy Paws, who offer cleaning service in Magnolia, highly recommend baking soda and vinegar. 

When vinegar and baking soda are together, they react to form foam. The chemical reaction created by the vinegar and soda will unclog the drain. After that, flushing the drain with boiling water will aid in the removal of the clog.

Here’s how to manufacture your own environmentally friendly drain cleaner:

  • One cup of baking soda needs to be poured down the drain.
  • One cup of vinegar poured down the drain.
  • Once the reaction has subsided, pour a gallon of hot water down the drain.

How to Use a Hand-Operated Drain Snake to Unclog a Drain

Deep clogs that are beyond the reach of a wire hanger may necessitate the use of a handheld snake tool.

Hand-operated snakes are smaller versions of the tools used by professional plumbers and can be purchased for between $10 and $30 at your local hardware shop. A drain snake is a long steel wire with a wire hook on the end that can bend around curved pipes. Spin the snake around and pull out all the gunk in your drain. 

Contact McQuillan Bros

Now that you know how to unclog a drain, you hit the floor running! If you’re still having trouble unclogging your drain, please don’t hesitate to contact McQuillan Bros for our drain clearing services. Our plumbers are happy to help. We provide 24/7 emergency plumbing in the Twin Cities area and beyond! 


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Complete the form below and one of our team members will give you a call to help get you scheduled. If you have an urgent need please call us at
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