Chemical Drain Cleaners: Their Secrets Revealed

Chemical Drain Cleaners: Their Secrets Revealed

Clogs are one of the most common plumbing problems homeowners face. It can cause slow draining, or even stop your drains from functioning altogether! When you want to eliminate clogs, it’s best to get professional help from a licensed plumber. While you may be tempted to reach a chemical drain cleaner you can buy at the store, we’ll explain why that’s a bad idea and how doing so can harm your drains!

Drain Cleaners Damage Your Pipes

Clogs can be caused by almost anything. Clogs can be caused by bad drain habits like sending fat and grease down your garbage disposal or by flushing dental floss down the toilet. It can also be caused by an aging plumbing infrastructure causing limescale or rust buildup.

Due to this, commercial drain cleaners have to be strong enough to dissolve any clog. This is why their caustic chemical reactions are so strong. Unfortunately, this has some unfortunate side effects for your home’s plumbing. The chemical reactions in these cleaning products are imprecise and attempt to burn away and dissolve everything in sight. For older metal pipes, this can cause full-on ruptures. Even newer PVC plastic pipes can have trouble handing drain cleaners and warp.

The alternative method to clear clogs is to physically remove them with a drain snake or hydro jetter. These methods are far more precise and won’t damage your plumbing for the longterm!

Drain Cleaners are Dangerous!

As we mentioned above, chemical drain cleaners utilize strong chemical reactions to try to clear clogs. These are much more serious than your typical soap or even bleach! Harsh chemical cleaning materials like these result in thousands of poisonings every year in the United States.

This is made worse by the fact that many of these products contain brightly colored packaging that entices children. While we don’t recommend these products, if you do decide to have some in your home, keep it in a safe and secure location far out of the reach of children.

We Don’t Yet Know the Scope of the Environmental Effects

The harsh materials in these products require special processes to render fully inert. The sewer system is not designed to use these processes to break down hazardous materials safely. Instead, the solution is to add as much water as possible to dilute the solution. What that means is that all of those harsh cleaners end up in our shared environment and water supply. We don’t know the potential damage to our water systems because drain cleaners are still a relatively new product.

The Alternatives

There are a lot of ways to avoid being in a situation where you might be tempted to use a chemical drain cleaner. We advocate for good habits when it comes to your garbage disposal and drainage. We recommend that you never put any of the following items down your garbage disposal.

  • Grease. Even if it’s liquid when you pour it down the drain, as it cools it can solidify and cause clogs.

  • Fibrous veggies and peels. These can get tangled up in the blades and cause damage to the motor. Additionally, when peels have been only partially cut, they can get caught and cause clogs.

  • Coffee grounds. When cut up in the garbage disposal, coffee grounds turn into a thick paste.

We want to help if you have any drainage problems. Our hydrojetting and drain snake services can help clear any clog!

Call Total Comfort Solutions, LLC at (509) 956-4764 or fill out an online contact form to schedule an appointment! We are here to help you navigate these uncertain times. The safety of our clients and technicians is our top priority, and we have implemented the CDC recommended protocols to ensure your health is protected.


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