Think Twice Before Dumping that Drain Cleaner Down the Sink

DrainsClogged drains can happen at any time. It may happen during the holidays, when your house is packed full of people who make your plumbing system work harder.

You shouldn’t wait for the problem, particularly slowly draining water, to become bigger. You need to fix it right away, or you may deal with even more serious damage.

What are your options, then? You’re most likely thinking of dumping an entire bottle of drain cleaning chemicals down the sink or the toilet. Before you do that, understand the consequences of using chemicals for drain cleaning. Salt Lake City plumbers agree on one thing — chemicals aren’t your best choice.

Chemical solutions can damage pipes.

Chemical drain cleaners clear most minor clogs because these products use sulfuric acid or sodium hydroxide, which are corrosive agents.  However, many of these household products are so powerful that they can damage even metals, such as steel, iron, and copper pipes. Even PVC pipes are in harm’s way with these cleaners.

Caustic drain cleaners can burn your skin.

Because chemical cleaners can eat away at even the most durable metal-based pipes, they can seriously injure you. Even just a tiny drop of these solutions can already burn a hole in your clothes.

When mixed with other chemicals, these drain cleaners can generate hazardous gas.

Caustic drain cleaning solutions should be used alone and never in conjunction with other chemicals. Doing so can lead to a reaction that produces hazardous gas and even explosions.

Rather than resorting to chemical cleaners, experts advise the use of “passive” unblocking supplies, such as your trusty plunger. In case it doesn’t work, your most viable option is to call in an expert.

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Your goal may be to clean drain clogs, but your chosen method may cause harm if you’re not careful. Think about how the products you use can damage your drains and pipes, and harm family members.