Unblocking the Flow: Solving the Mystery of the Blocked Sewer Pipe

Signs of a blocked sewer pipe typically arise out of nowhere. You might notice slow drainage, gurgling sounds from drains or toilets, foul smells, or worse still, water pooling around the sewer point. Not only can a blocked sewer cause wastewater to back up into your home posing health hazards and property damage risks, it can also result in expensive repairs if left too late.

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3 ways to clean clogged hair and other gunk from your shower drain

At Salmon Plumbing, we’re familiar with the stress of a clogged drain during a nice, hot shower.  

We also know the frustration that can follow when wrestling with the mass of hair, soap scum and other gunk that’s blocking your water flow just isn’t working!

This is a pretty common problem, so we’ve decided to put together three proFISHional tips from the team at Salmon Plumbing to help you clear your drains and avoid any upset.

  1. Alternate baking soda, vinegar and plunging.

It’s often a surprise when our customers haven’t heard of this one – it’s in every mother’s homecare cookbook!

For this, you’ll need one cup of baking soda, one cup of vinegar, boiling water and a cup plunger.

Then you simply follow these steps:

  • Pour a cup of baking soda down the drain.
  • After that, pour a cup of vinegar down the drain (this should create a chemical reaction that will cause fizzing in your drain).
  • Once the fizzing has died down, wait five minutes and boil some water.
  • Next, pour the boiling water slowly down the drain.
  • Finally, run some water down the drain and start plunging.

The baking soda and vinegar will break up any hair and gunk, and the boiling water helps to pass this waste through the drain, removing the blockage.  The plunging ensures that the blockage is completely dislodged and out of your system.

  1. Remove the drain stopper and use pliers to extract the hair and gunk.

This is certainly the hands-on approach most want to avoid, unfortunately, sometimes it’s necessary if your shower drain is very clogged.

For this, you’ll need a screwdriver, rubber gloves, a torch and needle-nose pliers.

Then, you simply follow these steps:

  • Remove the shower grate from your drain, this is where you may need your screwdriver.
  • Once you’ve got a clear opening to the drain below, shine your torch in it.
  • You should see the hairy culprit sitting in the drain.
  • Put the gloves on and use the needle-nose pliers to pull out the mass in your drain.
  • After removing the gunk, run some hot water down the drain.
  • Finally, reinstall the grate and ensure everything’s working properly.
  1. Use a drain cleaner to get rid of those blockages you can’t quite reach.

We know that a lot of people don’t like this option because of the chemicals that are often found in drain cleaners. We don’t really like them either as a lot of them can hurt our fishy brothers and sisters in the ocean!

Luckily, we’ve found a plumbing pipe cleaning product that contains no chemicals. It’s called the CLR Power Plumber.

It essentially works the same way as a plunger, except without the mess!

To use it, run the water in your shower and allow some water to pool. Then, submerge the cap of the CLR Power Plumber can and place it over the drain opening. Then, press firmly down. This should expand the gas in the can and push the blockage down and out. Then Hey Presto – No more clogged shower drain!

And if all else fails, get on the phone and call your local plumber to sort it out for you.

The team at Salmon Plumbing are available around the clock to support the Brisbane region with their plumbing problems and enquiries.

If you need help, simply dial 07 3862 2600 at any hour of the day and our team will pick up the phone and organise the assistance you need.

For more at-home plumbing tips, or to learn about Australia’s plumbing history, click here to read the Salmon Plumbing blog.