Pipe clogs are a nightmare and can lead to serious plumbing problems. But they’re often preventable with basic cleanliness and regular maintenance.

For example, don’t flush facial tissues, paper towels, cotton balls or feminine hygiene products. These items are notorious for clogging toilets and should always go into the trash can.

Don’t Push Food Down the Sink

It’s easy to throw everything from leftover food scraps to coffee grounds and eggshells down the kitchen drain, but it isn’t good for your pipes. These items are too large to break down and can cause major clogs. Instead, put these things in the trash can.

Grease is another culprit. It may be liquid when it’s warm, but once it cools, it coagulates into drain-clogging sludge. To keep this from happening, pour cooking grease into a container, like an empty can or jar, and then throw it in the trash.

You should also avoid putting stringy foods, such as banana peels and potato peels, down the sink. These foods are likely to get stuck in your plumbing and can clog your drains or even your garbage disposal. Instead, toss these into your compost bin or trash can.

If you do encounter a food clog, try using a combination of baking soda and vinegar to create a chemical reaction that will cut through the clog and allow water to pass through. You can also try pouring hot water down the drain afterward to flush out any remaining clogs and to clear away any residue. Repeat this process weekly to keep your drains clog-free. A regular cleaning routine can help prevent clogs and save you money on expensive repair bills in the future. This is especially important for older homes with aging pipes and garbage disposals.

Don’t Flush Anything Other Than Toilet Paper

The only items that should be flushed are human waste and toilet paper. Anything else can cause serious clogs and damage to your pipes. These include the following:

Menstrual products: Although these might say “flushable” on the package, they don’t break down in water and can lodge in your plumbing system. It is best to throw them away in the trash.

Dental floss: Floss is not biodegradable and can easily clog your drains. Instead, wrap it up in paper and toss it in the garbage.

Grease: While it might be liquid when it goes down your drain, grease hardens into a powerful clog that requires professional help to remove.

The best way to prevent clogs from forming in your kitchen sink or toilet is to be mindful of what you put down the drain and use a few simple tools, such as a plunger, wire hanger, and a snake, when needed. Additionally, pouring hot water down your drains once a week will keep them clear of gunk.

Don’t Put Baby Diapers Down the Toilet

Whether or not your little one is still in diapers, it is best to avoid putting them down the toilet. They are not only disgusting to see on the back of public toilets, but they also clog pipes. If you are going to use disposable diapers, make sure to follow the package instructions about how to dispose of them.

Modern diapers are made of highly absorbent materials to wick away moisture and keep your baby’s skin dry. These materials also expand when they get wet. That’s why it is so important to never flush them – they will swell up and become stuck inside the toilet or sewer drain pipes, where they can collect with other materials that can cause a major clog.

Not to mention, disposable diapers that go to landfills are contaminated with human feces, which can leak into groundwater and contribute to climate change. Even if you buy “biodegradable” disposable diapers, they will end up in landfills just the same.

Don’t Put Too Much Paper Down the Drain

Clogged drains and sewer pipes can cause major plumbing issues that require a professional’s help to resolve. They can also contaminate the water system and cause environmental damage. Preventing these problems from occurring is simple if you are careful about what goes into your pipes and drains.

While the majority of clogs are caused by food waste and hair, other materials can also cause serious problems. Some of these substances can eat away at the insides of your pipes, while others can cause chemical damage.

One of the most common causes of clogged drains is excess paper. While it is fine to use toilet paper, other paper products like paper towels, cotton balls, wipes, sanitary products and tissue should never be flushed. This material is extremely absorbent, and it can quickly clog your pipes.

It is best to put these types of products in a garbage can or into the trash. You should also avoid throwing away any type of stringy substance down your drains, such as dental floss or fishing line. This can tangle and trap other items that would otherwise go down the drains, leading to a big clog.

Rather than pouring grease or oil down the drain, you can dispose of it in a hot water pot of boiling water. This will allow the grease and oils to solidify, which prevents them from traveling down the drain and causing a blockage.

Don’t Use Chemical Drain Cleaners

While liquid drain cleaners may seem like a quick, easy fix for pesky clogs, they can actually do more damage than good. Most off-the-shelf chemical drain cleaners initiate a chemical reaction once they come into contact with the clog material. This can cause the clog to break down or dissolve, but the reaction also produces heat. This heat can wreak havoc on pipes by melting, cracking, or breaking them.

Additionally, these cleaners often emit noxious fumes that can be dangerous to your health and irritating to your nose and lungs. The chemicals they use can also damage the surface of your pipes, leaving them vulnerable to future clogs and damage.

Using natural solutions and regular maintenance can help prevent unexpected drain clogs and other plumbing problems in your home. A simple mixture of baking soda and vinegar can be effective, as can a drain snake or a kettle full of boiling water. You can also install an aerator or other drain flow control device to reduce the risk of clogs by promoting more even water flow through your pipes.

For severe buildup or recurring clogs, consider hiring a plumber, especially a good one, like the experts that are the Fort Wayne plumbers, to conduct a hydro-jetting service in your home. This advanced mechanical method uses high-pressure water to blast away pipe debris and remove clogs without the need for chemical reactions or harsh ingredients. Alternatively, you can invest in a slender auger called a drain snake to loosen and remove most types of clogs without the need for chemicals or power tools.

Don’t Overcrowd Your Drains

Clogged drains and sewer lines are often caused by the gradual accumulation of items over long periods of time. However, basic cleanliness and maintenance can help counteract this issue by eliminating the accumulation of these things in your pipes and preventing them from becoming more serious problems that require professional drain cleaning or sewer repair in Gilbert.

For example, a grate placed over a sink can help prevent non-liquid materials from entering the drain, including food, hair, or other miscellaneous debris that may lead to a clogged drain or sewer line. These are inexpensive to purchase and easy to install yourself, making them a simple way to prevent unexpected drain clogs.

In addition to using a grate on drains, it is also a good idea to use safe enzyme treatments on a monthly basis to prevent buildup in your pipes. These products are easy to apply and much safer for your indoor air quality and your health than chemical drain cleaners found at most hardware stores.

Finally, it is always a good idea to have your plumbing drains inspected on a regular basis by a professional plumber to ensure that they are clear of obstructions and functioning properly. A professional plumber can conduct a visual inspection of the entire plumbing system and catch any potential issues before they become severe clogs or worsen over time. Contact Camcor Plumbing to schedule a plumbing service today!