Tips For Preventing And Clearing Shower Drain Clogs

Posted on: 7 February 2017

For many homeowners, clogged drains are par for the course and fixing them is relatively simple – use a snake or remove the trap and clear it out. This is all well and good for something like a sink drain, but you can be left scratching your head when the shower drain clogs since it is in the floor and the trap isn't accessible. The following tips can help you avoid these clogs, while providing help if one still occurs.

Tip #1: Change out the drain screen

If clogs happen often, the drain screen could be at fault. This is often the case if you have pets or long hair, since both situations can lead to a lot of hair clogging inside the drain. Switch out the drain cover for one with smaller openings or with a mesh screen inside of it. This will trap the hair above the drain screen, so it's simple to scoop it out and throw it away.

Tip #2: Flush the drain weekly

Soap scum and mineral deposits from the water are another cause for shower drain clogs. This is especially true if you tend to take cooler showers or finish your shower with a cold water rinse, since hot water is needed to dissolve any soap scum in the drain. You can help the process along by bringing a kettle of water to a boil once a week. Simply pour the boiling water down the drain to rinse away any soap scum before it builds up to clogging levels.

Tip #3: Know how to access the drain

The most challenging part of clearing a clog in a shower drain is accessing the actual drain pipe. Fortunately, this is as simple as unscrewing the screw in the center of your drain screen and removing it. You can then place a drain snake down the drain to pull out any scum or hair that is clogging it. Keep in mind that some floor drains have a float in them, which you won't be able to get past with the drain snake. In this case, look for a small nut next to the drain, just beneath where the drain screen fits into place. Remove this to reveal a small bypass hole. You can then feed the snake through this hole to clear the drain. Just make sure to replace the nut before putting the screen back on.

If the clog persists or you simply can't get it cleared, contact a plumber like Mr Rooter in your area for help.

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Knowing When It’s Time to Call the Plumber

My name is Jason Lawrence, or around my house I’m sometimes known as “Daddy Fix-It.” My wife Sarah and I have four children all under the age of ten. I didn’t start out as a guy who was handy around the house, but I am learning to become a do-it-yourselfer for sure. Did I mention that I’m a bit stubborn? There are times I struggle with projects a little too long, and it takes my wife stepping in to convince me that it’s time to call a professional. I’ve become especially handy with plumbing projects. I don’t know why kids think toys belong in the toilet and doll hair is good for the bathtub drain, but around here those are weekly events. I’m going to share some of my experiences, how I fixed some of our plumbing problems, and when it becomes time to call the plumber.

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