Is It OK To Snake My Own Drain?

snaking a drain

When a drain clogs, you want it cleared as fast and as cheaply as possible, so doing the job yourself often seems like the most practical choice. While snaking your own drains makes sense at times, for serious clogs, you’re better off calling a professional plumbing service.

Handling Minor Clogs

Plumber’s snakes, or drain augers, work by pushing a metal coil on a stiff cable down into the pipe. They’re driven either by manual or electric power. As the coil progresses down the drain, it breaks up debris or grabs onto it so you can pull it out. Snaking a drain is usually the next step after plunging failed to clear the clog.

Small manual drain snakes are handy for pulling out minor hair clogs, whereas larger electric models can cut through more stubborn clogs caused by greasy foods, vegetable peels, and long-term hair buildup. Neither should require extreme force. Only snake your drain if you’re able to get the cable down easily and you can clear the clog with one or two attempts. Trying to force the snake down could damage your pipes or worsen the clog.

When to Call a Pro

A drain that’s blocked so severely that little to no water flows down is best left to a professional. The same goes if you suspect your drain is blocked by a foreign object such as a toothbrush. Snaking the drain will only push the object deeper into the pipes, making it harder and more expensive for a plumber to remove.

If you have a drain that clogs repeatedly, it’s time to call a professional plumbing service. Stubborn drain problems are often caused by something hidden deeper in the plumbing system, such as heavy buildup. If multiple, repeated clogs are showing up on the ground floor of your home, contact a plumber as soon as possible. This is a sign of a sewer line blockage, which can eventually flood part of your home.

If you need a trustworthy, professional plumbing service in the Los Angeles area, contact Reliance Home Services.