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How to Unclog a Drain with a Snake

Snake unclogs a drain

At Brownie's Septic & Plumbing, we’ve all come face-to-face with a clogged drain. It’s never fun. Especially when the plunger just isn’t cutting it. If you find yourself in a situation where a plunger isn’t enough, consider using a drain snake. Drain snakes are incredibly useful and generally take care of the issue within minutes. There are different types of drain snakes that work on various types of drains, in this blog post we’ll be focusing on drain snakes for toilets.

What is a drain snake?

A drain snake is essentially a long metal cable with an auger on the end; this looks like uncoiled spring or corkscrew. It is typically hand-powered and is about 50 feet long.

How does a drain snake work?

Drain snakes work a bit differently than plungers. They are effective at breaking up whatever obstruction is clogging your drain rather than just forcing it down the drain. They do this by going deep into your drainage system and pulling the clog out. The drain augur can snake itself around the drain pipe with few obstacles until it reaches the clog. Then, the twisting motion works as a hook to pull the obstruction out.

It’s not a good idea to use the same drain augur on your toilet as you use in your kitchen. There are a few differences between a toilet and sink snakes, for instance, toilet augurs usually come with a plastic cover to not damage the toilet.

Drain snakes are user-friendly and a necessity for anyone with a home. If you’ve ever thought about calling a plumber, try a drain snake out first.

Prepare yourself for the sight, because whatever you pull out of your toilet is not going to be pretty.

Step-by-Step on How to Unclog a Shower Drain with a Snake

  1. First, start with spreading either old towels or newspaper around whatever you’re trying to unclog. This can be your toilet, kitchen sink or shower drain. The towels and newspaper are there to catch the debris that comes up with the “clog” because it can get a little messy.
  2. Then, you’ll need to place the auger end of the snake into the drain. As you feed more of the cable inside the drain, you should twist the handle.
  3. Once your snake hits the obstruction, it’ll start giving some resistance. You’ll want to continuously crank until you can feel it hook the clog.
  4. Finally, slowly pull the cable out and everything that came back up with it. You will typically need to run your water to flush the drain. Then clean your snake.

If snaking the drain yourself doesn’t work, there are other heavy duty methods that a professional plumber can use to get your drain cleared in no time! The plumbing experts at Brownie’s Septic & Plumbing are very experienced in the art of all things bathroom related! Give us a call or visit our website to learn more.

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