Best way to clear a slow drain.


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Old 05-26-10, 12:41 PM
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Best way to clear a slow drain.

After moving into my house 2 years ago, the drain in the bathroom vanity began to slow quite a bit. I took apart the trap and looked inside and it was clear. I unscrewed the stopped in the sink and looked down and could see lots of scum stuck to the pipe. I've always been advised to avoid draino when clearing drains. In this situation I used it because I didn't know how else to clear it and putting the stopper back in was a pain. The problem appears to be repeating itself. Is there another way to clear the drain without using draino? I'm afraid frequent use may cause deterioration.
 
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Old 05-27-10, 05:48 AM
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Are you saying that the tail pipe between the sink & the trap is clogged? If that's the case, you should be able to run a snake that short distance, even if you did it from the bottom up.

Something tells me that's not the cause.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 08:21 AM
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That's what I am saying. I looked down there the first time several months ago. There was definitely a lot of scum on the inside of the pipes and the stopper mechanism. The stopper mechanism was in the way so I didn't run a snake.

What do you think the issue is? The trap was clear. All this piping is fairly new. It's a short run to the 4" main and draino cleared it right up.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 08:30 AM
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Bathroom sinks get pretty nasty. Shaving, brushing hair, lotions, the lotion type soaps...all that leads to a lot of crud.

Many times what happens is, it builds up in the overflow openings in the pop-up assembly and that slows the water flow. Both mine were like that when I first moved here.

I just removed the pop-up and used a bent wire and an old toothbrush to clean out the openings in the pipe, then poured really hot (as in almost boiling) water down and they were just fine.

I also use the enzyme type cleaner (ZEP Drain Care is one brand) about every 2 or 3 months.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 08:42 AM
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Yeah. I did notice the overflow was still slow after I used draino on it. What's the best way to remove the popup? Last timeI just unscrewed it and it was hard to get it back on the screw to reinstall.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 09:25 AM
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Most of them just fit over the end of a lever that is activated by the pull on top...your's May be different.

Most times you can put it in the fully open position, grasp the raised popup and wiggle it and it will slide off the lever in the drain.

Sounds like yours may have an actual stopper plug of some sort?
 
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Old 05-28-10, 09:41 AM
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Consider the enzyme treatment that Gunguy45 mentioned. It won't clear it overnight but if you follow directions and retreat as instructed, your drain should be clear in a week or less. No damage to pipes or taking anything apart.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Gunguy45 View Post
Most of them just fit over the end of a lever that is activated by the pull on top...your's May be different.

Most times you can put it in the fully open position, grasp the raised popup and wiggle it and it will slide off the lever in the drain.

Sounds like yours may have an actual stopper plug of some sort?
I just took a look at my stopper again. Unscrewed it and what not. I think it is the way you describe, but the horizontal rod is too far into the pipe for me to wiggle the stopper off of it. I should be able to adjust that the next time I need to remove it.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by drooplug View Post
I just took a look at my stopper again. Unscrewed it and what not. I think it is the way you describe, but the horizontal rod is too far into the pipe for me to wiggle the stopper off of it. I should be able to adjust that the next time I need to remove it.
Most pop-up drains have two ways to put in the stopper, one is to put it in the tamper proof hole and they then can't be pulled out, the other way is to put them in the slot in the stopper and they will come out with a slight turn, what you have to do is loosen the rod going into the drain and pull the stopper out, replace the rod and put the stopper back in, you may have to turn it a little, (this may be a little different, but most work with the same idea).
 
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Old 05-28-10, 01:35 PM
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Remove the trap again & clean it from the bottom up.
 
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Old 05-28-10, 02:19 PM
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Every couple of month I pour a cup of baking soda followed by a cup of white vinegar and let set for about an hour then I flush it with hot water (almost boiling).
 
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Old 07-23-10, 05:03 PM
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I finally got to taking out my stopper and checking things out. The pipe was virtually clear. The stopper had some gross gunk up near the top that I cleaned off. My over flow drain was plugged up with the same stuff. I took a wire and poked those out. The drain was better but still didn't empty easily so I tried raising the level of the stopper and that did the trick.

So now everything is in working order and I learned quite a bit from doing it.
 
 

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