Terms of the Trade: What Is a Drain Snake?

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A drain snake is a handy tool to have on hand when you encounter the inevitable clogged drain. Instead of calling a plumber, you can fish this flexible metal cable down the drain in the hopes that the auger will grab onto the obstruction in the pipes that is causing the backup. By turning the handle, you turn the flexible cable around and down the pipe's path and can pull up whatever is causing the obstruction.