In order to remove some tightly packed drain clogs in your sinks, or bathroom fixtures, a drain snake cable will be needed. This type of tool is basically a long cable attached to a spindle that turns the cable like a drill. With various attachments you can drill through some very tough clogs without using harmful chemicals or replacing the drain.
When purchasing a drain snake, special attention should be made to the drain snake cable itself. This is the working part of the entire tool and will determine the success, or failure, of the drain snake when you use it. If you are in the market for a new drain snake, here are a few things to consider before buying it.
Length of Drain Snake Cable
The first thing to look at when purchasing a drain snake cable is how long it is. If you have a three story home and suspect the clog in the drain might be towards the bottom of the system, you will need to have a long cable to reach that far. A good 25 foot drain snake cable will work for most applications, but a 50 foot length will make sure that you never have to worry about running out of cable.
Auger Mechanism for Cable
How the snake is rotated in the drain is also another consideration that you want to look at. Some cheaper models of drain snakes do not have a rotor assembly on their auger mechanism. This means that it not only turns the drain snake cable, but it also twists it. Look for the cables that are attached to a rotor that will only spin the cable without twisting it.
Drain Snake Cable Ends
There are several different kinds of ends that are available on the drain snake itself or as an accessory. Some drain snakes allow the user to switch out the ends for different types of clogs. The most prominent are a multi-prong attachment, a large bore drill attachment, or a simple spiral spring. They will be able to work at different clogs in different ways. Look for the drain snake cable that will work with your frequent clogs, or one that can be changed.
Drain Snake Cable Storage
The actual cable is not the only part of the snake that is important. The type of housing that the drain snake cable is rolled into is also an important factor. This can be a side port where the cable is reeled into, or a round body that the snake cable coils into. The latter is the better option so that there is not problems with getting tangled or bent.
Diameter of Drain Snake Cable
Depending on the type of drain that you need to snake, the diameter of the cable will also play a big part of the effectiveness of the tool. Something that is too large will not be able to work as well as one that is slightly undersized. The snake needs to be able to coil within the pipe and if it is constantly being suppressed by the walls of the drain it can either cause the drain to crack, or simply not work. Choose a cable that is 1/2 inch, to 1 inch, smaller than the diameter of the drain pipe.