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How to Fix a Slow Drain

By November 29, 2016No Comments

Are your sinks or showers taking forever to drain? This is an annoying problem most of us have dealt with at some point. When you are in the shower and it starts turning into a bath, when you turn off the sink after brushing your teeth, or washing your hands and the soap and tooth paste stick to the sink. These are all results of a slow drain. So how can you fix it? Some solutions include: home remedies, drain cleaners, plungers, and snaking.


Home Remedy

If you don’t want to use harsh chemicals you can use this home remedy to fix a slow drain.


  1. 1/2 cup table salt
  2. 1/2 cup baking soda
  3. 1/2 cup vinegar
  4. Boiling water

Start by removing the sink pop-up or tub stopper. Combine the salt and baking soda in a bowl then pour the mixture down the slow drain. Next pour the vinegar in the drain covering the salt and baking soda (the mixture will fizz and bubble). Let the mixture sit in the drain for about 15-20 minutes. After you’ve let it sit, pour the boiling water down the drain. This should clean out the clog. If needed, repeat the process.

Drain Cleaners

If the home remedies aren’t for you, store bought drain cleaners are always an option. Drain cleaners range from about $7-$50 depending on the amount you want. You will pour the directed amount down your drain wait about 10-20 minutes and then rinse with hot water.


Plungers are also an easy way to help a slow drain. The first step you need to take is removing the sink pop-up or the tub stopper. If you don’t remove this, the plunging will only move the stopper up and down.

You will want to fill the sink/tub with enough water to cover the drain. Next, you will place the plunger directly over the drain applying pressure creating a suction.

Using the handle of the plunger, you’ll want to plunge it up and down several times. If the water starts to drain quickly you have removed the clog, if the water is remaining or draining slowly, you will have to repeat the process.


This method is for more difficult clogs and will require some materials.


  • bucket
  • screwdriver or wrench
  • plumbers snake/drain snake (can be substituted for a straighter wire hanger bending one end to create a hook)

First, you want to place the bucket underneath the P-trap, this is the curved part of the pipe that comes directly from the drain. Next, check to see what is holding the pipe together. You will either need your screwdriver or your wrench.

Once you remove the P-trap, some water or may leak out and you should be able to see the clog. Use your drain snake or coat hanger to fish the clog out. If you cannot see the clog it might be further in the pipe. This is when you will need a drain snake. Once you have cleared the drain, tightly secure the P-trap back into place. Now you can turn your sink on and the water should drain at a normal speed.

If you’ve tried all of these and still have a slow drain, it’s time to call in a professional.

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