What To Do When Your Pipes Are Too Old Or Damaged For Chemical Drain Cleaners


When people encounter a slow drain, one of the first things they often think to do is to reach for a chemical drain cleaner. These products are typically very effective at clearing clogs and can even remove built-up grunge that develops on the inside of the pipes, helping to prevent future clogs and getting rid of any bad smells. Unfortunately, though, they're not for every household. If you have very old pipes or have been told in the past that your pipes are in danger of corroding or are noticeably damaged, you could be putting yourself, your family, and even others at risk by using one of these drain cleaners. Here's why you shouldn't do it and what you can do to get your clog busted instead.

The Damage You Could Do

Drain cleaners are extremely caustic. They have to be in order to break through clogs in a pipe, but this is part of the reason why they always carry bold instructions to avoid letting any of the drain cleaner touch your skin.

Unfortunately, if your pipe is damaged or very old, drain cleaner can literally eat its way through the pipe. When this happens you've not only done extreme damage to your pipes but you also run the risk of coming into contact with the drain cleaner yourself.

To make matters worse, if you have a damaged pipe outdoors leading to your septic tank or the sewer line, drain cleaner can potentially leak from the pipe into the ground. This is obviously not good for the environment, but if you rely on groundwater or a well, it's extremely dangerous to your health and the health of your neighbors. 

The Alternative

Just because you can't use drain cleaning products doesn't mean that the situation is hopeless. Instead, you should call out your local plumber for a service called hydrojetting.

Hydrojetting is a form of drain cleaning that's gaining popularity of its effectiveness and its non-toxic qualities.

When a plumber arrives to perform this procedure, they'll bring some specialized equipment with them that's attached to the water supply in your home. Then, after threading a hose down the afflicted pipe, they'll turn on the pressure. This will blast an extremely high-powered stream of water down the pipe, forcing any blockages to break up and pass through. This is unlikely to cause any damage to your pipes, although if you know that you have pre-existing damage, it might be a good idea to talk to your plumber about having that fixed, too.


3 February 2020

What Lies Beneath: A Septic Website

You know what stinks? An overflowing septic tank that needs pumping. You know what doesn't stink? This website. Here, we dive into the most gnarly of septic-related topics without an ounce of embarrassment. Here, you'll find articles on sewage backups, how to keep your family from ruining your septic tank, and what you should and should not flush down your toilet. If it's septic-related, you can bet we will go there. Your septic tank may lie beneath the soil, but we don't believe in hiding. Start reading here, and you'll also gain a better understanding of how septic systems work and how to maintain them. Your pipes and grass will thank you.