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Clogged drains are a common plumbing problem in most homes. Homeowners have had to turn to quick temporary solutions to resolve clogs and blockages. Unfortunately, some of these temporary fixes tend to be more hazardous in the long term. One of these fixes is chemical drain cleaners. They have been marketed as inexpensive and convenient for your plumbing system. Unfortunately, what they fail to mention are the deadly effects it has on your plumbing.
Our New Orleans, LA, drain cleaning service has found that chemical drains are harmful to your plumbing system. In this piece, we discuss the effects of the chemical drain cleaners you use in your home.
How Do Chemical Drain Cleaners Work?
Often, drain cleaners are available in foam, liquid, gel, crystal and powder form. They generally function the same way. The chemicals are designed to react with the clog, thereby generating heat and gas. In effect, the blockage dissolves, and water continues to flow.
To ensure their effectiveness, drain cleaners are highly concentrated with lye, peroxide and bleach, among other harmful chemicals. If inhaled or swallowed, drain cleaners can be fatal and may result in severe burns when they come in contact with the skin. For this reason, homeowners are advised to contact a professional drain cleaning service in New Orleans, LA.
What Are the Effects of Drain Cleaners?
There are varied reasons why you should contact a drain cleaning professional instead of using chemical drain cleaners. Here are some of the effects of drain cleaners on your plumbing system:
Damage to Pipes
Using a combination of harsh chemicals, chemical drain cleaners can effectively burn through any clogs in your pipe. Atop freeing your pipe off any potential clogs, these drain cleaners also expose your pipes to gas and heat, which can be fatal if your pipes are very old or are made of soft PVC. In effect, this makes your pipes more prone to leaking. If the exposure is too harsh or too often, it may also corrode the chalking, old seals and metal fittings.
When the clog in your pipes is caused by something like a tree root, the effect caused by chemical drain cleaners is worse. Since the drain cleaner cannot burn through plant matter, it will be left sitting in your pipes with enough time to cause serious damage. This means you will spend more when a drain cleaning service repairs your plumbing system.
Danger to Homeowners
The chemicals used to make drain cleaners are harmful to its users as well. The fumes they produce once deposited in your drain can cause irritations to your respiratory system, skin and eyes. When they come into contact with your skin, they also cause severe burns and rashes. Unfortunately, these chemicals can even burn through the glove; hence it is advisable to leave the technical work to a drain cleaning service.
Harmful to the Environment
Chemical drain cleaners result in harmful plumbing waste. Customarily, the residue from chemical drain cleaners seeps into the soil and groundwater. Any plants that are nearby will be affected, and so will the groundwater nearby that may probably be used for daily activities in the home. To be more environmentally conscious and to avoid such dangers, it is advisable to contact a draining cleaning service near you.
Unexpected Additional Costs
While drain cleaners are touted as inexpensive, their additional costs make them expensive to homeowners. It damages pipes and septic tanks which will need repairs, maintenance or replacement. For this reason, it is advisable to contact a drain cleaning professional whenever you have any clogs or blockages.
Are There Safer Alternatives to Chemical Drain Cleaners?
There are safer means of getting rid of clogs and blockages in your draining system. Here are a few of them:
Use a Plunger
Using a plunger to create enough pressure in your pipes often helps dislodge clogs. It is an effective and inexpensive way to handle clogs. Ensure you seal the plunger around your drain in order to create a vacuum to force the clog out.
Use Bio Drain Cleaners
Unlike chemical drain cleaners, bio drain cleaners are safe for pets, humans and your pipes. They are available at hardware and home improvement stores and are reasonably priced. However, it is worth noting that drain cleaning service professionals have more potent bio drain cleaners and, admittedly, why you should consult them.
Bio drain cleaners introduce engineered bacteria to your pipes and drain. The bacteria then dissolve organic material such as soap scum, food residue and hair. Unlike chemical drain cleaners, bio drain cleaners are specifically engineered to deal with organic matter; hence they do not affect the surface of your plumbing system.
Baking Soda Mixed with Vinegar Solution
When mixed in the measurement of a half-cup vinegar to a third of a cup of baking soda, the mixture will start fizzing. Pour it down your drain. In effect, the fizzing will dislodge any gunk and hair that is likely still stuck in your drains. Later flush it down with some hot water to ensure it all washes away and clears the drain.
Other widely used mixtures include:
- Salt, vinegar and borax
- Dish soap and hot water
Hire Professional Drain Cleaning Services
Drain cleaning services are often the most reliable, effective, and safe way to handle clogs and blockages in your plumbing system. You need not face clogs every day; an expert drain cleaning service can diagnose the root of the problem and find long-term solutions. At bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of New Orleans, we are the leading drain cleaning service in New Orleans, LA. We boast zero overtime charges, zero trip charges, and 24/7 service availability. Get in touch with us today for more information about our services.