There is nothing more frustrating than blocked drains and they usually happen at the worst time possible – like the holidays when you have company over and the toilets are backing up!
Let the experts at Francis Plumbing & Heating ClimateCare unblock those drains for you using the professional tools that cut through the worst block drains. All work is performed by licensed and insured plumbers (not your local handyman) so you know the plumbing work is done right the first time and is backed by our $5 million dollar liability insurance.
We are there for you every step of the way and have been unblocking drains for over 80 years. We’ve seen it all from: Toys, makeup, diapers, cell phones and more accidentally flushed down the toilet to expensive jewelry accidentally dropped down the drain sink drain – to city sewers backing up filling your basement with nightmarish smells & a clean up you never want to live through.
The video shows a blocked main drain where water and sewage has backed up into a basement, this can be easily fixed by a licensed plumber who will not only clear the blocked drain but will use a shop vac to help remove the contaminated waste water from your basement. There are things you can to do help your drains so that you never have to experience this nightmare.
If you have a blocked drain you could try a few of these tips for unblocking it yourself:
Tip #1: For shower/tub drains use a coat hanger wire to help pull up hair and clogs. You do this by straigtening out a wire hanger then with a pair of pliers bend a small hook at the end – make sure the hook is narrow enough to fit in your drain then slide it down to catch whatever hair is caught in the drain and pull it up and out – repeat until nothing else comes up (your goal is to pull clumps out NOT push them in deeper), then run hot water to flush out whatever is left over.
Tip #2: Boiling water to dissolve clogs in showers, tubs or sinks – warning not recommended for porcelain sinks or toilets (the heat can cause porcelain to crack especially toilets where in addition to potential cracks it can melt the wax seal that prevents your toilet from leaking). This usually works best in stainless steel kitchen sinks where grease can build up in the drains – the hot water melts the grease allowing the water to flush the clog away. If the sink is already full, remove as much water as you can first before trying this. Add a bit of dish soap to your boiling hot water to help separate the grease so it can flush out easier. This tip has always come in handy during the holidays especially with turkey grease (which really shouldn’t be poured down drains but you will always have residual grease left over from your dishes and cooking pots).
Tip #3: NEVER USE A CHEMICAL DRAIN CLEANER – most of these cleaners are very toxic and not only are they hard on your pipes (especially the connection joints in your drain pipes that can cause leaks) but worse can cause painful chemical burns if you get splashed with it or worse blindness if splashed in the eyes. Instead use a bio-friendly green drain cleaner such as bio-clean (we sell bio-clean as a green and safe alternative). Bio-clean when used regularly keeps drains flowing to break up the gunk in your drains before they build up into clogs. Although not as effective as bi0-clean you can also make your own homemade drain cleaner solution.
Homemade drain cleaner is easy and is made of 1/3 cup of baking soda and 1/3 cup of vinegar. When combined these fizz up quickly so poor it immediately down your drains, then let it sit to do it’s job. It is a slower process than some drain cleaning solutions but if the clog isn’t too bad it works well enough. Just flush with hot water when done.
Tip #4: Using a plunger – this works best in toilets but can be used in tubs and sinks as well. Remove any excess water from the overflowing toilet then place the plunger over the drain opening making sure that the seal is tight then press firmly and repeatedly. You can also do this after you use baking soda and vinegar to help break up the last of the clog. For a sink you will also need to remove any excess water before placing the plunger over the drain – then press down firmly, pull up then repeat till the water starts to drain. WARNING: if you have an inset kitchen sink (where the rim of the sink sits under the counter) do not use a plunger – the pressure you apply could force the adhesive to let go which is holding your sink up.
Tip #5: If you live in a low lying area in Ottawa where your basement floor drain is prone to city sewer backup you may qualify for a plumbing protection device where the City pays 50% to 100% of the cost of adding this device. Learn more here.