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Clogged Drain? How to Fix It & When to Call a Plumber

Are you dealing with clogged drains? From unpleasant odors to poor water flow, clogs can cause numerous issues.

Over time, they can build up and lead to long-term pipe damage. This disrupts your home's water supply and can become costly. The good news is there are ways to unclog your drains before the problems grow. In this blog, we'll cover everything you need to know about fixing a clogged drain, including:

  1. Assessing the severity of the clog
  2. DIY unclog methods
  3. When to call a plumber for your clogged drain

Keep reading to discover at-home methods for unclogging your drain and learn when it's time to contact a professional.

Got a Clogged Drain?

Our plumbers at Dalmatian Plumbing have decades of industry experience and can unclog your drain in no time. Serving the Atlanta area, we are your local experts ready to help. Call us at 678-730-6296 or schedule an appointment online for a complimentary estimate.

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Assess the Severity of the Clog

The first step is determining how serious the clog is. Here are some key ways to help assess a clog's severity:

  • Observe your drainage: Check the quality of your water drainage. If the water is slightly slower than usual, the clog is likely minor. However, if it's significantly slower — or barely draining — you might have a more serious clog on your hands.
  • Listen for odd noises: A gurgling sound from your drain indicates trapped air due to a significant clog.
  • Test multiple drains: Test multiple faucets and drains throughout your home to determine how widespread the problem is. If several drains are clogged, there may be an issue with your entire plumbing system.

If you suspect the clog is minor, you can try to unclog the drain yourself.

DIY Unclog Methods

Here are some DIY methods for unclogging a drain.


The most straightforward way to get rid of a clog is by plunging. First, ensure you're using the correct plunger — there are different plungers for sinks and toilets. Once you have the right tool, position it over the drain. There should be enough water to fill the inside of the plunger; if your water levels are low, add some. Then, bring the plunger down and cover the drain. The suction should make it stick over the drain.

The next step involves actually plunging, or moving the plunger up and down. The exact plunging motion varies depending on the type of drain — for example, you should plunge faster with bathtubs and sinks than with toilets.

After about 20 seconds, remove the plunger and check if the water is draining.

Hot Water Flushing

Another way to clear drains is through hot water flushing. This method is most effective for clogs caused by substance buildup (such as soap scum, food, and grease). Start by filling a kettle or pot with water and boiling it. When the water is ready, wait a few minutes before pouring it down your drain.

The high temperature, as well as the force of the water, can break up the substances and force them down the pipe. Remember that you may have to do two or three rounds of hot water flushing to dislodge a clog.

Use a Snake or Auger

If the above methods don't work, use a plumbing snake or auger. Unlike plungers, you'll have to navigate the tool into the drain. First, remove the drain stopper, then carefully steer the snake into the drain. As you move the snake further down, it may make contact with the clog. When this happens, rotate the plumbing snake to break up the substances.

Keep rotating the snake and moving it further down. If it's working, you may feel less resistance. If you think you've eliminated the clog, bring the snake back out and clean it. Then, turn on the tap to see if the water flows more freely.

Natural Drain Unclogging Remedies

Not everyone knows how to effectively use a plunger or plumbing snake. If you don't want to use these appliances and the boiling water trick doesn't work, consider trying these natural remedies:

  • Hot water and salt: Salt helps scrape away materials clinging to the interior of your pipes. Dissolving a quarter cup of salt in your hot water can be more effective than using hot water alone.
  • Baking soda and vinegar: Mixing baking soda with vinegar creates a foaming solution that can help dislodge clogs. Pour about half a cup of baking soda down the drain, then follow this with a cup of vinegar. After about 15 minutes, flush it with hot water.
  • Baking soda and lemon juice: If you don't have vinegar, substitute it with half a cup of lemon juice. Wait about 30 minutes before flushing with hot water.

When to Call a Plumber for Your Clogged Drain

While some clogs can be fixed with these remedies, others will need professional help. Here are some signs you should call a plumber:

  • The DIY remedies don't work
  • You have multiple clogged drains
  • You experience frequent blockages
  • The water is blocked completely

If you're looking for a professional plumber in the Atlanta area, our team at Dalmatian Plumbing is here to help. With our experience and dedication, we'll have your systems back up and running within 24 hours.

Dalmatian Plumbing Call us at 678-730-6296 or schedule an appointment online.

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Or Call 404-314-3993

For all your plumbing needs, we have the experts to handle it all. With our prompt and reliable service, you can trust that your plumbing problems will be resolved quickly and efficiently. Don't wait any longer, request service now and let Dalmatian Plumbing take care of all your plumbing needs.

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