A clogged drain is one of the most common plumbing problems for households. A drain that repeatedly clogs is frustrating and a significant disruption. Besides being annoying, drain clogs can lead to flooding and sewage backups and cause severe damage to home fixtures. In severe cases, these clogs can make your house uninhabitable.

Drain clogs are often due to the materials you allow to go down your drains, including hair, soap scum, grease and food particles. Understanding what causes drain clogs can help you prevent them from recurring.

Our plumbing experts have put together this guide to help you understand the common causes of clogged drains and how to prevent and fix them. In most cases, you can unclog the drains by yourself. But, for severe or recurring clogs you may need to call a professional plumber to help unclog your drain.

If you are in Marana, AZ, contact our professional plumbing experts at Curtis Plumbing.

Common Causes of Drain Clogs

A drain clog can affect an isolated area like the toilet or the entire plumbing system depending on its location. Most drain clogs are also due to a combination of materials or substances like soap and hair rather than one substance. Here are some common causes of a clogged drain.

  1. Hair

Human hair and animal fur can combine with sticky substances like grease to form stubborn clogs that get stuck in the drain. This is common in bathroom sinks, showers, bathtubs, and laundry drains. Avoid disposing of human hair and pet hair in your drains. Install drain covers in affected areas. You should also consider regular cleaning of these areas. You can use a plunger or an auger (snake) to unclog your drains.

  1. Soap Scum

Most bar soaps are a by-product of animal fats that mixes with minerals in water to form soap scum. Soap scum often causes clogs when it coats the inside of drain pipes and trap hair and other debris. Soap scum can also accumulate by itself to cause slow drainage or backups.

You can prevent soap-related clogs by switching to liquid soap. You also need to regularly clean your bathroom and laundry area. You can pressure clean your bathroom to remove soap scum, otherwise, you can use a plunger or an auger to unblock your drains.

  1. Grease, Fats, and Oils

While you will not feel the immediate effects of pouring small amounts of grease or cooking fat down your kitchen drain, it can lead to serious plumbing problems. Over time, these substances solidify to form a coat that eventually blocks the kitchen drain.

This type of drain clog is often hard to unblock. You can prevent this clogging problem by disposing of used cooking fat, grease, and oils in the trash can and not pouring them down the kitchen sink. You can fix the issue by plunging or using an auger for severe clogs.

  1. Food Waste

You should not dispose of food waste in the kitchen sink or other drains as it leads to clogs. Over time, food waste builds up and clogs your drains. Additionally, some food waste like coffee grounds and eggshells don’t break down. And washing them down the drain can lead to clogs.

Prevention measures include disposing of food waste into the trash can instead of washing it down the kitchen sink. Consider using a filter in your sink to catch the small food particles that remain after scrapping your utensils. Plunging and cleaning your drains will help you fix the issue.

  1. Foreign Objects

There are some instances where you can unintentionally flush foreign objects down the toilet. These materials including toys, jewelry, feminine hygiene products, wipes, and pampers often clog the drains. Most of these foreign objects are non-biodegradable and can cause significant plumbing system problems.

Educate your family members on what should not be placed in the toilet or the bathroom and kitchen sinks. You should also cover your drains. If some foreign objects drop in the drain, avoid using the toilet or sink drain until a plumber removes it.

  1. Tree Roots

Tree roots can infiltrate sewer lines and other drains and block them. A tree root often invades a sewer line through minor leaks and cracks and completely blocks it. This can lead to significant plumbing issues for the entire house, including persistent drain clogs. Avoid planting trees or shrubs near sewer lines and other underground pipes.

If a tree root growth is the cause of your repeated drain clogs, you may need to contact a professional plumber to help you fix the issue. The plumber will use specialized tools to remove the tree roots and unclog your drain without damaging the pipes.

When to Call a Drain Cleaning Expert

If you follow the preventive measures that our plumbing experts have recommended in this guide, you will have significantly dealt with the often frustrating drain clogging problem. The DIY fix recommendations can also be helpful in plumbing emergencies.

While you can fix some of the drain clogging issues by yourself, some issues are complex and require a Marana drain cleaning professional to fix them. If your drains keep clogging even after several plunges and cleaning, it may be a sign of a bigger plumbing issue. You will need a plumber to inspect and fix the issue.

If you discover your drains are draining slower than usual or there is persistent foul odor from your drains even after a DIY fix, you should contact a plumber for drain cleaning services. While fixing blocked drains is a good skill to have, regular professional plumbing inspection and maintenance will help you save money in the long run.

Contact Marana’s Trusted Plumbing Experts

If your drain keeps clogging or you are experiencing related plumbing issues, contact our Marana skilled and experienced plumbers at Curtis Plumbing. We have over 45 years of plumbing experience and will help you fix all your plumbing issues. Call us today for efficient and timely plumbing services, including maintenance and repairs.