You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

11 Best Drain Cleaners to Quickly Unclog Your Sink

Reader's Digest Logo By Marisa Hillman of Reader's Digest | Slide 1 of 12: When the shower water rises to your ankles or a toilet flush leads to an overflow, it's time to add unclogging your drains to your cleaning schedule. A clogged pipe or drain is a common problem, but luckily it's one with a simple solution. Sometimes you need to break out the toilet plunger. Other times, you'll want to invest in the best drain cleaner or a drain snake. And then there are times when you'll have to clean your garbage disposal or unclog your sink. We talked to Roger Wakefield, owner of Texas Green Plumbing and YouTube's go-to plumber, about choosing the right drain cleaner. Start by using a drain-cleaning tool called a hand snake, he says. Chemical drain cleaners, he cautions, can harm your plumbing system, will poison pets and kids who get into them, and ultimately end up at water treatment plants. If you must use a drain cleaner, opt for an all-natural product. And if you need to use a harsher chemical cleaner, be sure to thoroughly read the label—and follow the directions to a T. Before you start shopping for the best drain cleaner, determine which of the three types you need. If your drains are clogged with hair (a common issue when cleaning the bathroom), try nontoxic enzymatic drain cleaners, which contain enzyme-producing bacteria that feed on clogs caused by soft materials. If food, grease, or soap scum are causing a backlog in your sink or tub, look for a caustic drain cleaner, which will contain alkaline chemicals that dissolve clogs. And if you have a heavy-duty (or paper-based) clog, go with an acidic drain cleaner. But keep in mind: These are made with sulfuric acid or hydrochloric acid, so use with caution and protection.

Clearing out clogs

When the shower water rises to your ankles or a toilet flush leads to an overflow, it's time to add unclogging your drains to your cleaning schedule. A clogged pipe or drain is a common problem, but luckily it's one with a simple solution. Sometimes you need to break out the toilet plunger. Other times, you'll want to invest in the best drain cleaner or a drain snake. And then there are times when you'll have to clean your garbage disposal or unclog your sink.

We talked to Roger Wakefield, owner of Texas Green Plumbing and YouTube's go-to plumber, about choosing the right drain cleaner. Start by using a drain-cleaning tool called a hand snake, he says. Chemical drain cleaners, he cautions, can harm your plumbing system, will poison pets and kids who get into them, and ultimately end up at water treatment plants. If you must use a drain cleaner, opt for an all-natural product. And if you need to use a harsher chemical cleaner, be sure to thoroughly read the label—and follow the directions to a T.

Before you start shopping for the best drain cleaner, determine which of the three types you need. If your drains are clogged with hair (a common issue when cleaning the bathroom), try nontoxic enzymatic drain cleaners, which contain enzyme-producing bacteria that feed on clogs caused by soft materials. If food, grease, or soap scum are causing a backlog in your sink or tub, look for a caustic drain cleaner, which will contain alkaline chemicals that dissolve clogs. And if you have a heavy-duty (or paper-based) clog, go with an acidic drain cleaner. But keep in mind: These are made with sulfuric acid or hydrochloric acid, so use with caution and protection.

© rd.com, via amazon.com (2)

More from Reader's Digest

Reader's Digest
Reader's Digest
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon