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Dangers of Drain Cleaning Chemicals

August 9, 2020
dangers of drain cleaning chemicals
Dangers of drain cleaning chemicals

We attended a job today where the customer had tried to clear a blocked drain themselves using common drain cleaning chemicals and a plunger… Sadly, the plunger caused the drain acid to splash into her husbands eye putting him in hospital with a very serious eye injury, for this reason here at Clearflow Drains we have put together a few tips to prevent further accidents and the dangers of drain cleaning chemicals in general.

When drain cleaning chemicals DON’T work, what to do?

Let’s say that the drain cleaning chemicals you tried to use still didn’t unblock the toilet/drain or sink… in this instance we would advise AGAINST using any more drain cleaning solutions.
This would be an indication that the blockage is possibly far into the drainage system and may require professional drain jetting services and/or a Drain CCTV Camera to determine the cause of the blockage. If you’re in the West Midlands and require an emergency drain clearing service, get in touch with us!

How do Drain Cleaning Chemicals Work?

Chemical drain cleaners like caustic soda and ‘ one shot ‘ are drain cleaning remedies that work by eating away at the blockage you’ve applied it to. Care should be taken as these cleaning chemicals can easily blind and burn skin if you come into contact with them. If correctly used, these products are extremely effective, particularly for blockages deeper in the drain.

Either liquid or crystal in form, chemical drain cleaners are generally poured into the drain opening and allowed to sit for a period of time. During this period the sink, bath etc. MUST NOT BE USED!

When using a chemical drain cleaner always follow the manufacturer’s directions, it’s easy to forget they’re there but you should always read them for peace of mind.

What Organic Drain Cleaning Remedies are there?

The most common organic drain unblocking solution you can use would be as simple as hot water and soap. You could also use other solutions such as;

1. Baking Soda and Vinegar (why?)
2. Salt, Vinegar and Borax
3. Good ol' Plunger
4. If none of the above work, call out a professional drain cleaner.

7 Cautions when using drain cleaning chemicals:

  • Never mix one type of drain cleaner with another.
  • Never mix drain cleaners with other cleaning products as toxic fumes may be produced.
  • Always ensure good ventilation when using chemical drain cleaners.
  • Don’t allow drain cleaners to remain in contact with porcelain or enamel surfaces for any length of time as the caustic nature of the cleaner will degrade the finish.
  • Never us a plunger on a drain which contains drain cleaner – you run the risk of splash-back and severe chemical burns.
  • If you are not completely confident in your ability to use these products, then don’t attempt it.
  • You can always give us a call 24 hours a day for some free advice.
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