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7 Natural Drain Cleaning Techniques

May 30, 2023 | Blog

Blocked drains are a common household issue that can cause inconvenience and even damage to your plumbing system. While chemical drain cleaners can be effective, they can also be harmful to the environment and your health.

These harsh chemicals can cause water pollution, harm aquatic life and contribute to the degradation of ecosystems. When poured down drains, they can corrode pipes, leading to leaks and costly repairs. The toxic ingredients in these cleaners can also cause skin and eye irritation, respiratory issues and pose health risks if mishandled.

Fortunately, there are several natural drain cleaning techniques that you can use to unclog your drains without using harsh chemicals. Our team at Southern Air Heating, Cooling & Plumbing compiled a list that discusses seven natural drain cleaning techniques you can try. Read on to learn more!

Take Care Of Your Drain (DIY Style!)

Natural drain cleaning techniques can be just as effective as chemical cleaners, without the harmful effects. Try these seven techniques to clear clogs in your drain, and always remember to practice good drain maintenance to prevent future clogs.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

This classic combination is a simple and effective way to unclog drains. First, pour a cup of baking soda into the drain, followed by a cup of vinegar. Let the mixture sit for 15-30 minutes, then pour hot water down the drain to flush it out.

Boiling Water

Boiling water can be an effective solution for minor clogs in your drains. To use this method, start by boiling a pot of water. Once it reaches a rolling boil, carefully pour it down the drain in stages, ensuring that you pour it slowly to prevent any potential damage to your pipes.

This method is particularly useful for organic matter or soap scum buildup. However, it may not be effective for more stubborn clogs or blockages caused by non-organic materials. Exercise caution and assess the severity of the clog before attempting this method.

Salt and Baking Soda

Salt and baking soda can be combined to create a powerful and natural solution for tackling clogs in your drains. This mixture helps break down grease, grime, and odors that may be causing the blockage. To use this method, mix 1/2 cup of salt with 1/2 cup of baking soda in a bowl. Once the mixture is well combined, carefully pour it down the drain. Allow it to sit for several hours, or even overnight, to give it enough time to work its magic.

During this time, the salt and baking soda will help dissolve the buildup and neutralize any unpleasant odors. After the designated time has passed, flush the drain with hot water to wash away the loosened debris.

Lemon Juice and Baking Soda

Combining lemon juice with baking soda creates a natural solution that can effectively tackle clogs and eliminate unpleasant odors from your drains. To utilize this method, mix 1/2 cup of lemon juice with 1/2 cup of baking soda in a bowl, creating a fizzy reaction. The mixture will begin to bubble, helping to break down grease, grime, and residue within the drain.

Carefully pour the mixture down the drain and let it sit for about 30 minutes to an hour. After this time, send hot water down the drain to wash away any remains and to ensure a clear pathway.


A plunger is a simple yet effective tool for clearing clogs in sinks, toilets and drains. Its design allows for creating a vacuum seal over the drain, enabling forceful plunging motions to dislodge and break up the obstruction. By pushing and pulling the plunger rapidly, you can generate pressure that helps to dislodge the clog and restore proper water flow.

Wire Hanger

In situations where clogs are within reach, using a wire hanger can be an effective DIY method to physically remove the blockage. Straighten a wire hanger and bend one end into a hook. Insert the hook into the drain and try to hook the clog and pull it out.

It’s important to exercise caution and avoid pushing the clog further down the drain, as this may worsen the blockage or damage the pipes. If you encounter resistance or cannot successfully remove the clog, it’s recommended to stop attempting this method to prevent potential complications.

Enzyme Cleaners

Enzymes are specialized proteins that act as catalysts in chemical reactions, facilitating the breakdown of complex substances into simpler components. In the context of drain cleaning, enzyme cleaners contain specific enzymes that target and break down organic matter like grease, food particles, and soap scum.

To utilize enzyme cleaners, pour the recommended amount down the drain and allow it to sit for several hours or overnight. You can simply flush the drain with hot water to rinse away the loosened residue.

Schedule Your Next Service With Southern Air Heating, Cooling & Plumbing!

Don’t let a clogged drain disrupt your daily routine — let Southern Air Heating, Cooling, & Plumbing take care of it for you! We’re here to help with our expert drain cleaning services. Our experienced technicians use safe, effective and environmentally friendly methods to unclog your drains and keep your plumbing system running smoothly.

Contact us today to schedule your drain cleaning appointment and take advantage of our exceptional customer service, competitive pricing and ironclad guarantees.

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