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A woman wearing gloves while plunging a clogged kitchen sink.

How to Clean Drains Without Drain Cleaner

The drains in your home can fall victim to stubborn blockages at any time — for several reasons. For example, bathroom sinks can become clogged with hair and soap scum, while kitchen sinks are prone to food particles and grease buildup.


No matter how you look at it, removing clogged drains is a real chore. That’s why so many homeowners opt to use a chemical drain cleaner. Unfortunately, the chemical drain cleaning products you find in stores can cause more harm than good.


The excellent news is that you can learn how to clean drains without drain cleaners! Many drain cleaning methods can help remove those stubborn blockages without damaging your pipes in the process.

Is Drain Cleaner Bad for Pipes?

Now, you might wonder, can chemical drain cleaners damage your pipes? Unfortunately, the answer to this question is yes. Many of these products contain harsh, toxic chemicals that will eat through your pipes. It’s also worth mentioning that chemical drain cleaners can damage your garbage disposal and septic system.


The more you use a chemical drain cleaner, the more likely it is to cause harm to your plumbing system. Fortunately, we’re here to discuss how to clear a clogged drain without chemicals, so you can enjoy a freely-flowing drain without worrying about potential damage. Let’s discuss some of the best methods below!

Plunge Away the Clog

You can use a cup plunger to unclog a drain in your kitchen or bathroom. However, before you start, you’ll want to ensure that there is a small amount of water in the sink. The water should cover the cup of the plunger, as this will help create a tight seal around the drain. If there’s too much water in the sink, remove it with a cup or small bucket.


Using a cup plunger is pretty easy — there isn’t much to it! You need to quickly plunge up and down for about 30 seconds or until you feel the drain clear. If water starts draining like normal in the sink, you’ll know you’ve successfully removed the blockage.


Although a plunger can be an excellent way to clear a clogged drain without chemicals, there are still a few safety precautions you should take. For example, you should consider wearing eye protection and gloves in the event that water splashes out of the sink.

Consider the Benefits of a Drain Snake

When learning how to clean drains without drain cleaner, don’t overlook the potential benefits of a drain snake. Drain snakes are common plumbing devices that can be excellent alternatives to wire hangers. If you aren’t careful, wire hangers can damage your pipes — and you certainly don’t want that to happen!


Drain snakes have a few critical components: a handle, crank, cable, and spring. When you crank the handle, the cable will be lowered into the clogged drain. You’ll know that the cable has reached the clog when you feel resistance. At this point, the spring (which is attached to the head of the cable) will wrap around the clog. As you pull the cable back out of the drain, the debris clogging your sink should come with it.

Create Your Own Drain Cleaner

If you’re still wondering how to clear a clogged drain without chemicals, this next method might appeal to you. Yes, we’re talking about making your own homemade drain cleaner!


There are many DIY drain cleaners that you can make with everyday ingredients, each of them effective in its own way. Plus, these solutions don’t contain any harsh chemicals that will damage your plumbing system.


One of the most popular homemade drain cleaners contains equal parts baking soda and vinegar. Pour ½ cup of vinegar and ½ cup of baking soda into the drain, then let it sit for a few hours. Then, slowly pour a pot of boiling water down the drain. But be careful, so you don’t accidentally burn yourself in the process. At this point, you can check to see if you’ve removed the blockage by running some water from the tap. If the water flows normally, then you know you were successful.

Schedule a Professional Drain Cleaning

Although it can be helpful to know how to clean drains without drain cleaners, you might find that your drain clog is too stubborn for a DIY drain cleaner or plunger. If this is the case, don’t hesitate to schedule a professional drain cleaning service with your local plumbing company.


During a drain cleaning, your plumber will utilize state-of-the-art technology and industry-leading methods to quickly remove the blockage. Plus, some methods like hydro jetting can be used to thoroughly clean drains, which can help prevent blockages from forming in the future.


If you’re struggling to remove a blockage yourself, a professional drain cleaning in Houston, TX, might be the best solution.

Clear Clogged Drains With Aberle Plumbing!

Now that you’ve gone through this guide, we hope you better understand how to clean drains without drain cleaners! As you can see, chemical drain cleaning products aren’t the be-all-end-all solution to stubborn clogs.

It’s no secret that drain blockages can come in all shapes and sizes. Your sink drains can make it impossible to wash your dishes, while a tub drain can make your daily routine grind to a halt. To clear a clogged drain without chemicals, turn to Aberle Plumbing. We offer everything from drain cleaning services to garbage disposal repair in Houston, TX, and beyond.

If you’re ready to start, contact us today to schedule an appointment!