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You don't need a plumber: how to clean your shower drain and get rid of the stench

Alina MilsentLifestyle
How to clean the drain in the shower. Source: Created with the help of AI

A clogged shower drain is a common problem. Excessive soap suds, long hair, or even mold can quickly clog the pipes, causing an unpleasant odor.

Fortunately, most problems are easy to solve. Experts have told us what improvised means will help you get rid of the trouble and save money by not calling a plumber.

How often to clean the shower drain

The drain pipe should be cleaned at least monthly to remove hair and soap scum. Clogs can be unclogged with a drain snake, store-bought products, or household solutions containing baking soda, distilled white vinegar, or chlorine bleach.

Important warning: mixing chlorine bleach and vinegar can create a toxic gas.

How to use the drain snake

If the clog is a mass of soap scum covered hair that just won't move, you'll need a drain snake.

  1. It is very easy to use: simply remove the drain cover and then push the snake into the pipe. When you start to feel resistance, you've hit a blockage. Do not pull the snake out yet. Keep rotating it to clear the blockage.
  2. When you stop feeling resistance, slowly pull the snake out and remove the dirt. Run the shower at full power for a few minutes to make sure everything is clean.

Special products

Most drain cleaners are alkaline-based and use sodium hydroxide and other chemicals to create heat to help dissolve clogs.

It is important to follow the directions carefully. Most cleaning products are caustic, so protective equipment is strongly recommended.

How to clean a clog with baking soda and vinegar

Although baking soda and vinegar do not remove hair plugs, they are effective in cutting through the soap suds that slow down the water drainage.

  • Heat about 4 cups of water in a kettle, then carefully pour it down the drain. If you have PVC pipes, use hot tap water rather than boiling water.
  • Add a cup of baking soda to the drain, followed by a cup of distilled white vinegar. A chemical reaction will occur.
  • Let the mixture sit for at least 10 minutes, then flush with hot water.

How to get rid of odors

Sewer odors are caused by sewage, bacteria, or mold. Odors can also come from soap scum that builds up in the pipes. Scale and dark, damp conditions are the perfect breeding ground for odor-causing bacteria and mold. Cleaning your shower regularly will save you all the trouble.

  • Remove the drain cover. Clean it thoroughly with hot water and all-purpose detergent. If necessary, scrub with an old toothbrush.
  • Add a glass of baking soda and a glass of vinegar to the drain.
  • Wait at least 10 minutes and flush the drain.

To kill mold:

  • Remove the drain cover and leave it in water with 2 teaspoons of chlorine bleach for 10 minutes.
  • Clean the drainage. You will need 2 cups of hot water and 1/2 cup of liquid chlorine bleach. Pour the solution down the drain and let it sit for at least one hour.
  • Flush the drain. Pour more hot water down the drain.

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