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How do you unclog a drain when there’s standing water?

How do you unclog a drain when there’s standing water?

Slow or blocked drains can be unclogged without resorting to bleach or industrial cleaning methods; the most popular solution is hot water, vinegar and baking soda.

Blocked bathtubs and showers will often come accompanied with standing water – so to prevent this from becoming a bigger or ongoing issue, it’s time to deal with it today.

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1. Remove Standing Water

First things first, you need to remove the standing water before tackling the blockage itself. Use buckets or any suitable containers to remove the water – and don’t use your bath or shower until the blockage is cleared.

2. Check for Blockages

Now it’s time to unclog the drain. Check for any visible signs of blockage around the drain – such as hair – and remove them as best you can.


putting hand in drain


3. Clear the Drain

To clear the blockage further down the pipe, there are a few favoured, chemical-free solutions:

  • Baking soda, hot water and vinegar
  • Hot water
  • Hot water and washing up liquid



4. How to use baking soda and vinegar to unclog a drain

A) Pour a maximum of three cups of boiling water down your drain



B) Mix 1 cup of baking soda and 1 cup of vinegar, then pour that down your drain – quickly, before it fizzes too much

C) Let the mixture sit for some time – 10 minutes should be plenty. You can cover the drain with your plug to keep the reaction in the pipe



D) Pour three more cups of hot water down the drain to flush the solution. Your drain should be flowing faster now



5. How to use hot water to unclog your drain

If you don’t have any vinegar or baking soda to hand, you can use just Hot Water.

Pour hot water in shorts bursts, down the drain. This can help to unclog fat, oil and grease blockages – but be careful if your pipes are PVC, too much water at too high a temperature could damage them.


6. How to use hot water and washing up liquid to unclog a drain

Some people don’t believe that baking soda/vinegar helps that much. Mixing hot water and washing up liquid is a strong alternative. Follow the same steps outlined above, but instead of mixing vinegar and baking soda, simply mix a cup of hot water with some washing up liquid instead.

If you follow our steps, this should fix your issue and your drains should be unclogged!


Call in the Drainage experts

If you still haven’t had any luck with the methods above, it could be that you have a larger problem with your drain that you can’t see. If you suspect this is the case, take a look at our resource centre article on what to look out for if you think you have a blocked drain.

For professional advice and assistance, contact the experts at Express Clear who will be able to resolve your issue with either a CCTV drain survey, or our drain jetting services. Give us a call on 0800 294 2907 for a Free quote!


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