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What's Clogging My Drains?

7 Things That Clog Drains Every Day

If a drain in your home is slowing down or clearly clogged, you might be wondering about what is clogging it. Did you put something down there you shouldn’t have? Or is there something else going on down there forming the clog?

The truth is there are a handful of common things that end up down sinks only to form a clog later. You probably didn’t do anything wrong, but a clog can form just the same due to these commonplace culprits.

Household, everyday things that clog drains are:

  • Hair: Unless everyone in your family is bald, it's very likely that stray hairs are being shed down your tub, shower, and bathroom sink drains each day. Hair catches can help stop the majority of hair from heading down drains, but there will always be a few strands that slip by. As time goes on, the hair may form a clump in the drain, gradually growing into a full-on clog.
  • Soap scum: The soap products you use as handwash, body wash, and even detergent for your dishes can all create soap scum as a byproduct of regular use. Just as with small strands of hair, tiny pieces of soap scum can get lodged into the joints of your drains, where the clog starts to form.
  • Food waste: You can use your garbage disposal to chew through food waste before washing it down the sink, but this doesn’t guarantee that the food waste is ground up enough to prevent a clog. If any big chunks of food end up down the drain, they could cause a clog eventually. This is especially true for foods that cause problems for drains, like sticky starches and stringy vegetables.
  • Mineral buildup: Is the city water in your home dense with minerals, like calcium and magnesium? Hard water can damage your pipes, but it can also clog your drains. The more you use city water, the more likely minerals in the hard water will stick to the pipes and begin to clog.
  • Toilet paper: While toilet paper is biodegradable and weakens rapidly in water, it does not dissolve immediately. Using too much toilet paper at once or in a short amount of time is a surefire way to cause a clog down the line.
  • Tree roots: Your home’s drains can be significantly damaged or clogged by intruding tree roots. If there are any large or old trees on your property and a drain becomes clogged without any clear reason, then tree roots might be the likely culprit.
  • Jewelry, toys, etc.: Dropping anything inorganic down a drain is also a fast way to form a bad clog. If you ever see a piece of jewelry, a toy, or anything else small fall down a drain, you should call (702) 710-4420 to get us over right away to retrieve it before it forms a worse clog later.