A Drain Snake For Every Job

With every home maintenance project, there’s a tool for the job. Use the wrong tool and disaster might not be far away.

When it comes to maintaining the plumbing system within your home, the right tool often comes in the shape of a snake … a drain snake. When you have a clogged drain, nothing is better for the job.

But what size is best? Head to your local hardware store, and you’ll find drain snakes come in all shapes and sizes. Grabbing the wrong one for the job might not get the job done. It can also harm your pipes.

What is available?

Top Snake

The smallest of all drain snakes, the top snake is used for tubs, showers and bathroom sink clogs. Most top snakes will contain about 25 feet of cable. You’ll find them in both manual and automatic formats, and in a variety of shapes and sizes. These are great workers for small clogs that don’t have a lot of buildup.

Toilet Auger

A toilet auger is a drain snake specifically made for toilets. When your toilet clogs, most people reach for a plunger to attempt to fix it. But when stubborn clogs remain, the problem lies deeper than what a plunger can impact. A toilet auger should be placed into the toilet with the head of the cable inserted into the drain. You should only be able to see the housing, not the cable. Crank the auger to push the cable deeper into the drain, then reverse direction and repeat until it can go no further. Pull the snake out and flush to determine if the clog has been removed.

Medium Snake

A medium drain snake is used with a 3/8 inch cable and 50 to 75 feet of cable. These are great tools for cleaning out longer lines such as with a washing machine or a kitchen clog that may have wound deep into the drain. This snake should only be used on kitchen or bathroom sinks once the trap has been removed. You can also use them to clear lines from the roof vents. They are not intended for tubs or showers as the cable can easily break the trap underneath.

Large or Heavy Snakes

These are heavy duty drain snakes that come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Because they are designed for the toughest of clogs, the cable should be no smaller than 5/8 inch in size, with a minimum length of 75 to 100 feet in length. This snake is designed to clean out drains that are 3 inches or larger, which typically includes clean outs to the street. In many cases, the problem stems from landscaping roots; a strong, automated cable will provide enough power to get the job done.

Plumbing Service in Atlanta

Which snake is right for the job? They each have their own specific nuances. It’s best to play it safe and be well acquainted with a model before you attempt to use. If you have questions, contact a professional first.

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