If you've never called a plumber to come clean the drains in your home or business, it can be nerve-wracking to do so for the first time. Not only are you scared of what they may find, but you may not be aware of what's all involved and what kind of things you can do to prepare accordingly.
Fear not though, because a drain cleaning service is one of the more painless plumbing services you can hire. It's still a good idea to know what to expect going in though, so here is a quick look at the process.
When the contractors arrive on site, they do a quick assessment of the situation at hand. If there's one drain that is backing up, the problem is normally located to just that one area. Multiple drains that are clogged however, indicate that the problem may involve the main water and sewer lines. Usually the plumbing technician will stick a snake into the drain to determine where the blockage is, but if they can't get to it, they'll use a snake with a light and a camera on the end to go deeper into the drain.
Once they've located the clog, they'll determine the cause; in many cases, hard water is to blame. The mineral and sediment deposits that can stick on the walls and accumulate over time act as little sponges that collect every bit of debris that flows by it. Other times, it may be something that is directly thrown into the drain, such as hair and soap scum (for the bathroom), or even grease and chicken bones if the clogged drain is in the kitchen. Understanding what the clog consists of will go a long way in determining the best approach to removing the clog.
Depending on how deep the clog is, your plumber may recommend a variety of services. They may be able to simply dislodge the clog and force it down the sewer drain, or they might recommend more thorough cleaning, like hydro jetting. Instead of simply punching a hole through the clog, hydro jetting shoots high-pressure water into the pipes to not only clean the pipes, but also scrub the edges. This form of drain cleaning is much more complete, since it not only clears the drain but also prevents further blockages from forming. Once the clog is clear, your drain cleaning service is over and the plumber will be on their way!