Why are my drains so slow? Plumbing issues that can mean bigger problems #6

October 27, 2021
Slow Draining Pipes Equals Bigger Problems

Why Are My Drains So Slow?

A Simple Fix, Or a Serious Problem
A slow drain is an issue that tends to creep up on you over time. Unless you have a major clog that is completely stopping the flow of water through the pipe, a drain will usually develop a problem over the course of a few weeks or even months. A lot of homeowners choose to ignore a slow drain because they’re still able to utilize their sink or tub. Eventually, you could be faced with a drain that’s backing up. There’s no ignoring the problem at that point.

What could be causing your drain to slow down? There are a number of reasons why you might be experiencing this problem, and there may be a simple fix that will take care of the issue. However, a more serious problem could be present that will require a bit more work.

A Clog in Your Bathroom Sink, Tub or Shower
Over the course of a day, there are a lot of things that go down our drains in the bathroom. You have soap, dirt, grime, toothpaste, shaving cream, hair and much more going down all of these drain areas. You could have something as simple as an accumulation of hair around the initial opening of the drain. This is often something that a homeowner can fix on their own. You could also have a buildup of soap scum or mineral deposits that would need to be cleaned out in order for a proper flow of water to go through your drain again.

Your toilet can experience a clog or a slow drain as well. You’re flushing waste materials, toilet paper and maybe other things like tissues down there. If you flush too much at once, this can cause a clog or a partial clog. Try to stay away from flushing things like baby wipes, cat litter and feminine hygiene products if you want to prevent a slow draining process.

Slow Drains in Your Kitchen Sink or Dishwasher
Even if you have a garbage disposal in your sink, there’s a lot going down your kitchen drain each day. Food solids can build up over time and cause a slow drain. You could also be pouring too many oily or greasy substances down your drain like oils and grease. These things act like glue in many cases, causing a buildup.

Laundry Room Drain
The drain hose that is hooked up to your washing machine can become clogged with lint, hair and other small items that may be attached to your clothing when you load them up to get cleaned. You may have fibers and other items clinging together, resulting in a slow drain.

Fixing a Slow Drain
The cause of your slow drain will determine what kind of work needs to be done in order to rectify the problem. For instance, you may be able to screw off the bathroom sink stopper to see if there’s a visible accumulation of hair or debris. If you can reach the mess, cleaning it out may immediately fix the problem. If you can’t see anything that might be causing the slow draining process, the problem could exist much further down the drain. A professional can use a waterproof electric plumbing camera to see further down than the naked eye can see.

Avoiding Harsh Chemicals
Unfortunately, a lot of people think that dumping a large container of drain cleaner down their drain is going to fix the issue. While these products can sometimes break up the clog, they can also cause permanent damage to your plumbing. It’s best to let a professional determine if they can access the problem to manually clean everything. An auger or water jet can be very effective in most cases.

Addressing Multiple Slow Drains
You may notice that there are multiple drains in your home that are experiencing a slow drain time. These issues may not be related, but there is a chance that you have a bigger problem going on inside of the home. Your main sewer line or septic system could be experiencing problems, and this is a more major problem that a professional should address in a timely manner. You absolutely want to avoid having your sewer line back up into your home. This is a major undertaking to repair, not to mention a health risk to you and anyone living in your home.

Contact Us
It’s always a good idea to have a plumbing issue of any sort assessed by a professional as soon as you notice that there’s something going on that doesn’t seem quite right. American Service Company can figure out what the problem is, we’ll take care of the issue and we’ll determine if there is any permanent damage that has taken place because of what’s being going on. Give us a call at 804-739-4094 for more information, or you can Send Us a Message.