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Drains are an important part of our home and they are often neglected in terms of maintenance. They do the job, so we simply don’t focus on cleaning them. We usually acknowledge them when we notice that the water is flowing away pretty slowly. And then we’re in a pickle! In order to prevent this from happening, take a look at these DIY tips for drain cleaning and maintenance as well as for cleaning the blocked drains. 

1. How to maintain drains properly

Maintaining your drain requires a few steps to take regularly. First of all, you should mind the temperature of the water. Why is this crucial? Hot water can break up grease deposits that are lingering in your drain system. So, make sure you run hot water at least once a week. However, hot water is not always the solution. For example, when you run your disposal, you should run the cold water as hot water can cause grease to melt and stick to the drains, coating them. Cold water, on the other hand, will help keep the grease in one piece and it will allow the disposal to break it down. You should also use a drain trap that will prevent some substances such as soap scum, crumbs, and hair from being stuck in the drain. It is also advisable to clean your drains preventively with baking soda, vinegar and hot water once in a while. 

2. How to get rid of smelly drains

Because of all the stuff that gets stuck in your drains, they can develop a bad smell. And even though some chemicals unclog the drains efficiently, they are not so efficient in getting rid of the bad smell. The good news is that you don’t need any expensive chemicals to solve this problem. You simply need citrus. What you’re going to do is to put lemon rinds in your disposal and run it. It helps in de-greasing your drains and freshening it up. How does this work? Well, citric acid has the ability to naturally cut through the grease as well as food residue, leaving your drain clean, grease-free and freshly smelling. 

3. What substances to keep away from your drains

When it comes to some substances that can easily get into our drains, some of them can cause big problems and we should be careful when dealing with them. You can prevent clogs if you mind the following substances and put them into the garbage instead of the sink and eventually drain. Food leftovers or parts such as eggshells, coffee grounds and fruit peels in the sink are a sure way to clog the drains. Also, things such as cleaning products, medications, paper towels, napkins and produce stickers, can do the same damage. That’s why you should keep them away from your sink and drains and put them straight into the garbage. Disposals have difficulties when it comes to breaking these substances down and they can easily cause major clogs.

4. How to clean a clogged drain: baking soda and vinegar

However, if you’re not careful enough, you’ll have to deal with blocked drains cleaning. And there are some efficient ways to do that. The solution for many in-home problems – baking soda and vinegar. This powerful mixture can also be used in de-clogging your drains as well, as it has the ability to break down grease, food residue, and soap build-up into simpler substances that can be more easily flushed down the drain. You should start by pouring half a cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar into your drain. Then you should cover it with a towel and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. You can repeat the process until your drain is clean.

5. How to clean a clogged drain: coffee grounds

A good way to prevent clogging is to use coffee grounds. From time to time pour some used coffee grounds into the drain. The coffee acids will break down the grease and they will dislodge the buildup. This trick works even without the garbage disposal. 

When it comes to drains, it’s better to take regular care of them than to get stuck with a clogged drain that can only be de-clogged by a professional. You’ll waste precious time, effort and money. So, instead of waiting for your drains to clog, take the preventative steps mentioned above. 

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