Chemical Drain Cleaners What You Need To Know

Chemical Drain Cleaners What You Need To Know

When confronted with a blocked drain, Many homeowners have gone to the local hardware store and bought an off the shelf drain cleaning chemical product, thinking they are convenient and going to be cheaper than calling a plumber. But, are they thinking about the consequences that may arise from using these chemical products? Probably not, in the following article, I will explain why these items can be dangerous and even hazardous to your plumbing and also your health.


The three main types of chemical drain cleaning products that can be purchased by a homeowner at a local hardware store are: caustic, oxidising and acid. Caustic cleaners will contain lye which will release heat, to liquify and clear grease from drains. Oxidising cleaners will contain bleach and nitrates, causing organic matter to lose electrons and become oxidised. An experienced, licensed plumber should only purchase acid cleaners. They have a high amount of sulphuric or hydrochloric acid and when not handled properly, can be incredibly dangerous for the health of a person and the health of a homes plumbing pipes.

All of the above drain cleaning chemical solutions create an electron-transfer. The chemicals either remove or give electrons to the organic matter, creating heat that helps to dissolve and remove the blockage.


The chemicals in liquid drain cleaners can harm the water supply. Pouring chemicals designed to break down organic material into plumbing systems is neither healthy for us or the environment. What we put into our stormwater system has the potential to end up in our drinking water as well as local rivers or the ocean.


The Acid chemicals inside liquid drain cleaners can damage pipes in such a way that a drain can perforate and begin to leak, causing damage to surrounding infrastructure and a costly repair bill. The chemicals end up sitting in the pipe and start eating away at it. These acid chemicals release heat as they work to dissolve a blockage. A steel pipe that is in poor condition can quite quickly begin to leak and rust. Chemical drain cleaners can also soften PVC pipes.


Drain cleaner products are a powerful acid, designed to attack and eat away at the blockage to dissolve it and allow it to wash away. However, chances are this might not happen. On occasions, gravity intervenes, and the acid only attacks the bit of the blockage it can touch. Meaning, the majority of the time, the only thing that gets removed is scum in the bottom of your pipe.

Sometimes blocked drains are made up of a long sewage backup. A Liquid drain cleaner will not be powerful enough and sufficient to dissolve a substantial blockage full of raw sewerage. Professional drain cleaning plumbers with the right equipment and experience will be the only option for removing a considerable blockag


King Plumbing takes pride in being the trusted name for drain cleaning in Hobart Tasmania. Contact us today for more information.

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