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About Drain Snaking Rooters And Sewer Snaking Augers
We have dealt with literally thousands of clogged sink, bathtub, sewer main, lateral and basement floor drains over the last fifteen years. We’ve seen many different causes for drain and pipe clogs, but the most common reasons include hair clogs, oil and grease, and tree roots. And in all of these cases, an effective and commonly utilized way to clear a stubborn blockage is by using a drain snake. Drain snaking, which is also referred to as a drain rooter, rodding or augers, has been used by plumbers to clear pipes of clogs for many years.
The drain snake auger was originally developed in the 1920s by a man named Samuel Oscar Blanc. He made the first sewer-cleaning machine by using a steel cable, some wheels from a roller skate, and a motor from a washing machine. Isn’t American ingenuity amazing? Until Mr. Blanc invented his drain rooter, plumbers had to dig up pipes in order to get rid of stubborn clogs. Now, thanks to his new plumbing snake, plumbers could cut out tree roots and other blockages from sewer lines without ever having to dig.
Blanc started selling his drain snake machines to the public, and a lot of businessmen bought themselves one during the Great Depression in order to start their own drain cleaning businesses, especially in the midwest and northeast where the biggest drain clog problems were persistent.
The drain plumbing snake auger is basically a corkscrew-shaped auger attached at the end of a bendable metal cable. Most drain snakes nowadays are operated by electricity, but there are some that can be powered by hand as well. The drain snake auger rotates in the clogged drain until it hits the obstruction, at which point the corkscrew will scrape away the clog.
The Different Types Of Drain Snakes
Today, plumbing snakes come in many different shapes and sizes, depending upon what type of use or drain they are designed for. There are home drain snake rooters, which are smaller and simpler to use, all the way up to huge commercial-sized drain snaking machines with thick cables and large augers to cut through tougher clogs and obstructions.
The main and most important difference between between the smaller home drain snakes and the larger commercial drain rooters is the size of the cable that is attached to the auger. As you may have guessed, a commercial drain cleaning company uses a big auger and thicker cables that are rotated using a motor powered machine. We often are called on to clean main line sewer drains, which a bigger pipes that could have some serious blockages and clogs from tree roots and other obstructions. Our cables and large auger can reach further through your sewer drain and cut through blockages much easier than that home drain snake rooter.
If you have problems with tree roots clogging your sewer main line,we suggest that you have you drain cleaned by our industrial strength drain snake at least every couple of years, and preferably once a year. Unless you cut down the trees in your yard or replace your entire clay sewer line with a plastic PVC line, roots will continue to grow into your drains every year, and only annual drain snaking will keep them under control and keep your waste water flowing through the pipes properly.
Using A Home Drain Snake Rooter On Sink Clogs
Many homeowners also purchase themselves a smaller drain rooter snake for smaller clogs that they may experience in their sinks, bathtubs and kitchen, which can work just fine for those situations. But using a smaller home drain snake on a large sewer drain to remove tree roots may be a poor idea. It’s much safer and wiser to call a professional plumbing company to use our commercial drain snake on your main sewer lines instead. In many cases, however, using your home drain snake to remove clogs can be safer than using harsh chemicals that could damage your pipes.
You can purchase an inexpensive hand-powered drain snake for your home as well, although these tend to be a bit less effective and harder to use than electric powered versions. There is even a drain snake rooter you can buy that hooks to your power drill, but you should never run your power drill at top speed when you are pushing the auger into your pipe. Instead of forcing the clog through the drain, try to catch it on the auger and slowly pull it back out of the drain. If you push the clog further into the drain, it could just become even more difficult to remove. And remember: snaking your drain can end up being a dirty job, so wear old clothes and have plenty of rags available to clean up when you’re done!