How Commercial Drain Cleaners Work

March 13, 2018 Posted By Matt O'Brien

Caustic drain cleaners

A clogged drain is a plumbing problem that most homeowners have to face at one point or another. More often than not, homeowners deal with a clogged drain by pouring entire bottles of commercial drain cleaners down it. So how exactly do these commercial drain cleaners work to remove clogs? Let’s take a closer look at these commercial drain cleaners, which can be broken down into three basic types: caustic, oxidizing and acid.

Caustic Drain Cleaners

Lye and caustic potash make up two of the most potent ingredients of caustic drain cleaners. Being bases, they clear whatever clogging substance there is by bombarding it with electrons. Heat is then released by the other chemical ingredients of the caustic drain cleaner. This heat is hot enough to dissolve clogs into a soap-like substance that’s easily dissolved. As caustic drain cleaners are heavier than water, they can reach any clog even if it’s underneath a few inches of standing water.

Oxidising Drain Cleaners

Oxidizing drain cleaners are often made up of substances such as bleach, peroxides, and nitrates. These very same substances are also responsible for causing the organic component of any clog to lose electrons. When that happens, the clog becomes oxidized and therefore easier to clear out. Like caustic drain cleaners, getting to the clog through several inches of standing water is not a problem for oxidizing drain cleaners because they are also heavier than water.

Acid Drain Cleaners

When you buy an acid drain cleaner, you get exactly what you paid for: considerable amounts of hydrochloric or sulfuric acids. It works by increasing hydronium ions, a process which will remove electrons away from a clog. These ions will then react with the clog material, releasing heat that would soften or melt the clog itself.

The Problem with Commercial Drain Cleaners

With the reactions that these commercial drain cleaners produce, you already have a fairly good idea how strong they are to cause more than just the breakup of a clog. Those reactions can also damage pipes, old and new ones both.

Even more cause for concern is the health hazard posed by commercial drain cleaners. You can burn your skin, eyes and mucous membranes with the slightest of contacts. Worse is if they get accidentally swallowed by children in the household since they are highly toxic.

With all these issues that come with commercial drain cleaners, the best thing you can do is avoid using them altogether in case you have a clogged drain. You can either make your own natural drain cleaner that contain none of the toxic substances found in commercial drain cleaners, or you can just call on a professional plumber to clear a clogged drain for you. With the help of a plumbing professional from Beez Neez Plumbing, your clogged drain will get proper troubleshooting and treatment that will help you avoid all kinds of complications later on. Just pick up the phone and call us, and we’d be more than happy to send you our best men.

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