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How to Unclog a Drain Like a Girl: Fixing Plumbing Problems in Style

Updated on August 31, 2011

Normally when you think of unclogging a sink, drain or bathtub you don't associate with it being a task for a woman. I mean those are manly duties right? Well sometimes you don't always have a man around to help with those kinds of things.

Especially if you're a single gal or single mother, you have to learn to be self sufficient and become the handy(wo)man if the occasion requires.

Finding the Right Product

First you need to identify how serious your clog is, whether it's a do it yourself project or if you need to call a professional.

Water that's slow moving or standing still is easily fixed with an inexpensive liquid clog remover. If the drain is completely clogged or blocked, then you can try a stronger method like a foam, snake duo or small tool.

Something as cheap as a wire hanger will work perfectly, or you can purchase a small tool made just for clearing blocked pipes.

If you have tried all the methods and the drain is still clogged you should contact an expert. They can usually fix the problem quickly and easily.

Use the graph below to determine the severity of your plumbing problem and find the correct solution.

standing water
slow running drain
blocked pipe
slow running drain
clogged or blocked pipe
tried all other methods

Safety First

After you have found the right method and product for the job, you can take action against that irritating clog. I suggest putting on rubber gloves before handling any kind of clog remover and make sure you're in a well ventilated area.

It's important to protect your skin and lungs from any harsh chemicals. You can even put on a cute apron to enhance the sexy housewives, but still strong and independent woman persona.

But if you don't use gloves or an apron, it's a good idea to wash your hands after using any clog removing products. Just in case any chemical residue is on your skin, you definitely don't want to get it in your eyes or mouth.


Getting Creative

Now you are ready to pour the product down the drain, following the instructions carefully of course.

Most products suggest waiting 15 minutes for lighter clogs and up to 30 minutes for more stubborn clogs.

After pouring the liquid or foam down the drain, set a timer for the approximate amount of time you think it will take.

Start off with a shorter time just to be safe and increase it if you need to. You can also repeat the steps if necessary.

Time to kick this plumbing job into gear like a girl by multi-tasking while you wait for the remover to work with some of these activities:

  • Do 20-30 minute workout DVD or yoga exercise
  • Put in a hair conditioning treatment
  • Paint your nails and toenails
  • Do a facial with a rejuvenating scrub or mask
  • Listen to music and move to the beat

Finishing with style

The last thing you have to do is finish the directions on the bottle, which normally requires flushing the drain with hot water for several minutes. This helps to get rid of any residue or leftover clog. Now, your pipes should be fixed and you can commence using your fixtures without any problems.

You can feel proud of yourself that you fixed your plumbing issue without any help, or if your problem is stubborn, you can call an expert with confidence. Not only did you successfully address your clogged drain, but you treated yourself to some much needed down time during the wait.

Now that's unclogging a drain like a girl, and with style!


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    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      The first thing that we usually do is to use a good old fashioned plunger. That generally brings up enough of the stuff to get the sink draining again. I think that baking soda and apple cider vinegar can sometimes act like those harsher chemicals...but in a greener fashion.

      Liked your suggestions of facials, etc. while waiting to see if the drain becomes unclogged. Now THAT is a good girly suggesion. Haha! Thanks for your lighthearted approach to a recurring problem that all of us occasionally have.

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 

      7 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      DEAR applecsmith . . .you are very welcome. I only speak from the heart. There is enough lip-service in our country to do a lifetime or two. And my dad would have loved to hang out with your dad. When I was a teenage guy, (what else could I be?) when my buds and I were just talking, loafing, the subject of fixing cars always, like clockwork, came up and they would spend hours discussing carburetor calibrations, valve ratios and other stuff that I was embarassed to ask what they were. I was a lonely teen. Thanks for all of the hard work that you do. KENNETH

    • applecsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Carrie Smith 

      7 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      wilderness - thanks for the tip. That will probably be a great tool for the bathroom sink as well as the tub!

      kenneth - I envy people that are natural fixers. When I was little I thought my dad could fix anything, and honestly he really could.

      Thanks for the comments!

    • kenneth avery profile image

      Kenneth Avery 

      7 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hi, applecsmith . . .GREAT read. Amazing info. Voted up and away for your sharing such a common problem not only for "persons,"///women, but men too. I admit it. I am not that knowledgable around sinks, pipes, hammers,nails, and such. MY dad wouldnt let me get near the manly-things when I WANTED to learn. I took him at his orders, "Stay away from here," and did just that. I admire people who ARE natural fixers. Fact is. I envy them. Love your work. Sincerely....KENNETH

    • wilderness profile image

      Dan Harmon 

      7 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      I can add just one suggestion to this - you've covered most of the bases already.

      Our bathtub drain clogs all the time with hair. I found a long slim piece of plastic at the home improvement store that is covered with small teeth. Stick it down the drain (it bends around the trap) and pull it back out. Presto! The hair snags on the little teeth and comes out with it. Works great for hair clogs, but that's probably about all it will do.

    • applecsmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Carrie Smith 

      7 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      tlpoague - That's another great way to handle plumbing problems, hire a professional, especially if you're a woman. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

      snakeslane - Very happy to see this post made you smile. I accomplished my goal!

      Thank you for the comments.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      7 years ago from Canada

      This is a lighthearted look at a serious topic, funny, made me smile.

    • tlpoague profile image


      7 years ago from USA

      Why is it that when something decides to go wrong, there is never a guy around? Just kidding! Of course being a single mom or one who's hubby/boyfriend isn't around much, it does help to know how to tackle a few manly jobs. I have found that I would rather spend the money harrassing a plumber, then trying to cram a snake down the drain. I love your tips for passing time while waiting or the Drano to kick in. Great hub! I enjoyed it!


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