I found that Liquid Plumber Gel works the best when rinsed with boiling water (bring water to a boil on stove). You may need to repeat, but it works awesome. Then as a maintenance use you baking soda and vinegar.
By dflora01 from Green Bay, WI
All drain cleaners are pretty much sodium hydroxide. If you know this, you can buy the chemical at quite a savings. It's a very caustic chemical, with a Ph of about 13.00 or so. I've used it to unclog drains for over 25 years. Buy the cheapest grade, pour about 1 cup of the flakes or whatever form it's in, down a warm drain. Then follow with more hot water. Do not try this on completely clogged drains. The plumber will not appreciate it, but when they start to run slowly, I let them drain overnight, then in the morning, put a bucket under the tap where it's clogged. Run till you have very hot water, then let some run down the drain, to warm up the pipes, then pour in the sodium hydroxide & follow with more hot water till the s. hydrox. is completely down in the pipes.
Don't run too much water. You will hear it in the drain, it really bubbles. Make sure the area is well ventilated & you might want to use a medical mask. You don't want to breathe this stuff. For me, it usually happens in the tub. So I open the window & keep the door closed while I do this. It only takes a minute or so, so I do it fast & leave for about 15-20 mins. Come back & flush the drain with a lot of hot water. It eats everything. It may sound complicated, but after the first time, it's a snap. I also wear gloves for handling it. If you get any on your skin, even the fine dust, rinse with lots of cold water when you are done.
When you buy drano or liquid plumber, you are paying for them to bottle it & package it, because the chemical itself is very cheap. 5lbs. is not a lot, so get more than that & keep it in a very tightly closed container. It's really hydroscopic & will become rock hard from the moisture in the air. Then you won't be able to use it when you need it.
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