Unclogging a Drain with Baking Soda?

I am looking for the idea posted in the Reader's Digest on how to declog the bathtub drain. It mentioned baking soda and some other stuff and said it really worked.

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Barb from Greenwood, SC

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February 5, 20090 found this helpful
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I clean my coffee maker with vinegar, then use the hot vinegar and pour it into my bathtub drain where I have put 1/2 cup of baking soda. I clean two for the effort of one!

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February 6, 20090 found this helpful
Best Answer

I tried and failed to find the link, but there was a Reader's Digest article (October 2008) where a family went on a spending fast. The first big hurdle was sludge coming up in their tub.
You might not agree with this guy's solution, but as I recall, it involved Dawn dish liquid and a gallon or so of boiling water. I don't recall baking powder or baking soda.

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Editor's Note: Here it is: www.rd.com/.../article99718.html

From that article..."On a website called thriftyfun.com, thousands of users posted tip after penny-saving tip on conserving cash. There wasn't a crisis on earth, it seemed, that couldn't be averted with some combination of baking soda, white vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and a certain dishwashing liquid. I squirted a shot of Dawn in a kettle of boiling water, poured it into the shower, and the goop slrrrrged down the drain. Materials used: 10 cents. The look on Ruth's face after I actually fixed something: priceless."

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February 7, 20090 found this helpful
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Baking soda and vinegar react together to produce Carbon dioxide and salt water. They do create a vigorous bubbling effect, but this on its own doesn't do any cleaning, and I wouldn't call it explosive. It is also used by kids to create fake volcanoes for science class, and is absolutely benign. Baking soda on its own, with boiling water, could be a good drain cleaner as most clogs are grease, and baking soda, which is a base, reacts with grease to create soap.

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The hot water will speed this reaction up, dissolve the soda of course, and flush away the soap.

A bathroom drain may very likely be clogged with hair. Try removing the cover and seeing if that is the case. You can just pluck the wad of gucky hair out. If this is your clog, you will not do anything with baking soda or vinegar, alone or together. Drano, or some other brand, will get rid of it, but it is more effective to manually pluck it out.

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By (Guest Post)
February 3, 20090 found this helpful

It's baking soda followed by vinegar. It works on small plugs but I wouldn't put too much faith in it.

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February 5, 20090 found this helpful

Heat two cups of water to boiling temperature and then add 1/2 cup of room temperature white vinegar

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to the boiling water. pour one box of baking soda into the drain first, then pour the water and vinegar down the drain. Use two cups of boiling water every week to keep the drain open.

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February 5, 20090 found this helpful

VINEGAR and soda create and explosive cleaning product that is safe. Dump the soda in the drain first, followed by the vinegar.

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