How To Unblock a Drain Yourself

Unblock Your Drain Without Calling a Plumber

How To Unblock a Drain Yourself - 1st Plumbers East Kilbride

How To Unblock a Drain Yourself

Here are some simple tips and tricks from the professional plumbers on how to unblock a drain yourself at home or in the office without calling out a plumber.

Nobody wants to deal with a blocked drain but they are very simple to prevent and often easy to deal with if you have some basic plumbing skills which we will teach you here.

How Do Drains Get Blocked?

Most drains are blocked because of what people are putting down the drain in the first place. 95% of blocked drains can be prevented with some simple practices on using your sinks, baths, showers, dish washers.

The golden rule is what goes down often stays there. If you are pouring fats down the sink or letting scrap food get washed down the sink then often they will stay in the pipes and over time this build up beings to narrow the pipe allowing less water to flow until eventually it gets completely blocked. 

This is also true for bath and shower drains. It is mostly hair which causes the problems here again building up over time until the blocked drain stops allowing water to flow through it.

So the number 1 rule is to prevent what is going down the drain in the first place. Prevent putting anything down the drain except for the water which should be flowing. Put food scraps in the bin. Pour fats into an old food can or bottle and let it solidify before putting that in the bin.

Buy a shower drain guard. For a few pounds you can save yourself from having to unblock the shower yourself or having to call in a plumber when the problem gets worse further down the line.

Showers can also be blocked due to a build-up of dirt, minerals and soap scum, which over time can start clogging the pipes.

How to Notice Your Drain Getting Blocked?

There are 2 types of blockage. A complete blockage and a partial blockage.

A complete blockage is the worst situation where no water can pass in either direction so a backflow of water can be seen building up. In a partial blockage, some water can still pass through but this is limited and usually being more and more restricted as the blockage builds up.

In a partial blockage, often forcing water through the drain or pipe can start to disperse the blockage allowing more water to pass which then helps clear the blocked area.

If you can see the blocked area, then get your fingers in there (assuming that it is not broken glass causing the blocked drain) and try to physically clear the blocked drain.

However, often the blockage is caused further down in the pipe rather than at the drain.

Once you notice these symptoms of a blocked drain, you should try to clear it as soon as possible before a build up starts. The longer you leave the problem, the worst it gets.



Try Pouring a Kettle of Boiling Water Down the Drain.

The boiling water helps wash away fats, soap or grease that has built up in your drain. Just be careful to protect yourself and wear gloves and protective glasses when doing this. Pouring boiling water from height uses mechanical force to try and dislodge the blockage and the hot water helps to melt it away. Just make sure that if there is too much splash back then you should lower the height of the kettle so that you are not being burned in the process.



Use Baking Soda and Vinegar

Pour half a cup of baking soda down the drain. Then pour in half a cup of vinegar.

The alkaline baking soda mixed with the acidic vinegar will cause a chemical reaction and begin to fizz immediately. This chemical reaction of the baking soda and vinegar should break down any hair, fats,  grease and soap scum residing in the pipes. Let this sit for 30-65 minutes before washing it away with boiling hot water.



Get Out Your Plunger.

Every home should have a plunger to hand. These are very cheap and effective ways to clear a blocked drain

However, a plunger  won’t work well if the blockage is mainly due to hair or is further down the pipe.

To use a plunger, make sure that there is a small pool of water underneath the plunger then cause an air tight seal and being plunging continuously and firmly. This action causes the water to be forced into the blockage and will hopefully remove it.



Look Out Your Drain Snake

You can also use a metal coat hanger and improvise.

Manually scrape out the blocked area.

If you don’t have a drain snake then you can use a metal coat hanger and uncoil it  so that you can get it down the drain as far as possible.

Take off the drain cover if you can. Get a torch and look down the drain as far as you can to see if you can physically see the affected area

If you can’t reach the blockage with your hands, use your drain snake or metal coat hanger to try and scrape out the hair or debris that is causing the problem.



Call in a Professional Plumber

If all else fails, it’s time to call in a professional plumber.

We have all sorts of machines, and apparatus from water jets to industrial chemicals to clean out blocked drains

If you have blocked drain in East Kilbride which you can’t clear yourself, give us a call 24 hours a day, every day on (01355) 202656.



24 Hour Emergency Service

No Call Out Charges

Free Inspection and Assessments

Local Plumbers and Gas Safe Heating Engineers

Affordable Pricing

Excellent Customer Service

Qualified, Skilled and Insured operatives

One Stop Shop for all your Plumbing and Heating

How It Works

1st Plumbers are the local plumbers of choice in East Kilbride. Our Emergency Plumbers in East Kilbride are available 24 hours a day, every day and we will be at your doorstep withint the hour, anytime day or night.

Nobody wants a plumbing emergency at any time but you are in safe hands when you are dealing with the local Emergency Plumbers in East Kilbride.

Give us a call on (01355) 202656 for any Plumbing and Heating emergency

Do you still come out during Covid-19?

Our 24 Hour Emergency Plumbing Service is still very much active during Covid-19. If you give us a call at any time night or day, our friendly staff will help advise you of the situation. If it is deemed an Emergency, then we will send out a Plumber or Heating Engineer to attend and resolve the problem. 

It may be that the emergency can be averted by a small action such as turning the water off and one of our local plumbers can then come out during the daytime and have a look at the problem without there being a big emergency. 

Either way, you are in safe hands and one phone call does it all. 

Give us a call today to discuss your Emergency Plumbing problem and we will advise you accordingly.

Do 1st Plumbers East Kilbride protect their staff and customers during covid-19?

1st Plumbers East Kilbride are doing everything reasonably possible to protect their staff and customers while still ensuring our excellent customer care and service. 

Our staff are equipped with:

– New latex gloves for every new job.

– Masks to prevent any spread through breathing/coughing.

– Enhanced cleaning rituals and disinfecting throughout the day of all customer and staff spaces (including vans and tools).

– Hand sanitizer is to be used before every job and frequently throughout the job and again at the end.

– Staff are told to stay at home if they show any signs of any symptoms.

– Minimal contact with all customers (and completely avoided if possible) is employed by informing our customers of arrival times so that they can be in a separate are away from where the work is due to be taking place

– Our plumbers will refrain from from shaking hands or taking cash transactions. Where possible, all transactions will be done electronically.

What are your normal working hours?

1st Plumbers East Kilbride operate 24 hours a day, every day to ensure that your Plumbing Emergency is looked at within the hour.

Our offices are open during normal business hours but our phone is always on and will be directed to the out of hours team on duty if you are to call in the evening or weekend. 

What services do you provide?

1st Plumbers East Kilbride are a one stop shop for all your Plumbing and Heating needs within the East Kilbride area.

We deal with all aspects of plumbing from leak detection, pipe repair, tap replacement, shower installs.

We deal with drain cleaning and unblocking drains, gutters and downpipes. Clearing sinks, showers, bath tubs and toilets. Unblocking waste disposal units, clrearing out and repairing dish washers and washing machines. 

We deal with boiler repairs, boiler replacements, boiler services and boiler installations as well as central heating repairs and installations. 

We also have tilers, electricians, joiners and anybody you need to get the job done so that with one phone call to 1st Plumbers East Kilbride you can rest assured that you are in good hands and we can attend to all your Plumbing and Heating needs. 

Do you Provide Emergency Plumbers East Kilbride?

Call the favourite Emergency Plumber East Kilbride on (01355) 202656. We offer a 24 hour emergency service every day of the year. 

Does 1st Plumbers East Kilbride deal with Boilers?

We are Heating Specialists meaning that not only do we deal with leak detection, diagnostics and all your plumbing faults but we specialise in Boiler repairs, Boiler Installations and Boiler Replacements as well as Boiler Services. We also deal with all Cebtral Heating problems including radiator repairs and installation, power flushing and gas safety checks but also gas fires, gas hobs, gas ovens, open fire and chimney inspections. 


1st Plumbers East Kilbride - Vintage Wet Room
1st Plumbers East Kilbride - Black and White Bathroom
1st Plumbers East Kilbride - Old School Radiators

Happy Customsers

Thank you guys for doing a great job. I was panicking so much when we came home to the flooding that I didn’t know what to do. Your plumber, Martin was exceptionally helpful not only in stopping any further damage and preventing the water leak but he was also able to remove a lot of the water with some sort of re-direction of the pipe system. That’s when we knew that we had a professional at hand. 

We can’t thank you enough and my 6 year old son now wants to be a plumber too so that he can help other people. I’ll let him know where to get his training!

Leanne McIntyre- St Leonards

Please send our thanks on to everybody at 1st Plumbers for their help. You have all been great in dealing with us. 

Terry and Dominic Hughes – Stewartfield

A reccomendation from our son in law led us to 1st Plumbers in East Kilbride and I can only say that I was very impressed and will also go on to reccomend them to friends or family looking for a plumber in East Kilbride.

David and Teresa – The Village E.K.

Good Job. Thank you for all your hard work. The new bathroom looks great now just as you planned.

Caroline – Whitehills

1st Plumbers were punctual, carried out the work and tidied up after themselves. 5 stars.


Loving the new hot and cold outdoor taps. Hot tub ready. Roll on the summer…

Chris – Lindsayfield

1st Plumbers East Kilbride repaired our boiler a few years ago and have now serviced our boiler every year since. Glad to say that it is still going strong.

The heating engineers are very knowledgeable, polite and friendly so it’s definitely not a chore to see them every year.

Andrew and Gemma – Westwood, East Kilbride

Licensed & INsured

Plumbers East Kilbride -GASSAFE_Logo
Plumbers East Kilbride - APHC logo
Plumbers East Kilbride -Ciphe Logo
Plumbers East Kilbride -Snipef Logo
Plumbers East Kilbride -Water Safe Logo

Schedule An Appointment
Or Get an Instant Quote

Call Now