Tag Archive for: drain clogs

Handling Apartment Drain Clogs Yourself

Handling Apartment Drain Clogs Yourself

One of the benefits of apartment living is that you have maintenance on hand to take care of large problems. If your heat goes out or you develop a leak it is often the landlord that is responsible for taking care of it. This is why they have maintenance staffs, and many apartment buildings have staff on site at least part of the day. One of the things you can take care of yourself is apartment drain clogs, however.

You don’t always need to call maintenance, however. There are some problems you can handle for yourself with just a little knowledge. A clogged drain is one of them. If your shower or bathroom sink is backing up you can often just take care of it yourself. Just make sure you don’t damage the fixtures.

Here are some tips on how to take care of drain clogs in your apartment.

Clean With Baking Soda

One of the best ways to take care of clogs is to prevent them in the first place. Cleaning with baking soda can do this. By pouring about half a cup of baking soda down the drain and waiting for it to bubble up it can both help clean and naturally deodorize drains. After letting it sit for 10 minutes pour hot water down the drain to clear it out. If you have a very tricky clog try adding a half cup of vinegar to the baking soda and letting it sit before running the hot water.


Plungers aren’t just for toilets. They can be quite effective on clogged drains as well. Apply a small amount of petroleum jelly to the rim of the plunger to help form a tight seal and place the rubber ball directly over the drain. Use quick and deliberate thrusts and it should help force the clog out.

Wire Hangers

Many times clogs in sink or bath drains are caused by a backup of hair. Fortunately, you don’t need a pipe snake or auger to clear it out. A simple wire hanger will often do. Use a screwdriver to remove the drain cover and straighten out a wire hanger. Leave a hook at the end and feed the wire to fish out any hair that you can. Pull out as much as possible before running hot water down the drain and replacing the cover.

These are just a few ways to take care of a clog yourself. There are other cleaners out there like Enzyme cleaners and power augers, but they run the risk of causing damage to the fixtures that your landlord might now appreciate. If the above methods don’t work it is probably time to call your maintenance staff. The good news is that they are effective and can often take care of the problem before calling anyone else.