Sewer clogs can be pretty discomforting. Anything that blocks the flow of water or wastes out of your home or office building can only produce unpleasant experiences. This is why we recommend routine maintenance or cleaning of your drainage lines. This way, your drain lines remain free of clogs, and waste removal from your home remains seamless. 

Luckily, there are reliable drain cleaning options that you can use to remove stubborn clogs or clear out grease, root intrusions, and other common debris that typically clog drain pipes. In cases where the drains clog up, if the situation is not addressed immediately and allowed to linger, it could lead to more complicated situations, such as extremely foul odor, slow-moving drains, and sewer backup.

Common Drain Cleaning Options

The three drain cleaning options commonly used are store-bought cleaning chemicals, drain snaking, and hydro-jetting. 

Chemical Drain Cleaning

Chemical drain cleaners are the most affordable options for unclogging your drains. However, they are not the best drain cleaning option. In fact, they are the least preferred. This is because chemical cleaners contain toxic chemicals that corrode your drain pipes after prolonged use. With each use of these chemicals, the integrity of the drain pipes weakens until they can no longer carry wastewater. 

Professional sewer and drain specialists do not use chemical drains. These cleaners dissolve clogs and or sorts of organic debris like grease clinging to the wall of the pipes. However, they often do more than that, as they eat into the pipe walls. Many homeowners use chemical drains as a DIY option when they need to quickly resolve plumbing issues, such as slow-moving drains and blocked drainage. Using chemical drain cleaners over an extended period can complicate issues in your drain system. 

In addition to these drawbacks, many of these chemicals are not eco-friendly, meaning that they have harmful impacts on the environment. Although some manufacturers now make bio-drain cleaners, most chemical drain cleaners on the market are not suitable for use in your plumbing drains. 

Snaking Drain Cleaning

This method of drain cleaning uses a device known as a plumbing auger. This is a thick, long tool that moves through the drain pipes. It has a head that is inserted into the pipes and a control on the surface that is used to direct its movements. Due to its flexibility, it can move through the pipes pretty easily, scraping off clogs and debris from the walls of the pipes.

With a hand crank, the auger is sent down, deeper into the drain until it reaches the waste causing the clog. As the drill is moved, it effectively removes clogs and root intrusions causing any blockage by disintegrating the gunk and allowing the free flow of water. While the drain snaking method is effective, it has some drawbacks.

It is not the best option for removing stubborn stains. The auger is mostly able to clear clogs from a space not bigger than its size. This means that some clumps of waste or gunk may still remain on the pipe walls after snaking. In this case, it would be pretty easy for the clog to build up again. In other words, the drain snaking method is not preventive. 



Hydro-jetting is a relatively new addition to the industry. It is by far, the most efficient, eco-friendly, and effective drain cleaning option used by most sewer and drain specialists today. The working principle of hydro-jetting relies on the use of pressurized water ejected from a small nozzle to dislodge clogs and clumps of waste clinging to the walls of the drain pipes. 

Hydro-jetting, as a method of drain cleaning, does not impact any harm to your drain pipes, and it is suitable for both residential and commercial plumbing systems. Hydro-jetting utilizes a stream of water under high pressure; as the pressurized water is passed into the pipes, it effectively removes all the waste in the drain pipe. While hydro-jetting is very effective, it may not be ideal for application in all situations. 

Due to the high pressure of the water, it is typically not used in weak or old pipes, as it may cause cracks or complicate the damage already present in the pipe. This is why we recommend a preliminary inspection of the pipes using a sewer camera (a specialized camera for viewing the inside of drain pipes). In situations where hydro-jetting will negatively impact the integrity of the pipes, drain snaking is best used. Before deciding to use hydro-jetting or any of these drain cleaning options, be sure to consult with a trusted sewer and drain specialist in your area. 


Signs You Need a Drain Cleaning Carried Out on Your Plumbing System

Before a clog happens, you will notice signs of the situation, if you pay close attention. To avoid having your sewer drains clogged up, leading to emergency drain cleaning, it is best to have the drains checked regularly. 

Here are some signs that you need to carry out drain cleaning:

Bad odor: Usually, a foul odor is an obvious sign of a clog somewhere in your drain pipes. The sooner you check it out, the earlier you prevent the situation from deteriorating. 

Pooling water: This could indicate a blocked drain or broken pipe. Sometimes, you might also see fresh sprouting of grasses around the area. 

Slow-moving drains: When there is a blockage, a slow-moving is likely one of the first signs you will see. 

Water backup: Water backup means returning water meant to go out back into your home. This can be a very unpleasant experience when it happens. The easiest way to ensure this does not happen is to schedule regular maintenance of your drain system. 


Need Help Cleaning Your Drain?

Reach out to us today at N.W. Sewer & Drain for quick diagnosis and resolution of all sewer and drain-related issues in your home or office. We have a ready-to-move reliable team of experienced plumbing technicians dedicated to fixing all your drainage issues, including broken drain pipes and clogged drain pipes.  

We currently service residential and commercial properties in Seattle,  including Everett, Marysville, Arlington, Oak Harbor, Burlinton, Bellingham, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Renton,  Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Auburn and other surrounding areas. For about 20 years, we have maintained top-notch drain cleaning services. Whether snaking, hydro-jetting, or trenchless sewer pipe repair, we follow the best practices in the industry.


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