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Using Chemical Cleaners To Remove Grease Clogs

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If you have a drain in your kitchen where grease has been forced down into the plumbing, then you will likely see a large clog formation at some point. Grease is likely to form an impenetrable and congealed mass, and your plunger will be unable to remove it. In this case, you may need the assistance of a plumber and a drain snake. However, there are a few things you can try first to see if the grease will release, like using a chemical cleaner.

Use Chemical Materials

You can use chemical drain cleaning solutions to get rid of drain clogs formed from grease. You should understand that you should only do this if your plumbing pipes are made from PVC. Drain cleaners will create heat that is far less likely to cause damage to PVC than it is to old steel piping sections. Also, certain drain cleaners will interact with metal. This can cause pits to form in the steel, and a caustic gas will be released from your pipes. This happens most often when sulfuric acid is utilized. It is best to stay away from this drain cleaner if your p-trap is made out of steel or if you are unsure about the material used for deep-seated drainage lines.

If you want to forego the use of sulfuric acid, then your next best option is sodium hydroxide or caustic lye. This material is a strong base that interacts with the grease in your pipes and turns it into a soapy material that can be rinsed away with hot water. Lye is much heavier than water, so it can easily reach a clog once it is poured down your drain. Consider buying a lye drain cleaner to clear your drains or purchase a water and lye mixture instead. Lye is also used to make soap, so make sure to stay away from more solid products that are sold for this purpose.

Protecting Yourself

If you want to use lye to clear grease clogs or if you think your PVC pipes can handle sulfuric acid, then you will need to protect yourself from the chemicals. Lye is often used to release flesh from animal bones in a quick manner, and sulfuric acid is an extremely strong acid that has a PH between one and two.

The strength of these chemicals means that you need to wear rubber gloves, goggles, a rubber apron, and a respirator if possible. Also, avoid pouring drain cleaning chemicals directly in water. This may cause spitting, especially in the case when sulfuric acid is used, because the chemical reacts directly with the water. Also, think about using only small amounts of chemicals at first. If the chemicals do not remove the clog, then call a plumber immediately. It can be extremely dangerous to use plungers, snakes, and other tools at this point that will cause the chemicals to splash. 

For more information, contact Rolling Bay Plumbing or a similar company.