Home Energy Savings 9 Natural Solutions For Unclogging Your Drains

9 Natural Solutions For Unclogging Your Drains

free flowing drain

According to WebMD, your kitchen sink is one of the dirtiest things in your home – even dirtier than your toilet seat! Water not draining quickly enough out of the sink is a warning sign that you may soon be dealing with a clogged drain.

However, many of the clog-fixing products contain harsh and hazardous chemicals that can negatively impact the environment and cause or exacerbate illness in your home. This is why homemade solutions should always be your first line of defence for fighting clogs.

Here are 9 of the healthiest and least toxic ways to deal with drain blockages in your home.

Boiling Water

Using boiling water is the easiest solution of all, and should be the first thing you try, especially if you don’t have a really slow moving drain. All you need is a pot of boiling water.


  1. Place a kettle of water on the stove and bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Remove as much standing water from the sink as you can.
  3. Pour the entire kettle of boiling water into the sink.
  4. Wait 10 minutes.
  5. If the water remains in the sink without draining, give the water time to cool and remove it to try again.
  6. Repeat the process several times to move the clog, but this often works on many types of stoppages.

Boiling Water and Salt

Salt is a versatile and abrasive mineral, and works as a highly effective yet gentle scouring agent. Pouring salt down your kitchen sink will scour the inside of the pipe.

What You Need

  1. Half a cup of salt
  2. Kettle of boiling water


  1. Use a bowl to remove standing water from the sink
  2. Pour about ½ cup of table salt down the drain
  3. Pour in the boiling water.
  4. Let it sit for 10 minutes
  5. Flush with hot water to clear the mixture

Baking Soda and Salt

Mixing baking soda with salt will increase the power of the baking soda as a cleaning agent.  

What You Need

  1. One cup of baking soda
  2. Half a cup of salt
  3. Kettle of boiling water


  1. Mix the cup of baking soda with a half-cup of salt
  2. Pour the mixture down the drain.
  3. Let the mixture sit for several hours
  4. Flush with boiling water.
  5. Repeat this process if it doesn’t work the first time.

Liquid Dish Detergent

Most kitchen sink clogs are caused by grease and fat, and dish-washing liquid has the power to dissolve clogs that are mostly made of grease. The other clog elements are held together by the grease. When it is dissolved, the other elements flow down the drain along with the water.

What You Need

  1. A cup of dishwashing liquid
  2. A pot of boiling water


  1. Remove any standing water in the sink
  2. Boil a litre of water and pour it down the drain
  3. Wait for the water to cool and remove any standing water in the sink
  4. Pour a cup of dishwashing liquid into the drain and wait a few minutes
  5. Boil another pot of water
  6. Pour the boiling water down the drain

Boiling Water and Vinegar

Vinegar is a powerful cleaner is a cheap and environmentally-friendly, preventative maintenance tool. It contains acetic acid, which acts as an excellent solvent in removing organic buildup of crud in pipes. It is also an effective, non-toxic alternative to common cleaners like bleach.

Industry experts recommend pouring a half bottle of vinegar down your drain every 3 months to keep clogs from forming.

What You Need

  1. A bottle of white vinegar
  2. A pot of boiling water
  3. Lemon juice


Pour the half bottle of vinegar down the drain. Let it sit for 10 minutes, and then flush it with hot water. If you don’t like the smell of vinegar, pour some lemon juice down the sink to give your drain a fresh scent.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

Baking Soda and Vinegar are two of the most common green ingredients used for clearing clogs. Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a mild alkali that cleans and deodorizes. When combined with vinegar, it produces excellent cleaning results.

What You Need:

  1. A cup of baking soda
  2. A bottle of vinegar
  3. A pot of hot water


Mix 1/3rd of a cup of baking soda with 1/3rd of a cup of vinegar in a measuring cup. It will generate a fizz. Pour it down the clogged drain immediately. Alternatively, you can pour the baking soda down the drain first, and then pour on the vinegar. Let it sit for at least hour or even overnight, and then pour the pot of hot water down the drain. This will help to clean out the pipe by removing the gunk and grime that has built up over time.  

The Bent Wire Hanger

What You Need:

  1. Regular coat wire hanger
  2. Pot of boiling water

Straighten out the hanger. Create a small hook by bending one end of the hanger over. Stick the hook end down the drain hole as far as it will go, and start twisting the hanger as you push it down. Keep twisting until the water starts to drain. Pour the hot water down the drain.


Using a plunger is the simplest and most popular tool used to clear a clog. It works using the forces of suction and compression. When you pull up on a plunger, it pulls the water upward. When you push down, it forces the water downward. Keep these forces in mind when plunging your drains.


  1. If you have a double sink, first seal off the second side with a stopper.
  2. Fill the sink you intend to unclog with enough water to cover the bell of the plunger.
  3. Place the plunger firmly over the drain and plunge vigorously several times.
  4. When the clog is cleared, remove the plunger and flush the drain well with warm water.

Drain Auger

Also known as a plumber’s snake, a drain auger is a long, flexible cable the a small auger on one end and a handle on the other. They work by reaching down into the pipes to remove the clog-causing blockage. They are designed for blockages that are too stubborn for plungers and other DIY methods. You need take due care when using snakes because they can tear up your pipes if you use them improperly.  

Here’s a step-by-step demonstration of how to use a drain snake.