Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Natural Shower Drain Fix: Baking Soda and Vinegar

You will need:
-Baking soda (1/4th cup increments)
-Vinegar (1/2 cup increments)
-Mason jar or other cover for drain
-Optional: Old mascara brush

Now...that mason jar sounds really weird, and I get that.  But hear me out: A mason jar bottom curves up, and so does my shower drain cover.  It made very logical sense to me.  You can use whatever you want to cover the drain. 

To start, I poked around with a mascara brush in my drain to try to coax the blockage out on its own accord.  How did my drain get blocked, you ask? Well...

I could play Mufasa on Broadway (if it was a silent show with no singing) and not need a mane built into my costume.  I have about 3 feet of hair.  Really thick, really long, mane-like hair.  It is great for styling, but terrible on shower drains. 

Anyway, so I poked around with the mascara brush to try to get the whatever it was making my shower not drain loose.  That didn't do a whole lot of good (mostly because I have waited, oh I don't know, a year to address this issue?) so I went a different route. 

I am not a big fan of chemicals, I will use Lime Away some but I was not real interested in getting some Liquid Fire or Drain-O or whatever the heck else is on the market these days that sometimes result in the finish coming off your tub.

So I opted for the fix it all combo of baking soda and vinegar.  Even vinegar smells way better than chemicals. For a lesser blockage and if you don't have vinegar, try lemon juice.

Anyway, I poured about 1/8th of the baking soda in the drain with an elaborate paper funnel I made (fancy technology only at this apartment).  Next, I poured in 1/4th cup of the vinegar and quickly plopped my mason jar drain cover over it so that it would fizz down and not up.  I then poured the remaining baking soda in, and vinegar, and repeated the process.

Next, I plugged my tub and let the hot water run until it was a couple of inches deep.  I let the drain out, and it looked like I was getting a nice little vortex of draining water.  That was something I had not seen in a while!  Based on how well yours drains after this, you may want to repeat the process. If a couple of times doesn't work...well you might just have to call a professional on that one.

Now, obviously I cannot say how often this will need to be done as everyone's showers are different and this is the first time I have done it.  But I can definitely say that I saw REMARKABLE improvements.

For example, before I went home last week, the shower water backed up to around my ankles.  This makes for a nice warm foot soak, but all in all is not my favorite way to spend my shower.  After just showering when I got back from a hectic day today, my shower never backed up ABOVE MY TOES! That is right, it did not even get over my toes.

I would have jumped for joy, but I was in the shower and that would be dangerous.

After losing my wallet, being stranded, finding my wallet, and getting one heck of a life mulligan from a friend who took me to retrieve my wallet, I needed some good news today.  This shower was some fantastic news.  The dinner I ate was also delicious, but more on that tomorrow.

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