If you have made the mistake of flushing grease and oil down your drain, then you may end up with a substantial clog in your sewer line. Clogs that cause a complete backup of the plumbing system may need to be treated with a sewer cleaning; however, if the clog has merely slowed down the drains, then there are a few things you can do to safely remove the clog.
Use Enzymatic Cleaners
Most people understand that caustic drain cleaners can cause pipe damage. Specifically, the chemicals can eat through pipes and cause leaks, especially if the cleaner has to sit in the drain for some time to eat through the clog. For this reason, it is best to avoid the chemical agents if you can. One good alternative is to use an enzymatic sewer cleaning compound.
Enzymatic cleaners contain either bacteria or enzymes that eat the organic materials that are clogging your drain. The enzymes in the cleaner are the same ones that your own body makes to break down food so it can be used as fuel. Protease, amylase, and lipase are three of the most common enzymes found in these cleaners. When it comes to grease and oil removal, you want a drain cleaner made with lipase, the enzyme that breaks down fat.
Once you purchase the right cleaner, you can simply pour it down one or several of your drains. You can add it directly to the sewer cleanout found in your basement or the exterior of your home. You may need to add the cleaner several times, since enzymes are used up as they actively break down fat.
Run Hot Water
If you use the enzymatic cleaner properly, then your clog will dislodge and the fat and oil will be swept away by water flowing through the sewer system. To ensure that the oils move along the system instead of depositing elsewhere, make sure to flush your drains with hot water. You'll want to give the enzymes time to work, so wait a few hours before flushing.
When flushing the system, add a surfactant to your drains as well. Surfactants include dish soap and other detergents that attract oil and grease so it can be rinsed away better by water.
The addition of salt to the drains can help to clear away grease and oil as well.
If you want to know more about drain cleaning and how to get rid of clogs and debris stuck in your sewer system, speak with a sewer professional like All Clear Pumping & Sewer.