Nothing is more frustrating than finishing a load of laundry only to find that the water will not drain from the washing machine. Whether caused by built-up residue or items left behind in pockets, drain blockages can leave your clothes soaked and your washer useless. But never fear - dealing with drain blockages in your laundry is an easy do-it-yourself project you can handle yourself without having to call the professionals.
In this blog, we will walk through various methods for clearing common drain clogs so you can get your washer up and running again in no time. With just a few simple tools and some elbow grease, you’ll have that drain flowing freely once more to start fresh with your laundry routine.
Common Causes of Drain Blockages in the Laundry
There are several reasons why drain blockages can occur in washing machines and laundry tubs. Often, it comes down to buildup of grime and debris over time or items left unintentionally in pockets during washes. Some of the most common culprits of drain clogs include:
Hair is one of the biggest causes of clogs, whether from heads or pet fur, as it easily wraps around drains and piles up.
The tiny fabric fibres that slough off during washes accumulate rapidly and constrict drains.
Coins and small objects
Over time, coins, buttons, pins, or other small items tucked away in pockets work their way loose and lodge in drains.
Detergent and fabric softener residue
The scummy buildup from liquid or powder detergents and fabric softeners that remain after washing piles up in drains.
Paper and sticky labels
Receipts, tissues or labels from new clothes that aren’t fully removed before washing can attach themselves inside drains.
There are some simple things you can do to help prevent drain blockages from occurring regularly in the first place. After each load of laundry, carefully check clothes pockets for coins, paper, or other small objects before washing and removing any found.
You should also habitually clean the detergent drawers and wipe down the inside of the washer drum to remove any residual grime. Remove the drain cover for washer drains on the floor and scoop out any lint buildup once a month.
Using liquid detergents instead of powder varieties can help minimise residue left behind. Use drain cleaner products or a cup of white vinegar added to an empty wash cycle occasionally as a cleaning agent. These preventive measures will go a long way in reducing blockages and saving you repair costs or cleaning issues.
DIY Solutions for Clearing Drain Blockages
If your washer or laundry drain is clogged, you can try a few easy DIY solutions before calling a professional. For minor blockages, simply remove any lint or debris you can see stuck in the drain filter or cover.
You can also use a plunger on washer standpipe drains or floor drains to try and dislodge clogs. For stubborn blockages, try using a drain cleaning tool or coat hanger fashioned into a probe to break up clogs further down the drain line.
Commercial drain cleaners containing enzymes or bacteria are also effective - follow product instructions. As a greener option, try pouring a cup of baking soda followed by vinegar into the drain and letting it fizz for several hours before flushing with water. Be patient; some solutions may take time to clear out a blockage fully. But these simple methods will work for most common drain clogs.
Keeping Your Laundry Flowing
With the right tools and techniques, dealing with drain blockages in your laundry is an easy DIY project you can take care of yourself. As this blog outlines, following some preventive maintenance and using safe chemical or mechanical methods will help keep your washer drains flowing freely.
However, if you continue having stubborn drain issues that won’t clear up after multiple attempts, it’s best to contact a professional for assistance. At Fixed Today, our trained plumbers have years of experience in safely and effectively unclogging household drains.
Don’t hesitate to reach out if you need help with a drain inspection, jetting, video camera work or full drain repairs. We’re here to get your laundry room fully functional again quickly with a guaranteed drain blockage solution.