Drain clogs are a problem that every homeowner will eventually face. Materials can get stuck in the toilet or the sink drains, they can also build up over time and cause slow drains or overflowing. If your plunger isn’t enough to unclog, you’re going to need something more powerful. Plumbers will often choose to use a plumbing auger or a hydro jet in these situations.
Also called a plumbing auger, the plumbing snake is a long metal tube encasing an inner cable with blades or corkscrew auger attached to one end. The other end has a crank attached. The cable end of the snake is placed into the drain and the crank is turned to extend the cable. When the cable has reached the clog, you will need to continue to turn the crank until it has pushed through the clog, then pull it out. Plumbing snakes can be a straight tube (for sink drains) or J-shaped (for toilets). There is also a larger, motorized version of the snake, typically used by an experienced plumber.
Hydro jetting is a high-pressure hose with a specialized nozzle connected to a machine that pressurizes water, creating a powerful stream that can clear the clog. The material that is clogging the drain (hair, minerals, grease, oil, etc.) will be forced to go down the pipe. Before hydro jetting, a plumber will usually use a small camera to inspect the pipe for damage.