How do you clean a slimy drain?

caflowerluverDecember 9, 2008

It is not plugged up, but I can see what looks like slime along the sides of the kitchen drain. I scrub the sink every couple of days, but how do you clean the drain. I don't put food or anything down it but water and dish soap. And I don't have a garbage disposal.



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A toothbrush might be small enough, use a little bleach to kill the bacteria. Do this once or twice a month, it should stay clean.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2008 at 10:36PM
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michelle_phxaz - thanks for the reply. I tried that and could only get down a tiny way. I shone a flash light down it and it goes way down. I need something that will clean it all the way down.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 11:12AM
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Some things are just thed rain beyond your reach. You really can't clean it all the way to the disposal plant. Clean what's close and forget ther est....pour boilingw ater down it, that may dissolve some of the scum and it will make you feel better.
Linda c

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 11:17AM
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Put some baking soda down the drain . . . if the drain is wet, you might have to push it down. Then pour in some white vinegar. It will bubble and fizz. When it subsides, add more vinegar, till there's no more fizzing. Follow by rinsing with the hottest water you can get.

I clean my coffee pot with vinegar, and always clean the kitchen drain with the hot vinegar from the pot cleaning.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 11:51AM
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Thanks for hints. I will try the vinegar and baking soda method. I am just afraid if it gets worse it might plug up.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 4:51PM
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A plumber told me that straight hydrogen peroxide will eat stuff like that. You probably need to drip it down the sides for it to work.

My favorite plumber ever told me to run the hottest water down my drains for several minutes once a week, and also to pour clorox down my drains once a week, to keep them clean.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 11:33PM
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Well I tried the baking soda and vinegar method and it helped a little but it is still there. It is grossing me out.

bigdoglover- I will try the peroxide tomorrow. Thanks.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 12:46AM
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They make brushes that are a really thin handle with bristles all around, thin enough to get into a drain. We used them in science class to clean test tubes. I included one I just found on Google.

Here is a link that might be useful: thin brush

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 2:35AM
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I used to unclog a very slow drain by starting the (hot) water at whatever speed it would be accpted by the drain. Then I'd start pouring salt in there, again, at whatever it can take. The idea is a good salty solution running through there and the abrasive will take out some of the scum. It would speed up and more and more would go. Sometimes I'd take the sprayer hose and shoot it down the drain for a little pressure. It would help. I'd usually use 1/2 box of salt to a full box and I'd have a clear running drain. That was back in the days when I used to dump a lot of grease down the drain. Now I don't have the problem.

If you've done a vinegar/soda cleanout, and used a box worth and about a gallon of vinegar, followed by a hot water rinse, you should have a very clean drain. Are you sure there's really something down there?

But I do still occasionally use the baking soda/vinegar and sometimes mix salt with the baking soda and use just hot water.

Oh, and for the best effectiveness, plug the drains after the soda and vinegar start to fizz, that way the pressure goes down the pipes and not into the air.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 3:26AM
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There is a drain cleaner at big box stores in a silver gray plastic bottle that has two solutions inside and a divider so the two solutions only mix when poured in the drain.

Works great for a reluctant garbage disposal. Don't remember the name nor do I recall what's in it, if it even says on the label. May even just be vinegar and soda at a price.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 12:07PM
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It is not clogged, just has lots of slimy goo all around it. I can see it when I look down the drain. I don't know if it is building up further down but want to nip it in the bud. I think DH has a brush like that.
Thanks everyone.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 12:14PM
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Even if it's not clogged, I think drain cleaners are supposed to eat drain-clogging stuff like slime, so it might help to try them.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 1:21PM
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modern life interiors

make a paste with baking soda and some vinegar and scrub with a toothbrush.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 7:10PM
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I agree w/all of above esp baking soda/vinegar & then hot water. But I have to wonder why you are shining a flashlight down a drain, which is not clogged, & worrying about it? It's a kitchen drain. As long as the water drains properly, & you clean it regularly, I don't think worrying about it is necessary. The narrow brush for this purpose sounds like a good idea for you, but while I'm pretty clean, & clean my drains w/above solution about once a month, I don't eat out of them.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2008 at 4:30PM
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Would a baby bottle brush work?

    Bookmark   December 13, 2008 at 8:47PM
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DON'T DO THE DRAIN BRUSH!!!! I tried that in my bathroom. The drain had the goo you're describing, and it was really gross. I ordered one of those brushes from a junk catalog. When it came, I ran hot water down the drain and cleaned with the brush.

The brush just pushed the goo down the drain! It went as far as the brush would reach and then formed a big clog!!!! I used Liquid Plumber, vingear & baking soda, plunger, and nothing would move that big clog. I had to call a plumber to take the pipe apart under the sink and clean it out. The guy thought it was funny that trying to CLEAN the drain caused the clog. It cost me $100!

So please don't use the brush - it does not work.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2008 at 10:48PM
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mommabird - Thanks for warning me about the brush.

I just saw the gunk and thought it would be better to clean it BEFORE it became a problem. I guess I will just leave it alone.

Thanks everyone for your suggestions.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2008 at 11:02AM
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Clare, I know you felt the vinegar and baking soda didn't do the job, but I'd suggest you keep at it, maybe once a week, followed by very hot water. I usually use about a cup of BS, followed by several vinegar rinses, and see if that helps over time. Hopefully, after several treatments, you'll see improvement. It's an organic method that sure doesn't break the bank!


    Bookmark   December 15, 2008 at 11:22AM
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