What's the Difference Between Drain Clearing and Drain Cleaning?

In general terms, there is not much difference between the words cleaning and clearing. Both words basically refer to removing debris and dirt from something. But in the plumbing world, there is a vast difference. However, when pipes and drains are involved, clearing means ensuring a steady water flow by removing clogs that are obstructing pipes, while cleaning a drain means making a pipe totally clean by removing all the clogs and debris.

A clogged drain can be frustrating and inhibit your everyday life. If you have a stubborn clog, or if your pipes have a clogging problem, you may need a professional plumber to either clear a drain or clean a pipe.

The experienced team at Plumbing by Jake can provide any and all of the services you need to keep your pipes healthy and the water flowing in Golden Valley, Arizona.

What Is Drain Clearing?

When a clog restricts the water flow in a drain pipe in a new home or business’s plumbing, a clearing is most often what is needed. A plumber will use his tools of the trade to remove pieces or all of the clog to get the water moving through the pipes again.

In new plumbing and drainage systems, this quick solution is a suitable one, but it could be a short-term answer to a long-term problem. In most cases, the particles and remnants of a clog will be left behind and often, leftover debris will build up and result in a future clog. These pipes will need to be cleared again, and sometimes it becomes a reoccurring issue.

When a plumbing technician is called out to clear a drain, they often use a tool called a snake. This device is made up of tiny metal blades attached to a sturdy cable. Powered by a motor, the cable is lowered into the pipe, and sharp blades cut into and through clogs, breaking up the obstruction.

Though it allows water to start flowing, this procedure does not fully clear the clog, and eventually, a drain cleaning will be necessary to get rid of all of the clog’s remnants. More dirt, debris, grease, trash, and hair will start to collect, jamming up the pipe and restricting the water flow once again.

What Is Drain Cleaning?

Drain cleaning is more of a long-term or permanent fix to the clog problem. Cleaning is usually the right option when it comes to older plumbing, with drain pipes often getting jammed with tough clogs. To get the pipes unrestricted of all those pesky clogging agents, you need a skilled plumber to clean the drain pipes and allow the water flow to keep pumping through those pipes.

Many veer away from drain cleaning because of the cost of the service, which is more expensive than clearing, and in some cases, can be pricey. Drain cleaning is far more effective, and over time, it will save repeat calls to a plumber, leading to repeat billing. As time goes on, cleaning may end up being the cheaper solution.

A plumber will specific high-pressure water hose for drain cleaning. Water blasts through pipes and the water’s velocity attacks any debris and grime in the pipe or attached to the pipe’s walls. By totally scouring the plumbing, debris cannot build up or cling to grease-coated pipes and create clogs, so the flow of water is unencumbered, and the plumbing is healthy.

Do-It-Yourself Drainpipe Cleaning Is Not a Good Idea

There are millions of YouTube videos out there detailing how plumbing services like drain clearing and cleaning can be done as DIY projects. There is no doubt, an immense sense of pride can stem from someone successfully fixing their own household problems without outside help.

But there are certain projects that should not be attempted by someone without training or plumbing experience. This is especially true of drain cleaning. Removing a clog or cleaning a buildup of debris in a drain pipe may sound simple, but in reality, these are involved processes that take specific skills and the proper tools.

Besides a plunger, plenty of DIY tools are available to the novice plumber. There is a whole market dedicated to offering DIY community solutions to any plumbing problem. Drain cleaning is a complex process, and it is a horrible idea to try and do it without training.

Some of the reasons to leave drain cleaning to professionals include:

  • Using a drain cleaning agent like Drano – These products use chemicals and contain acid, and it can eat away at pipes and pipe glue and cause severe damage, aggravating the problem instead of solving it.
  • Using plungers with too much force – Plungers clean by using air pressure, and while it is sometimes effective, in the wrong hands a plunger can be used with too much force. Shoving a plunger against the plumbing can bend pipe walls and ruin drainage systems.
  • Using the wrong hose, like a garden hose, to clean drains – The wrong type of hose or using it improperly adds more water to the plumbing and may cause flooding or other issues.

The best method for cleaning drains is to call a professional plumber. They will come out and use a specialized hose and ensure the pipes are clean and ready to give the homeowner years of unobstructed and easy-flowing water.

Contact Plumbing by Jake for Drain Clearing Services in Golden Valley Today

Essentially, drain clearing can be cheap and offer a quick solution that is usually only short-term. Frequent drainage issues often occur in older drain pipes that have seen a lot of action, and this old plumbing will eventually require drain cleaning to remove all the clogs and make those pipes sparkle anew. Drain cleaning services can get expensive.

Plumbing by Jake can take care of any of these issues. We have spent years providing homeowners and business owners of Golden Valley, Arizona, with professional and friendly service. If a clog is interfering with your life, we are ready 24/7 to clear it out of your way and clean the path going forward.

Contact us anytime. We often provide same-day service to relieve those stressful plumbing issues, letting you get back to your pre-clog life.