Never ignore blocked drains in your home, as clogs and blockages can put pressure on the home's pipes, leading to leaks and other damage to the plumbing. Severe clogs can also cause sediment and debris to back up into a tub or sink, and this can be very unhygienic, and will also keep you from using that plumbing fixture until it's properly repaired! If your home is prone to blockages, note a few questions you might have about this plumbing issue, and this can help you address it properly and ensure your home's plumbing is always in good repair.
Should a pipe just be snaked when it's clogged?
It's never good for a homeowner to try to snake out a pipe themselves, as this tool can easily get caught in a plumbing connector or a piece of broken pipe, and cause even more damage to the home's plumbing. Unclogging a pipe with a snake is also more difficult than you may realize, as you need to gently pull a clog out of place, not simply force it through the pipe. Also, a snake may not be needed for some clogs, as these may be caused by oil clinging to the pipes, or by a water leak. Instead of assuming you can or should just snake out a clogged drain, call a plumber to handle the problem properly.
Don't some clogs eventually go away on their own?
In some cases, toilet tissue or human waste may eventually break down so that a clog then goes away. However, you don't want to count on that happening, and remember that a clog can actually trap more sediment and debris, and put pressure on the pipes every time you turn on a faucet or flush the toilet. Rather than ignoring a clog and hoping for the best, try to plunge it out or call a plumber to address it.
Do persistent clogs mean that the home needs new plumbing?
In some cases, a persistent clog can mean that the home will need some new plumbing pipes; a cracked pipe can slow down water that flushes away waste, so that clogs form, as an example. A clog itself can cause cracks and damage to the pipes. However, the home's pipes may simply need a thorough cleaning, if the clogs are caused by oily residue or other sediment that has built up inside the pipe. Your home might also benefit from a water softener, to reduce minerals that build up inside pipes and cause clogs.