How to Flush a Drain

Faucet with running water and orange peels to be flushed closeup

The Spruce / Ana Cadena

The first time you have to deal with a clogged drain can be daunting, but it does not always have to be a mess and a hassle. Set a regular maintenance routine. It is the best way to keep the drains clog-free in your home. It does not take much time or much money to perform this regular maintenance. And it can save you from the cost of a severely clogged drain

Also, keep a drain's four biggest problem items from going down the drain: cooking grease, coffee grounds, hair, and soap scum. Collect cooking grease in an old jar or tin and dispose of it in the garbage, compost or throw out coffee grounds, and get a good mesh catch to cover the drain and capture the hair and soap scum.

Weekly Drain Maintenance

Weekly, there are a few things you can do to give your drain the best chances for not being clogged. Once a week, flush your drain by boiling a large pot of water. Pour one-half of the pot down the drain. Wait five minutes and pour the rest. It's a simple thing that can help dislodge any grease or debris lurking in your drain. The hot water is perfect for melting any grease buildup and only takes a few minutes to do.

Boiling pot with hot water poured into kitchen sink drain

The Spruce / Ana Cadena

Monthly Drain Maintenance

Use an enzymatic cleaner once a month to keep your drains fresh and clean, consider using a product like Bi-O-Kleen's Bacout Stain and Odor Eliminator for this purpose.

Enzymatic cleaners are great at breaking down organic matter in the drains that may not have made it all the way down.

Drains With Disposals

Run ice cubes and orange peels through the garbage disposal to knock off any residue on your disposal blades. Make sure to slice the peels, because large peels can jam a disposal.

Ice sharpens the blades easily and dislodges any food remnants that may have slipped under the blades or has become attached to them.

Ice cubes and orange peels run through garbage disposal to knock off residue

The Spruce / Ana Cadena

Seasonal Drain Maintenance

Two to three times a year, flush the drain with baking soda and vinegar. Run hot water down the drain. Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of vinegar with the hot water down the drain. This combo foams up and removes debris, and it also helps kill bacteria and remove odors. Do this little bit of maintenance anytime or when odors start to become noticeable in the drain.

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