The Benefits of Snake Drains: A Comprehensive Guide

Snaking drains is a process that involves using a specialized tool to clear blockages in pipes and drains. It is a common maintenance task that homeowners and businesses can perform themselves or hire a professional to do for them. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the benefits of snaking drains and how it can help to keep your plumbing system running smoothly. Whether you’re dealing with slow drains or clogged pipes, snaking can be an effective solution to get your water flowing freely again. So, let’s dive in and discover the advantages of this essential plumbing task.

What are Snake Drains?

Definition and Purpose

  • Definition of Snake Drains:
    Snake drains, also known as “S” drains or trench drains, are a type of drainage system that is commonly used in industrial, commercial, and residential settings. They are designed to collect and channel surface water away from buildings, parking lots, and other structures to prevent flooding and water damage.
  • How Snake Drains Work:
    Snake drains are typically made of concrete or plastic and are shaped like an “S” or “U” to provide a gradual slope for water to flow into the drain. They are usually installed in trenches that are at least 6 inches deep and can be up to several feet wide. The trench is then covered with a grate or other type of cover to prevent debris and other materials from entering the drain.
  • The Purpose of Snake Drains:
    The primary purpose of snake drains is to provide an efficient and effective way to manage surface water and prevent flooding. They are particularly useful in areas where there is a high water table or where heavy rainfall is common. In addition to protecting buildings and other structures from water damage, snake drains can also help to prevent erosion and improve the overall drainage of a property.

Why Use Snake Drains?

Key takeaway: Snake drains are a highly effective and efficient tool for clearing blockages in drains and reaching difficult areas in drains. They are a non-invasive method of drain cleaning that can save time and money on drain maintenance. When using snake drains, it is important to take safety precautions and follow proper techniques to avoid injury or damage to the pipes.

Benefits and Advantages

Clearing Blockages in Drains

Snake drains are a highly effective tool for clearing blockages in drains. Traditional methods of drain cleaning can be time-consuming and often require extensive excavation or digging to access the drain. In contrast, snake drains can easily reach and navigate through the curves and bends of the drain pipes, making it easier to remove any blockages or debris that may be causing the problem. This not only saves time but also reduces the amount of disruption caused to the surrounding area.

Reaching Difficult Areas in Drains

One of the main advantages of snake drains is their ability to reach difficult areas in drains. Traditional cleaning methods may be limited by the access points available, meaning that certain areas of the drain may be inaccessible. Snake drains, on the other hand, can be inserted into the drain from above and can be easily maneuvered to reach even the most difficult areas. This means that even if there is a blockage deep within the drain, it can be easily removed with the use of a snake drain.

Saving Time and Money on Drain Maintenance

In addition to being highly effective at clearing blockages, snake drains can also save time and money on drain maintenance. By using a snake drain, it is possible to quickly and easily identify any issues with the drain, such as damage or wear and tear. This means that any necessary repairs can be carried out quickly and efficiently, reducing the need for more extensive and costly repairs in the future. Furthermore, because snake drains are a non-invasive method of drain cleaning, they cause less damage to the drain itself, reducing the need for replacements and saving money in the long run.

Types of Snake Drains

Manual vs. Electric Snake Drains

Manual snake drains

Manual snake drains are the traditional type of drain cleaning equipment. They are operated by a person who manually pushes the snake cable into the drain line. This process requires physical effort and can be tiring, especially for longer drain lines. However, manual snake drains are generally more affordable than electric models and are suitable for smaller drain lines.

Electric snake drains

Electric snake drains, on the other hand, are powered by electricity. They are easier to operate as they require less physical effort and can be used for longer periods without getting tired. Electric snake drains are also more suitable for larger drain lines and can reach further into the drain line than manual models. They are also more versatile as they can be used for other applications such as removing tree roots and debris.

Comparison of manual and electric snake drains

When it comes to choosing between manual and electric snake drains, there are several factors to consider. Manual models are generally more affordable and are suitable for smaller drain lines. They are also easier to maneuver in tight spaces. However, they require more physical effort and can be tiring to use for longer periods. Electric models, on the other hand, are more expensive but are more powerful and versatile. They require less physical effort and can be used for longer periods without getting tired. They are also suitable for larger drain lines and can reach further into the drain line than manual models. Ultimately, the choice between manual and electric snake drains depends on the specific needs and requirements of the drain cleaning job.

Using Snake Drains Safely

Safety Precautions and Tips

Snake drains are useful tools for clearing out drainage pipes and sewers, but they can also be dangerous if not used properly. It is important to take safety precautions and follow proper techniques when using snake drains to avoid injury or damage to the pipes.

Here are some safety precautions and tips to keep in mind when using snake drains:

  • Always wear protective gear, such as gloves and safety glasses, when using a snake drain.
  • Make sure the drain opening is large enough for the snake drain to fit through without getting stuck.
  • Never force the snake drain into the drain opening as this can cause damage to the pipes.
  • Always keep a firm grip on the handle of the snake drain to maintain control.
  • Be aware of any obstacles in the pipes, such as debris or clogs, that could get stuck in the snake drain and cause it to get stuck or break.
  • Never use a snake drain in a septic tank or other hazardous environment without proper training and equipment.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using and maintaining the snake drain.

By following these safety precautions and tips, you can use a snake drain safely and effectively to clear out your drainage pipes and sewers.

Maintenance and Storage of Snake Drains

Keeping Your Snake Drain in Good Condition

  • Regular maintenance of snake drains is essential to ensure that they function properly and safely. Regular maintenance should include checking for any signs of wear or damage, cleaning the snake drain, and oiling the moving parts.
  • Cleaning the snake drain is an important part of regular maintenance. Debris, dirt, and other materials can accumulate in the snake drain over time, which can impede its ability to drain water effectively. To clean the snake drain, disconnect it from the downspout and use a bucket or other container to catch the water as it drains out. Then, use a brush or other cleaning tool to remove any debris or blockages.
  • Proper storage of snake drains is also important to ensure that they remain in good condition. When not in use, store the snake drain in a dry, covered area to protect it from the elements. It is also a good idea to coil the snake drain into a spiral shape to prevent kinks or bends that could cause damage.

Snake Drains vs. Other Drain Cleaning Methods

Comparing Snake Drains to Chemicals and Plumbing Services

Advantages of using snake drains over chemicals

  • Snake drains are a safer and more eco-friendly option compared to chemical drain cleaners. Chemicals can be hazardous to handle and may cause damage to pipes and the environment. In contrast, snake drains use a cable with a helix-shaped end to physically break down blockages, making them a more responsible choice for homeowners and businesses alike.
  • Snake drains are also more effective at removing blockages than chemicals. While chemicals may temporarily break down the blockage, they do not always remove it entirely. Snake drains, on the other hand, can physically remove the blockage, ensuring a more permanent solution to drain problems.

Comparing snake drains to plumbing services

  • Snake drains are a cost-effective alternative to hiring a plumber. Plumbing services can be expensive, and many homeowners and businesses may not have the budget to hire a professional on a regular basis. Snake drains, however, are a DIY solution that can be used regularly to maintain drain health.
  • Snake drains are also a more convenient option compared to plumbing services. Plumbers may not always be available immediately, and scheduling an appointment can be time-consuming. With snake drains, homeowners and businesses can tackle drain problems as soon as they arise, without having to wait for a professional to become available.

Choosing the right drain cleaning method for your needs

  • When choosing a drain cleaning method, it’s important to consider the specific needs of your home or business. Snake drains are a versatile option that can be used on a variety of drain types, including pipes, drains, and traps. However, for more serious blockages or damages, it may be necessary to call in a professional plumber.
  • Homeowners and businesses should also consider the frequency of drain problems when choosing a cleaning method. If drain problems are a regular occurrence, it may be worth investing in a snake drain to save money on plumbing services in the long run. However, if drain problems are rare, a one-time use of a chemical drain cleaner or plumbing service may be sufficient.


1. What is snaking drains?

Snaking drains is a process of using a specialized tool to clear blockages in residential and commercial drainage systems. The tool, known as a drain snake or Auger, is inserted into the drain line to break up and remove the obstruction, restoring proper water flow.

2. Why is snaking drains necessary?

Snaking drains is necessary because over time, drain lines can become clogged with debris, such as hair, grease, and other organic matter. This can lead to slow or stopped up drains, which can cause water to back up and damage property, create unpleasant odors, and even attract pests.

3. How often should drains be snaked?

It is recommended to have your drains snaked regularly, particularly if you have a lot of debris or use your drains frequently. However, the frequency will depend on the specific situation and can vary from every few months to once a year or more. A professional plumber can provide guidance on the appropriate schedule for your home or business.

4. Can I do it myself?

While it is possible to purchase a drain snake and attempt to snake your own drains, it is recommended to hire a professional plumber for this task. Snaking drains can be dangerous and requires specialized knowledge and equipment. Additionally, a professional will be able to diagnose and address any underlying issues that may be causing the blockage.

5. How much does it cost to have drains snaked?

The cost of having your drains snaked will depend on several factors, including the severity of the blockage, the location of the drain, and the length of the drain line. On average, the cost can range from $100 to $400, but it is best to get a quote from a professional plumber for a more accurate estimate.

6. Are there any risks associated with snaking drains?

Yes, there are risks associated with snaking drains. The process can be dangerous and may cause injury if proper precautions are not taken. Additionally, using the wrong tool or technique can damage the drain line or cause the blockage to worsen. It is important to hire a professional plumber who has the proper training and equipment to safely and effectively snake your drains.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *