Safe and Natural DIY Drain Cleaners

Drains around the house can become clogged even with the most mundane usage, so it is a good idea to have a plan for declogging them. While drain cleaning and declogging products can be effective, they are also notorious for containing harmful chemicals. The best way to eliminate the risk to your home’s pipes and your own health is by using some of the most common household products available. Here is our guide to creating your own DIY drain cleaner.

Benefits of Natural Drain Cleaner


Woman standing in shower, cropped view of feet


If you’re a long-time user of commercial drain cleaners and decloggers, that’s perfectly fine, but you should be aware of the risks that come with these products. Most chemical cleaners contain sodium hydroxide or sulfuric acid, both of which are strong but damaging chemicals. Using cleaners containing these chemicals can cause your pipes to corrode, creating a very big and very expensive problem for you. To avoid causing a huge headache for your future self, consider switching to a natural and eco-friendly drain cleaner. These are safer to use around kids and pets AND they won’t break the bank, sounds like a pretty good deal to us! For more info, you can check out the FAQ below.


DIY Drain Solutions


Here is a list of our favorite DIY drain cleaners and solutions. They can all be made from regular household products or can be purchased for a reasonable price!


1. Soap & Hot Water

Hot water and dish soapThis is the most simple and straightforward method for declogging and degreasing your drain. All you will need for this is:

  • 2 tablespoons of dish soap
  • A pot of water

For this method, start by filling a pot with water and adding the dish soap. Boil the water and then immediately pour the hot soapy water down the drain. This method is great for greasy clogs or just for cleaning out your pipes after accidentally pouring fats or liquid grease down the drain. Remember to avoid this by allowing the grease or fat to cool before throwing it away, not pouring it down the drain.


2. Baking Soda & Vinegarvinegar and baking soda

All you’ll need for this DIY cleaner is:

  • ½ cup of baking soda
  • ½ cup of white vinegar
  • A pot of water

To use this solution, carefully pour the baking soda down the open drain. Next, you’ll want to pour the vinegar down the drain. Once the vinegar meets the baking soda the reaction will begin, so remember to cover the drain quickly. Let the baking soda and vinegar do their thing for about an hour, and boil a pot of water. Uncover the drain, and then flush the solution by pouring the boiling water down the drain. Note: You may need to repeat the process to fully clear the drain.


3. Baking Soda & Lemon Juice

This is a very similar process to the previous solution, but it smells way better! You’ll need:

  • ½ cup of baking soda
  • ½ cup of lemon juice
  • A pot of water

First, pour the baking soda down the drain then follow it with the lemon juice. Cover the drain and wait about an hour for the solution to work. Boil a pot of water and, after an hour, uncover the drain and pour the water. Repeat as needed.


4. Baking Soda & Salt

baking soda and salt

This particular method works best for a clog and works pretty well for degreasing the drain. For this you’ll need:

  • ½ cup of regular table salt
  • ½ cup of baking soda
  • A pot of water

This is an interesting solution as it uses 2 dry ingredients, but trust us on this. Start by pouring the salt down the clogged drain, and then follow with the baking soda. Allow this to work for a minimum of about 30 minutes, or overnight if you are dealing with a stubborn clog. After your desired waiting time, boil a pot of water and then pour the water directly down the drain. This should flush the drain, but if not you may need to consider using an alternative to aid the process.


5. Baking Soda, Salt, & Cream of Tartar

cream of tartar, baking soda and salt

For this DIY drain cleaner and declogger, you’ll be creating a dry powder. Here are the ingredients:

  • ½ cup baking soda
  • ½ cup regular table salt
  • 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar
  • A pot of water

Pour all of these ingredients into a sealable jar, cover it, and shake it to combine and mix everything together. This will create enough mix for 2 uses. Either pour or use a spoon to distribute half of this mix down the drain. Boil a pot of water and dump it down the drain after the mix. Once the water has been poured, allow the solution to work for about an hour. Once the full hour has passed, run the tap to clear the drain of any remaining solution. You can use the remaining dry mix if you need to further clear the drain.


6. Salt, Borax, & Vinegar

salt, borax and vinegar

This DIY solution is great for declogging, cleaning, and even deodorizing your drains as Borax is a great product with tons of uses. For this recipe, you’ll need:

  • ¼ cup of regular table salt
  • ¼ cup Borax
  • ½ cup of white vinegar
  • A pot of water

To start, pour the salt and then the Borax down the drain. Next, pour the vinegar steadily down the drain followed by a pot of boiling water. Allow this to sit in the drain for about an hour, or longer if the drain hasn’t fully cleared. You can clear and test the drain by running the hot water tap and rinsing any remaining bit of the solution. If the drain hasn’t fully cleared, you can try this method again.




Does homemade drain cleaner work?


hrome bathroom tap over a white bathroom sink. Tap running.


Homemade drain cleaner works to remove almost all types of clogs. However, if you are unsure or have a particularly large or stubborn clog it is always in your best interest to consult a trustworthy plumber. Asking a professional before attempting to unclog a drain yourself can save you time and a plumbing bill.


What is the most natural way to clean your drain?


The most effective and natural way to clean your drain is with baking soda, vinegar, and hot water. This can help you clean and deodorize a clogged drain, but remember that you may have to resort to something stronger or call in a professional plumber if this doesn’t work.


Can homemade drain cleaner dissolve hair?


Loose hair in the sink drain in the bathroom


Baking soda and vinegar is the best homemade solution for removing hair clogs from drains. The key ingredient is baking soda, but you can also use a small amount of hydrogen peroxide to break down any large hairballs within the drain. Remember to flush the drain with hot water after using any homemade cleaners.


How often should you use drain cleaner?


You should use drain cleaner and or declogger at least once a month to prevent any buildup within your pipes. Whether you use a natural DIY cleaner or a commercial enzyme cleaner, be sure to always flush your drain with hot water after cleaning it.


When should you not use drain cleaner?


You should not use drain cleaner when you know your home has old or damaged plumbing and pipes. Prolonged use of chemical cleaners can lead to pretty extensive damage by corroding metal pipes and even warping plastic pipes. Make sure that if you have to use a cleaner with strong chemicals, you only use it once and immediately clear the pipes with hot water.


What happens if you don’t clean your drains?


Man plunging a blocked kitchen sink with a manual suction plunger.


Not cleaning your drains can cause large clogs and blockages within your pipes. Cleaning your drains also reduces bad smells, can improve water quality, and increases the life of your pipes saving you from the headache of having to call in a plumber to clear some nasty buildup.


Homemade drain cleaners are a great alternative to using harsh chemical cleaners that can damage your pipes. Even the simplest ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, and lemon juice can be highly effective when cutting through greasy clogs. In order to prevent any buildup or clogs within your drains and pipes, it is recommended that you flush your drains once a month with boiling water.


Do you have any DIY drain cleaners that you swear by? Tell us about your drain cleaning tips and tricks in the comments below, we love hearing from you! If you’re looking for a great cleaning service that can help you clean up around your home and even deep clean and sanitize around the kitchen and bathrooms, check out our website to book your cleaning services today. We offer a wide range of cleaning services and even offer eco-friendly services upon request.


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