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Vinegar: The Magical Drain Cleaner

Vinegar and baking soda

It’s not always feasible to call a plumber for a clogged drain, and although there are a variety of drain-cleaning products on the market, some chemicals can be harsh on your pipes. Fortunately, there’s a DIY option that most homeowners already have on hand: plain vinegar.

Whether it’s a kitchen sink, bathroom sink, or shower drain that’s giving you trouble, the acidic nature of vinegar—especially when combined with baking soda for a foaming reaction—packs a powerful punch. Not only can the baking soda and vinegar combination break down clogs, but according to Heinz spokesperson Michael Mullen, a 5% solution of vinegar can kill up to 99% of bacteria. This makes vinegar a natural deodorizer!

To clean a drain with vinegar and baking soda, try the following:

To unclog your drain, start by pouring approximately ¾ to 1 cup of baking soda down the drain, making sure to push the powder into the drain manually if needed. Then, pour ½ cup of vinegar into the drain and immediately cover it with a small plate to prevent the reaction from foaming out of the drain.

Let the mixture sit for about 30 minutes, without using the sink. Afterward, uncover the drain and turn on the hot water to help push everything through. For especially stubborn clogs, repeat the process as necessary.

By keeping vinegar and baking soda on hand, you can regularly sanitize, deodorize, and unclog your drains safely and easily without causing any damage.

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