Snaking Your Way out of Plumbing Trouble: Learn to Use a Drain Auger in 4 Simple Steps

Snaking Your Way out of Plumbing Trouble: Learn to Use a Drain Auger in 4 Simple Steps 1

Easily one of the most effective and most beneficial tools in the plumbing industry is a Drain Auger, commonly referred to as a ‘snake.’ However, the apparatus can only be as good as the person who knows how to use, so today we aim to help you get the job done correctly.

In fact, we’ve broken down the process into just four simple steps, detailing everything you need to know to use a drain auger effectively and to the best of your abilities. Here we go!

1 – Preparing Your Work Area

The absolute first thing you’ll want to do is to make sure you’re preparing the area where you’re going to introduce the drain auger. Of course, a drain auger works by gripping the clog blocking your drain and then allowing you to remove it.

If successful, this has the potential to cause quite a lot of mess, which means it’s important for you to put down a covering and remove anything that you don’t want to get messy. Covering the floor is also a good idea.

2 – Prepare Your Drain

Most drains will have some kind of cover on them, perhaps a grill or fencing, so your first step is to gain access to the drain by removing this piece. Make sure you’re doing it safely and remembering where all the screws and bolts go so that you can piece everything back together accurately.

3 – Use the Drain Auger

Once you’re all set up and ready to go, the next step involves inserting the drain auger into the drain itself. You’ll need to feed the auger in slowly and carefully, and when the end reaches what you think is the blockage, you’ll have to rock the auger back and forth to make sure you’re actually there.

Then, simply try and slowly pull out the blockage. Do this carefully to ensure you’re pulling out as much as possible and leaving no residue of the blockage behind. If you’re unable to get a firm grip of the obstruction, you can instead work the other way and try and break the blockage down, turning into little pieces that you can then flush away on the next step.

4 – Removing the Auger

Once you’re happy you’ve removed most of the blockage using the technique above, you’ll be able to flush the toilet or drain for the next five minutes using hot water. You’ll want to have placed your auger with the blockage on an old rag and then dispose of as quickly as possible.

If you’re flushing the hot water down the drain and it’s not backing up, you’ll have cleared the blockage, and the job will be done. If you’re still getting some kind of backlog, you’ll need to reapply the auger and repeat the steps again until the drain is unclogged. If you can’t, you’ll need to invest in plumbing services who will be able to help you.


As you can see, using a drain auger isn’t necessarily a difficult job, but it does take a little bit of skill and practice to get right. Make sure you’re taking your time and being accurate with what you do to get the best results.

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