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Make Your Own Water Jet Cleaner To Clear Slow Drains With A Garden Hose

Slow drains that are either partially or completed clogged can be a continual source of exasperation for homeowners. While there are a number of chemicals and devices on the market for treating slow drains, some of them are unsafe for homeowners to use and many others just don't work. However, the good news is that homeowners can safely and effectively treat slow drains by using a simple, water jet cleaner they can make in just a few minutes. Below is how it can be done:

Tools and materials you will need

  • Barbed hose fitting - you will need an adapter with a standard 3/4-inch female garden hose thread on one end and a  3/8-inch barbed male fitting on the opposite end.
  • PVC tubing (3/8-inch inside diameter) - this tubing is available in transparent PVC, and you will need 6 feet.
  • Hose clamp (3/4-inch)
  • Rubber hose washer
  • Garden hose
  • Screwdriver
  • Wire brush
  • Adjustable pliers
  • Small bucket or container

Step-by-step procedure

1. Attach the barbed male fitting to the hose - the first step in putting together your drain water jet cleaner is to screw the barbed hose fitting on to the male end of a standard garden hose. Since you will be using this device inside your home, you want to be sure the connection is watertight and leakproof. 

First, clean the male threads on the garden hose with a wire brush to remove soil, mold, corrosion or other residue. Next, place a rubber hose washer into the space between the barbed fitting and the garden hose. Screw the barbed hose fitting onto the male garden hose threads until the connection is handtight; if it leaks, tighten it one-quarter of a turn with a pair of adjustable pliers.

2. Attach the PVC tubing to the barb - once you have attached the fitting to the hose and determined the connection to be watertight, then push one end of the 3/8-inch PVC tubing onto the barb. Be sure to push the tubing completely down to the end of the fitting. 

Next, pass the hose clamp over the end of the PVC tubing, and slide it into position over the tubing and barb. Hold the clamp in place, and tighten it with a screwdriver until the clamp grips the barb firmly. Be sure it is tight, but don't cut the hose with the clamp.

3. Prepare the drain for cleaning - remove the stopper or grate over the top of the slow drain to provide better access to the drain pipe. Do not run water or you may obscure the drain. Clear out any standing water with a bucket or other container.

4. Position the water jet cleaner - attach the female end of the water hose to a spigot. Position the cleaner above the drain and slowly insert the tubing down into the drain pipe. Push the tubing as far as possible down into the pipe but avoid binding or crimping the tube.

5. Turn on the spigot - while holding the tubing in position in the drain pipe, ask a helper to slowly turn on the spigot. Start moving the tubing up and down within the drain pipe so that it can begin clearing the clog. If the water in the tub or sink basin becomes too high, then ask your helper to turn off the water flow at the spigot and scoop out water with your container.

6. Clear the drain - continue moving the tubing up and down in the drain while periodically scooping out the water. Eventually, the water will begin to drain on its own as the jet cleaner clears up the clog. If the drain is subject to frequent clogging, perform periodic cleaning with the jet cleaner to remove clogs as they form.\

If this method doesn't work, it may be time to contact professional drain cleaning services