5 Tools Every Homeowner Should Have For Basic Drain Cleaning & Plumbing

5 Tools Every Homeowner Should Have For Basic Drain Cleaning & Plumbing

Most people don’t think about plumbing or drains at all when they’re working well, but when they’re not, they can ruin your day. We don’t realize how much we rely on our drains and plumbing until there’s a problem!

Thankfully, by having a few basic plumbing tools on hand, the average homeowner can tackle many drain and plumbing problems themselves!


The first tool you should turn to whenever you have a clogged drain is a plunger! 

When most people think of a plunger, they picture the classic cup plunger, which is basically just a rubber cup on the end of a stick. A cup plunger has a flat end and is best used for drains that are level with the surrounding area. 

A flange plunger, on the other hand, has a protruding middle part that helps the plunger form a tighter seal on drains that are recessed below the surrounding area.

Our favourite for tough jobs is the accordion plunger, which has a bigger, collapsible bellows. This allows it to move much more air or water than a regular plunger, making it the most effective plunger for use on tough clogs. 

Hair Clog Remover

A hair clog remover is another plumbing tool every homeowner should have.

If you’ve never heard of it before, a hair clog remover is basically a long, thin piece of plastic with little teeth on it. It’s great for pulling clumps of hair out of bathroom sinks, tubs, and showers. Home improvement stores sell them for just a few dollars each.

Drain Snake/Auger

If your toilet’s clogged, and you’re not able to clear it with a plunger, your next step is to use a drain snake or auger. 

You can buy a toilet auger at any home improvement store. Used properly, augers are very effective at unblocking toilets. Done improperly, though, augering your toilet can scratch the porcelain, so use it with care!

Home improvement stores also rent power augers similar to the ones our technicians use, but we actually don’t recommend that homeowners use them. We get several calls every month from homeowners who have broken auger cables inside their drains. Usually, we’re able to get them out fairly quickly, but sometimes we have to jackhammer the floor and dig up the pipe to remove a broken auger cable.

Duct Tape

Ah, the holy grail of all DIYers! If you’ve got a leaking drain pipe, duct tape can be used as a temporary solution until a permanent fix can be made. Just don’t forget to actually do the permanent fix!

If you have a leaking water line (a pipe that’s bringing water to a fixture, as compared to a drain, which takes it away from a fixture), duct tape isn’t a good temporary solution, even temporarily. Instead, find the shutoff valve for that water line, turn off its water supply, and then call a professional plumber to replace the leaking pipe.

Sink/Drain Strainers

Ok, these aren’t actually tools, but they still deserve a place on this list. Strainers catch food waste, hair, and other debris before it has a chance to go into your drains and cause problems. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Keeping strainers in your drains can prevent annoying and inconvenient drain problems in the future.

“Even the best-laid plans go awry” is true even in the plumbing world! Sometimes, even being prepared with the above suggestions you may get stumped! That’s okay! For residential drain cleaning in Calgary, give SOS Drain Cleaning a call for the issues you just can’t fix on your own!

Contact Us Today

For fast, affordable drain cleaning, clog removal, and plumbing, reach out to SOS Drain Cleaning.

Contact us today by calling us at (403) 295-8989 or by filling out our contact form.