How to Deep Clean a Shower Drain Unclog and Deodorize

Kevin Brown

How to Deep Clean a Shower Drain (Unclog and Deodorize)

Turning on your shower and being hit with a rotten smell isn’t a great way to start the morning. Stinky shower drains are a common household problem.

The leading cause of shower drain odors and standing water is a build-up of hair and personal products. You can clear these clogs, disinfect, and deodorize the drain with a few DIY remedies. In some cases, clogs and odors are due to a backup of your sewer pipes and require immediate attention from a plumber.

How to Clean a Drain Clogged with Hair

How to Deep Clean a Shower Drain Unclog and Deodorize

Before disinfecting or deodorizing the drain, address clogs. The methods below are effective, although using a plumber’s snake is recommended if the clog is caused by long hair.

Clear a Shower Drain Clog with a Toilet Plunger:

A toilet plunger can also clear clogged shower drains. To unclog the shower, cover the plunger’s bell with enough water, place it over the drain, and start plunging. If the water still drains slowly, repeat the process or remove the drain cover and manually remove the clog with a plumber’s snake.

Use a Plumber’s Snake:

A plumber’s snake, resembling a wire coat hanger, can be attached to a drill.

To use a plumber’s snake, start by removing the shower drain cover. There are three types of shower drain covers: pop-up, screw-in, and toe top. Here’s how to remove each:

-Pop-Up Covers: Control these drains by pulling up and pushing down a lever on the back of the faucet. Remove pop-up drain covers by pulling them straight up, possibly wiggling gently as you do.

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-Screw-In Covers: These covers look like mesh and are attached with screws. Use the appropriate size and type of screwdriver to remove them.

To unclog your shower drain, remove the cover and insert a plumber’s snake. Run the drill to catch and remove the hair. Alternatively, try pouring boiling water down the drain after manually removing any hair.

Chemical drain openers can also be effective for clearing hair and soap build-up. If these methods don’t work, it may be time to call a plumber.

Call a plumber if you’ve tried the above methods and haven’t cleared your drain. It’s urgent to call a professional if more than one sink or shower is not draining properly, as this may indicate a severe blockage.

How to Deep Clean and Deodorize a Shower Drain (Do This Once Per Month and Every Time Your Drain Smells Bad)

Sometimes shower drains smell even if they’re not clogged. Reasons can include a build-up of bacteria in the drain pipes or, in the case of infrequently used showers, a build-up of sewer gas. Dumping boiling water usually clears the smells, but you can go further by deodorizing your shower drain with baking soda and vinegar.

To deep clean and deodorize your drain:

– Dump a pot of boiling water down the drain and allow it to cool

To refresh and deodorize your drain, follow these steps each time you clean your bathroom (skip if you’ve bleached the bathtub).

1. Place a rag over the drain hole and wait 15 minutes.

2. Rinse with a second pot of boiling water.

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For a deeper clean, use this combo to kill mold spores and deodorize your drain:

1. Add 1 cup of baking soda and 1 cup of white distilled vinegar to the drain.

2. Wait five minutes and flush with hot water.

In addition to regular cleaning, here are some tips for keeping your shower drain clean.

Avoid pouring bleach down the drain – Bleach can corrode pipes and react with other substances, creating toxicity. Discover Plumbing and Rooter advises against using bleach to clear drain clogs or kill beneficial septic system bacteria.

Avoid using chunky toiletries – The use of oatmeal soaps, exfoliating scrubs, and bath bombs with large pieces can lead to drainpipe blockages, sludge buildup, and unpleasant odors.

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