family plumbing awareness

family plumbing awareness

How to Remove Biofilm from Your Drains

Patsy Peterson

If every drain in your home smells foul, they could be filled with biofilm. Biofilm is a slimy buildup of bacteria and other organic substances. Biofilm not only gives off foul odors, but it can also clog up plumbing fixtures. Learn how you can remove the biofilm in your drains below.

Flush Away the Biofilm With Hot Water and Vinegar

Try using boiling water and white household vinegar to flush out each drain in your house. Some sources recommend using boiling water to remove stubborn plumbing clogs. When combined with vinegar, boiling water may be helpful in this situation as well. 

Follow the instructions below to clean out one drain at a time:

  1. Slowly and cautiously pour one kettle or pot of boiling water down the drain.
  2. Gently pour one cup of vinegar down the drain, then wait a few minutes for the acid in the vinegar to break down the biofilm.
  3. Carefully pour one kettle or pot of boiling water down the drain to complete the flush.

If the odor in your drains goes away, you don't need to try anything else at this time. If the odor remains or gets worse, call a plumber.

Give Each Drain a Professional Cleaning

If the biofilm inside your drains is thick, it may take more than boiling water and vinegar to remove it completely. In this case, a plumber will need to clear the drains in your home with professional methods, such as a canister auger. If debris is packed deep inside the drains or their pipes, a canister auger will reach it.

If an auger isn't sufficient enough to break down and remove the biofilm in your drains or pipes, a plumbing contractor may use chemical or liquid enzymes instead. The enzymes may consume the bacterial residue inside your drains, or they may dissolve it. Not all plumbers use liquid enzymes to clean drains. Some plumbers use powder enzymes, stick enzymes, and other methods instead. 

As previously mentioned, if biofilm formed deep inside the pipes, it can cause odors to permeate out of your drains and into your house. Biofilm can also become a big issue if it clogs up your plumbing pipes. A plumber may use a variety of cleaning methods to clean out the pipes in your house. 

If you need help removing or cleaning the biofilm from your drains, contact a plumber for drain cleaning services today.


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About Me
family plumbing awareness

Keeping your home's plumbing system in good working order is a family job. Have you taught your kids what should never be flushed down the toilets or poured down the drains? Do your kids know what to watch for to know that there is a plumbing problem that needs to be addressed? If your kids know what to look for, they will be less likely to contribute to making a minor plumbing problem more serious. This blog will show you things that you should teach your kids so that everyone can work together to protect the entire plumbing system in your home.