Residential Space A creative outlet during residency, turned ongoing virtual soap box

Posted on Thursday, June 25th, 2009 at 7:46 pm. About Conservation.

The tub now drains!!

…and I did not have to use Drain-O or another toxic chemical formula to do it. Check this out.

The water had been draining more slowly by the day, troubling me as I faced the decision: living near Puget Sound, home to whales, salmon, and other amazing wildlife, did I really feel right about pouring toxic chemicals down my drain to clear the blockage? I have in the past, but the four years of living in Seattle had finally gotten to me – the guilt was too much. Surely there was a way to clear this in a non-offensive way.

I went to the internet for advice. Universally, sites encouraged me to clear the blockage mechanically. I unscrewed the plug in the tub to find grating beneath it, and yes – there was a lot of gross stuff that I will not describe, but definitely a proximal blockage. I tried bending a coat hanger to get through the metal slats to break it up and dislodge it, but I only retrieved about 20% of it. I thought maybe I had destabilized it, and perhaps it would clear now just with water. After running water through it, things still drained slowly, and nothing budged.

Next, a website suggested something interesting – pouring 1/2 cup baking soda down there, waiting 15 minutes, and adding 1/2 cup vinegar. Hmmm…okay, I thought, picturing the experiment in fifth grade with the volcano “erupting” as a result of this chemical reaction. BUT IT WORKED. After giving the reaction a few minutes to work, I then poured water down the drain, and it very rapidly disappeared. Mission accomplished. And two months later, the drain is still beautifully clear!

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