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It’s a nightmare many homeowners have dealt with at some point in their lives: stepping into their shower, turning on the water and finding themselves up to their ankles in standing water because the drain is flowing slowly or won’t drain at all.
This is a problem that doesn’t require a drain cleaning service to diagnose: it’s because of hair clogging the drains. But why does hair end up finding its way to the drains of your shower and force you to look up the number for a good service before enjoying your shower again? There are actually several reasons, so let’s break them down so you know what’s going on and can try to prevent it!
Your Hair Expands When Wet
Have you ever noticed how long the hairs are in a drain clog when you’re able to pull a clog out without the help of a drain cleaning service? It’s no accident — it’s because that’s just what hair naturally does in water. When your hair gets wet, it can expand to up to 30% longer than its normal size.
This means a couple things for your drain. First, it’s not only women who clog the shower drain with their hair. If you’re a man, you might have noticed the long hairs in the drain and assumed that it’s your wife, girlfriend or daughter who’s responsible for needing a drain cleaning service, but the reality is that you could be just as responsible. Even pet hair that gets on your body and then gets removed in the shower could be the culprit.
That’s because of the second point: that extra 30% can make it much harder for hair to go down the drain. When hair expands in size, its shape can change too, making it difficult to fit down a tiny drain hole. Even if your hair was only half an inch long, that extra 1/6 of an inch can really make it difficult to go down the drain — and if you’re showering daily like most people should, that hair in the drain never gets a chance to dry.
You’re Losing Hair Every Day
Plus, that hair is going to be joined by others quite soon, because no matter what age you are, you’re regularly losing strands of hair. If you’re an average adult with a normal head of hair, you’re going to end up losing between 50 and 150 strands of hair in a standard day spent in your house. Your body is constantly replenishing lost hair for most of your life, so most people don’t notice those strands.
Chances are, some of those lost strands of hair will find their way to the drain, furthering your need to call for a drain cleaning service. When you’re showering daily, if even one-third of your lost strands of hair find their way to the shower drain, you’re going to be adding roughly 350 strands of hair per day to your drain.
Given that those strands aren’t going to contract to their dry size, this equation only has one possible outcome — the need for you to contact a service in Myrtle Beach, SC and fix the problem quickly.
Your Hair Is a Hotbed for Oils
Even if you rarely cleaned out your shower drain, your hair wouldn’t always be able to clog a drain on its own. That’s because most drains are big enough underneath the small hole that even a ball of nothing but hair wouldn’t last long in the drain if there was nothing else in it. If drains were filled with just hair and water, no drain cleaning service would be necessary.
But if you’ve ever taken a shower, you know that there’s no such thing as a drain filled with just hair and water. For instance, if you use soap, that’s going to find its way to the drain. The shampoo that you use on your hair will find its way down the drain, and the oils that made your hair feel greasy in the first place and necessitated cleaning your hair will end up down the drain.
Those substances will combine and form unsightly clogs that will usually require the help of a drain cleaning service to remove them properly. You can sometimes remove a clog with your own hands or tools…but would you really want to after all of those substances have combined in the shower?
How Can I Prevent Hair Clogs?
The easiest way to keep the drain clear at your Myrtle Beach, SC home is to check it on a regular basis and block it from absorbing anything but water. A drain strainer is a great way to block larger deposits from entering your drain, and all you’ll have to do to clear things out after your shower is dump what was collected into the wastebasket.
If you’re worried about your budget and don’t want to spend the money on a drain cleaning service right now, you should know that drain strainers are very inexpensive and will usually work for quite a while, allowing you to save up and avoid an extra expense before you’re ready for it to occur.
Be warned, however, that while drain strainers are a great way to avoid clogs, they’re not a 100 percent failsafe. Sometimes, hair will still get through a drain strainer, and if that happens, it’s important to have a reliable drain cleaning service available to fix the problem and get the pipes moving again.
At Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, we hope that you’ll be able to keep your pipes clean and won’t have a need for us to come out to your home for an emergency. But if you do find yourself needing a drain cleaning service for your Myrtle Beach home, we’re here and happy to help provide a solution to a bad situation. Contact us to get assistance and make hair clogs a thing of the past!