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Saving Made Simple: Homemade drain cleaner

I have been known around the office for the past couple of years for my coupon savings but now I may be known for my frugal, homemade cleansers.

Recently the sink here in our break room has been draining really slow. As in, standing water that  slowly seeps out. Someone picked up a bottle of super strength drain cleaner and we tried that. It drained a little better but still very slowly. I volunteered to bring in the ingredients for my frugal drain cleaner the next day.

I arrived on Tuesday armed with my baking soda, white vinegar and Dawn dish liquid. Here is my method that I read on the internet a few years ago.

½ cup baking soda
½ cup vinegar
(actually I don't measure it any more – I just sort of eyeball it. I measured it the first time.)

Pour the baking soda in the drain followed by the vinegar. It foams up when mixed together. Remember middle school science class experiments? Let it do it's work for a little while, say 20 minutes or so.

Next, mix 4 cups of really hot water (I heat it in the microwave) and a few squirts of Dawn. Quickly pour this down the sink. Have a plunger ready to plunge while the water drains.  I have purchased a small sink plunger that is really handy. Repeat the process as many times as needed. I often repeat the hot water part a couple of times before I completely start over. When the drain clears you will hear the swoosh of the clog clearing.

Our sink here took three treatments but it is running clear now.

So, how does this tie into Savings Made Simple?
First, I have all the ingredients on hand so if the bathroom sink or tub is clogged at 10 p.m. I'm not making a trip out to buy drain cleaner, which saves me time and money.
Second, I'm not spending the extra money to pour caustic chemicals down my drain, which saves me money and helps the environment.