How to Unclog a Shower Drain

absolute plumbing Inc.

Back to Blog

Shower Drain

How to Unclog a Shower Drain

Dealing with a clogged shower drain can be frustrating. Water pooling at your feet during a shower isn’t just inconvenient; it can also indicate a deeper plumbing issue. Fortunately, there are several methods you can try before calling in the professionals. This guide from Absolute Plumbing will walk you through various techniques on how to unclog a shower drain, ensuring your drainage system works smoothly.

1. Start with Boiling Water

Often, a simple and effective first step to unclog a shower drain is using boiling water. Boil a large pot of water and carefully pour it down the drain. This method works best if the clog is caused by soap scum or grease, as the hot water can melt away the blockage. It’s a quick fix that might save you time and effort.

2. Try Baking Soda and Vinegar

If boiling water doesn’t do the trick, you can turn to a tried and true combination: baking soda and vinegar. Here’s how to unclog a shower drain with these household staples:

  • Pour one cup of baking soda down the drain.
  • Follow with one cup of white vinegar.
  • Allow the mixture to fizz and work its magic for about 15 minutes.
  • Rinse with more boiling water to clear out the mixture and any loosened debris.

This natural method is safe for your pipes and the environment, making it a great option for routine maintenance and mild clogs.

3. Use a Plunger

A plunger can be an effective tool to unclog a shower drain, especially if the clog is close to the surface. Make sure you have a good seal around the drain before you start plunging. A few vigorous pushes can help dislodge blockages made of hair or soap.

4. Clear the Drain with a Plumber’s Snake

A plumber’s snake, or a drain auger, is a flexible coil of wire that can navigate through the twists and turns of drain pipes. Insert the snake into the drain and push it down until you feel resistance. Rotate the handle to catch the clog and pull it out. This method is particularly effective for more stubborn clogs that are situated deeper within the drain pipe.

5. Check the Strainer or Stopper

Many shower drains have a strainer or stopper in place to prevent hair and other large particles from entering the pipes. Sometimes, simply cleaning the strainer or stopper can resolve the issue. Remove it and clear out any debris that’s accumulated there, then wash it with warm, soapy water before putting it back.

6. Chemical Drain Cleaners

If other methods fail, you might consider using a chemical drain cleaner. However, use these products cautiously as they can sometimes damage plumbing if used improperly. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and opt for cleaners that are safe for your type of plumbing.

7. Maintenance Tips to Prevent Future Clogs

  • Regularly clean your drain stopper or strainer.
  • Avoid letting hair and soap scum build up in your shower drain.
  • Use a drain guard to catch hair before it goes down the drain.
  • Flush your drain with boiling water or a vinegar and baking soda mix monthly to keep it clear.

8. When to Call a Professional

If you’ve tried all the above methods and your shower drain is still clogged, it might be time to call in the experts. Persistent clogs may indicate more serious plumbing issues that require professional tools and skills.


Unclogging a shower drain can often be handled at home with basic tools and ingredients. However, if you find yourself facing a stubborn clog or recurrent issues, it might be indicative of a deeper problem. In such cases, it’s important to consult a professional to ensure your plumbing system is functioning properly.

At Absolute Plumbing, we’re here to help with all your plumbing and drain needs. Our experienced team is equipped to handle any issue, ensuring your plumbing is in optimal condition. Contact us today for any plumbing services you require in your home. We’re here to ensure your plumbing issues are solved quickly and efficiently!