Best Drain Unblocker – A 2022 Buyers Guide

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Best Drain Unblocker

No matter how careful you are – drains can become blocked. Whether it be your toilet, the kitchen sink or your shower or bath, all drains can become blocked at some point or other! Drains are made for water, that’s a fact, but it is rare that just water is found going down them. Drains also have to face food debris, hairs, tissues and much more – which is why they can become blocked. That’s why you may find yourself needing a drain unblocker.

Drain unblockers are going to help to clear our blockages in your drains so that the water can flow freely. Drain unblockers are also going to help prevent further blockages by clearing the sides of your drains which can help to avoid further debris from becoming caught.

There are so many drain unblockers out there to choose from – finding the right one that will be safe but also effective to use can be a challenge. So we compared some of the best drain unblockers that we had found.

Our Pick Best Drain Unblocker – Pro-Kleen Sink & Drain Blitz

3 x 1 Litre of Pro-Kleen Sink & Drain Blitz - Plughole/Drain Unblocker - Dissolves Hair & Grease - Super Strength Formula: up to 12 Treatments
  • This SUPER STRENGTH Sink & Drain Unblocker is 20x stronger than other brands
  • The unique, best-selling formula that completely dissolves grease and hair clearing blocked sinks and drains
  • Up to 4 treatments per bottle when using 250ml per treatment! (Use 500ml for more severe blockages)
  • Easily clean all types of drains and sinks and restore complete efficiency - safe for ALL pipework
  • Pro-Kleen's 3 x 1 Litre bottles, Sink & Drain Blitz provides excellent value for money

Last update on 2024-05-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

In A Hurry? 

If your drains are backing up and you don’t know where to turn – you have the choice between opting for a human drain unblocker or a chemical option. Obviously, your liquid drain unblocker is going to be considerably cheaper and more convenient to use. So keep reading for all the essential information you need to know so that you can buy one as quickly as possible. 

What will the drain unblocker remove? 

By far the first thing that you need to think about is exactly what your drain unblocker is going to be able to remove and work with. Different drain unblockers will be most compatible with different types of drains, whereas the best drain unblockers will be more expensive but will be able to work anywhere in your home! Here are some of the substances you want to check for…

  • Hair – One of the main issues with drains becoming blocked is hair. Whether this be pet hair or human hair they can both be liable for a large number of drain blockages. Not only this, but due to the fact that they can knot together you will find that they can also collect other smaller pieces of debris and compact them altogether, causing a large and stubborn to remove blockage. 
  • Grease – Everytime you rinse off a pan or a baking tray, the grease that has been sat on your kitchen equipment is going to slide off down your drain. Even with the best will in the world you will find that grease sticks to your pots and pans, which then travels down your drains and sticks to them instead. As with the hair, the grease sticking to your drains will then allow other things to stick to them, which is what builds up the blockage over time. 
  • Food Waste – If you are a little quick to rinse your plates into the sink (we know that we are guilty of this one) you are bound to get little bits of food travelling down your drain. For particularly small bits of food (like peas or grains of rice) these will normally push through with the flow of the water. But larger bits of food, multiple small pieces of food, or if there is already a slight blockage down there, could lead to food waste piling up. Food waste is a particularly unpleasant blockage as it will normally release a stronger odor! 
  • Mud and outdoor waste – For anyone with pets, or that loves spending time in the garden, you will know that it can be quite a muddy past-time. From dogs that need washing down after every walk, to hands that need to clean off a day’s work, all that mud and garden debris is going to be travelling down your drain. Depending on the type of mud that you have near your home, this could easily become clogged in your system.

The strongest ingredient that you will find is caustic soda which will even be able to dissolve hairs, grease and other materials that are building up in your drains. The only issue is that this substance is VERY powerful and will damage clothes, your skin, carpets and other home surfaces if it doesn’t go directly down the drain. You will also find that it can actually damage drains if they are made from particular materials such as plastic or some types of aluminium! 

TOP TIP: If you are wanting a drain unblocker that is going to get rid of grease then you are going to need to be prepared to opt for a stronger formula as this can be one of the hardest substances to get rid of! 

How do Drain Unblockers Work? 

There are two main ways that drain unblockers work and it will be down to you to decide which is going to be best for your drain. The first is to use a thick, heavy substance to “push” the blockage through the drain and out to the wider pipes where it can then flow away. These options are usually going to be cheaper, less caustic and more environmentally friendly as they use much less chemicals. However, if the blockage is particularly bad the drain unblocker can actually make it worse as it will just “sit” behind the blockage unable to move it! 

Your second option is a melting/dissolving drain unblocker. These are going to involve much stronger chemicals so can potentially be more damaging for your drains in the long run, but they will flow down your drain pipe basically dissolving anything in their path! These are therefore a much better option for particularly thick blockages as once they are lodged with the blockage they will continue to disintegrate and dissolve anything that they come into contact with! 

Value for Money 

The best way to check whether you are purchasing a drain unblocker that is good value for money is to check the strength of the drain cleaner and the size of the container that it comes in. Some drain unblockers will literally require you to add a cap full of water to get the job done whereas others can need nearly half the bottle! This is obviously going to have a huge impact on the quality and value for money that you are purchasing! 

Dual action cleaners are going to offer fantastic value for money and we would strongly recommend these if you have a particularly difficult blockage that you are dealing with. Dual action cleaners separate the key ingredients in the unblocker so that the first solution can break down and dissolve the blockage and the second can push it through the drain and out the other side! 

Best Budget Drain Unblocker – Buster Bathroom Drain Unblocker

Buster Bathroom Plughole Unblocker – Fast-Acting Plughole Unclogger, Clears Blockages & Slow-Draining Water, 300ml
  • BATHROOM SINK UNBLOCKER: Buster Bathroom Plughole Unblocker (Pack of 1x 300ml) is the one-shot drain unblocker specially designed to blast away hair and soap scum in bathroom drains fast
  • TARGETS HAIR & SLUDGE: Buster clears bathroom plugholes from the build-up of hair, soap scum and sludge; these are the common plughole nasties that; if not treated regularly; cause the dreaded bathroom plughole blockage
  • FOR SHOWERS, BATHS & BASINS: Buster Bathroom Plughole Unblocker is specially formulated to tackle the causes of blockages inside your bathroom pipes - It’s suitable for showers, baths, sink plugholes and is safe to use on septic systems
  • STOPS SLOW DRAINING WATER & BLOCKAGES: Whether it’s a full blockage or slow draining water; Buster’s fast-acting formula gets to work in 15 minutes (for best results leave overnight); dissolving hair and clearing sludge to keep water flowing freely
  • YOUR PLUGHOLE EXPERTS: For over 30 years we’ve worked obsessively to make plughole care products that are effective and simply get the job done; from clearing and preventing blockages to cleaning and sanitising

Last update on 2024-05-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Best Drain Unblocker Features 

If you are sick of being defeated by your blocked drain and are reaching the point of no return then STOP! Here are the key features that we found in only the best drain unblockers! You’ve tried the rest so now it is time to use the best! 

  • Quick results – It is always worth looking to see how soon you can expect to see results from your drain unblocker. Obviously, this is largely going to depend on the size of the blockage in your drain, but some will get to work within about 10/15 minutes whereas others can take up to 24 hours. 
  • Measuring guide – It can be quite difficult to measure out exactly how much drain unblocker you are going to need and it is very important that you use the right amount if you aren’t wanting to do more damage to your drains! But using your own measuring jug will leave it useless for regular measuring in the kitchen! Look out for models that come with a guide either on the side of the bottle or using the cap! 
  • Compatible with pipework – It is vitally important to check whether the drain unblocker that you are purchasing is going to be compatible with the type of pipework that you have. Some will be compatible with metal pipework but not plastic and vice versa! 
  • Odourless or Odourful – This massively comes down to personal preference but you will have the choice of opting for a drain unblocker that is odourless (if you find the smells of many cleaning products quite overwhelming) or odourful (if you are sick of the smell of a blocked drain and need a freshen up). 
  • Outdoor drain unblocker – You will usually find that drain unblockers are EITHER indoor or outdoor compatible, due to the massive difference in the materials that are used to make indoor pipes and outdoor pipes. But if it is an outdoor drain unblocker that you need then there are some powerful formulas out there to break down all of your garden debris! 
  • Multipacks – For most blockages you will find that you are often going to need between around ¼ and ½ of a bottle each time (sometimes even more for particularly stubborn blocks). This means that it can often be more cost effective to purchase a multipack of drain unblockers that you can then store ready for when you need them. 
  • Gel solutions – This can be found with almost all drain unblockers now but is still worth checking for. Thick gel solutions rather than just liquid are always going to be your best options as they will cover the entire pipe wall instead of just flowing down the middle. This helps to remove any small bits of stuck debris along the way – further preventing future blockages. 
  • Safety cap – The ingredients in drain unblockers can be very dangerous if they get into the wrong hands, which is why so many now come with safety caps. These caps will stop any accidents from occurring. Not only that, but they will usually then come with a nozzle top which makes it much easier to pour the cleaner into your drain whilst avoiding any splash back that could damage your room (and clothes) if you weren’t careful! 

Best of the Rest

Mr Muscle Drain Unblocker, Sink & Drain Cleaner, Fast Acting Heavy Duty Drain Gel, Dissolves Clogs, Works 3x Better Than Bleach, Safe for All Pipes, Duo Pack (2 x 500ml)
  • POWERFUL SINK SOLUTION: This sink power unblocker is designed to destroy the toughest clogs in your drain effectively
  • POWERFUL BLOCKAGE REMOVAL: Specially formulated as a blocked drain cleaner, it effectively dissolves clogs caused by debris in sinks, plugholes, and pipes
  • LABORATORY TESTED MIGHT: 3x more effectiveness than bleach as a pipe unblocker, particularly in removing hair, *Based on hair removal in laboratory testing
  • QUICK-ACTION FORMULA: Engineered to cut through standing water quickly, this product efficiently unblocks plugholes
  • SAFE FOR ALL PIPES: Mr Muscle drain unblocker is safe and suitable for use on all types of pipes, ensuring no damage to your plumbing system

Last update on 2024-05-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Luigi's Sink and Drain Plunger for Bathrooms, Kitchens, Sinks, Baths and Showers. Small and Powerful, Commercial Style 'Plumbers Plunger' with Large Bellows
  • ✅ 𝗜𝗧 𝗖𝗟𝗘𝗔𝗥𝗦 𝗦𝗜𝗡𝗞 𝗕𝗟𝗢𝗖𝗞𝗔𝗚𝗘𝗦 𝗙𝗔𝗦𝗧: Place the large opening over your clogged plug pump it a two times. You'll clear more in 10 seconds than any other type of plunger. Guaranteed.
  • ✅ 𝗜𝗧 𝗖𝗟𝗘𝗔𝗥𝗦 𝗦𝗟𝗢𝗪 𝗔𝗡𝗗 𝗕𝗟𝗢𝗖𝗞𝗘𝗗 𝗗𝗥𝗔𝗜𝗡𝗦: Slow draining showers and baths are a common problem, the Luigi's plunger fixes it - everytime. Apply over the drain even when your shower tray is full and within a few pumps the cause of the blockage will be removed.
  • ✅ 𝗛𝗘𝗔𝗩𝗬 𝗗𝗨𝗧𝗬: The power comes from you pressing down on the bellows when it's over the plug, forcing the trapped air down the plughole. This is the same method as a traditional plunger, but with a much greater (8x) volume of air being forced down.
  • ✅ 𝗘𝗔𝗦𝗬 𝗧𝗢 𝗖𝗟𝗘𝗔𝗡: Made with 100% recycled PVC. When you're done just spray it with bleach and run it under the tap/shower.
  • ⚠️ 𝗣𝗥𝗢 𝗧𝗜𝗣: If you're clearing a sink or a bath where there is an overflow, block this with a damp cloth before you start to plunge. This stops the air from escaping and makes the process even quicker and easier.

Last update on 2024-05-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Spear and Jackson 2 x 500ml Heavy Duty Sink and Drain Unblocker
  • SPEAR AND JACKSON CLEANING PRODUCTS: Since 1760 Spear and Jackson has been selling hand, garden, contractors, agricultural, landscaping and professional tools from its base in the city of Sheffield. Their range of cleaning products are made to target tough stains, grease, grim and fat. Their Heavy Duty Outdoor Drain Unblocker is designed to clear any deposits that are blocking your sink, leaving it draining smoothly
  • HEAVY DUTY SINK UNBLOCKER: To tackle the build up on fats, foods, hair and soap residue in your bathroom or kitchen sink that is blocking your drains, Spear and Jackson's heavy duty sink and drain unblocker is specifically designed to instantly clear and dissolve the unwanted blockage quickly and efficiently
  • NO DRAIN SNAKE NEEDED: No need to waste your time with drain rods, this product requires no tools or equipment as it swiftly dissolves any build up. Ideal for the kitchen or bathroom sink, however this Heavy Duty Sink & Drain Unblocker works on exterior drains just as well. In comparison to other drain cleaners and unblockers on the market, this product has a powerful formulation that achieves results in rapid speed
  • BATHROOM CLEANING PRODUCTS: Spear and Jackson's fast acting, powerful and effective sink and drain unblocker liquid is perfectly safe to use on all pipe types. For the best results, pour the entire bottle of heavy duty drain unblocker down the plughole, leave for a minimum of 3 hours (preferably overnight) and finish off by flushing the drain with hot water for at least 2 minutes to completely free any blockages - it's really that easy!
  • SPEAR AND JACKSON: With over 250 years experience and continuous innovation, Spear and Jackson have built an enviable reputation with their market leading products that offer high quality performance tools to suit a wide range of needs. Whether you're looking to unblock your sink drain or a concentrated mould, algae and moss spray then shop Spear and Jackson range of versatile, effective and long lasting cleaning products

Last update on 2024-05-27 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I use a drain unblocker for regular maintenance on my pipework?

This largely depends on the drain unblocker that you choose to purchase. Some will be fine to be used in small amounts to ensure that your drains remain running smoothly, but others will be too strong for this and will cause damage to your pipeworks if used too regularly. 

How do I use a drain unblocker? 

The first thing to mention is that it is always important to check each manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to using drain unblockers as almost all of them are going to involve some pretty strong chemicals! But for the most part you will pour between ¼ and ½ of the bottle down your drain and leave it there for a few hours (sometimes overnight). Then, to complete the job and ensure the pipes are completely clean, pour hot water down the drain to clear it out. 

Can drain unblockers cause burns? 

Yes! Some drain unblockers can cause skin burns due to the strong chemicals that are in the solution. This means that it is important to use gloves when using a drain unblocker. If you have young children or pets we would recommend opting for a drain unblocker that will be burn-free. Drain unblockers with caustic soda are particularly dangerous so make sure to use safety goggles as well! 

Are drain rods or liquid cleaners better to unblock drains? 

There are benefits to both – a rod isn’t going to be able to make the problem worse like some unblockers can – but they can damage your pipework which is going to cause you much greater problems in the long run. Whereas drain unblocker solutions aren’t guaranteed to be able to remove the blockage and aren’t as good for the environment, but they are much easier to use and won’t leave damage on the pipes.

How often can I use drain unblocker?

Drain unblockers can be used every few months if necessary but generally should only be needed once a year to clear drains. If you find that you are having to use drain unblockers more regularly then it could be that there is a more serious blockage that needs addressing.

About Thomas Paxton 368 Articles
Hey there, I'm Thomas Paxton, your Tool Guru with a Twist! I've been knee-deep in the world of tools since I was a little tinkerer in my dad's shed. Now, I'm running my own website where I share my passion for tools and gardening products through buyers guides and insightful tips. I've got the knowledge and experience to break down complex concepts into simple, easy-to-understand language. I purchased Tools Review from Mike Jones at the start of 2023, he has done a sterling job of building the site and I hope I can continue in his success! When I'm not writing guides, you'll find me in my garden or garage, putting my skills to work and pushing the boundaries of creativity. So, whether you're a pro or just starting out, join me on this adventure, and let's conquer DIY projects together!

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