Though plunging a clogged drain may seem like a routine task, it becomes infinitely more efficient and productive when you use the right kind of plunger.
So, that begs two questions:
- How many of the three basic types do you have on hand?
- Why should you stock up if you don’t have at least one of which?
Let’s take a closer look at these plungers, and what each one is designed for.
Types of Plungers
- Cup Plunger: The classic wooden handled, red rubber bell plunger is most often called the cup plunger. Though this style works great for larger flat drains (like a tub, shower, floor, or even some sinks), the large, flat opening makes it difficult to create a tight seal over a toilet drain.
- Flange Plunger: When it comes to clearing a toilet clog, reach for your flange plunger. Its unique design is characterized by the narrow flange (or opening). Smaller is better when it comes to forming a tight seal around a toilet bowl opening or other small drains with a curved surface.
- Bellows Plunger: The less common bellows plunger has a spring-like head and multiple pleats – just like an accordion – to give it extra plunging power. It can also be used effectively when you’re plunging from an angle vs. straight up and down.
How to Use a Plunger
Here are a few plunging tips, regardless of which type you might be using:
- Don’t plunge after pouring harsh chemicals down a drain or toilet. It’s way too easy to injure your skin or eyes. You could even accidentally ingest an unhealthy dose of that poison.
- Empty the sink, bowl, etc., of excess water before plunging to avoid sloshing water around in every which direction.
- Seat the plunger head so that it completely covers the drain opening, and let any trapped air escape before you get to work. That will create a tight vacuum and give you extra water pressure for better results.
Of course, even if you have the right plunger for every drain job, plunging won’t always work, and for any number of reasons. If and when that happens to you, contact the plumbing and drain cleaning pros at Plumbtastic for a “thumbs up” service experience.