Think You Can Use Your Own Plumbing Snake? Avoid Making These Mistakes

Do you have a clog in your plumbing lines? If so, you may think that you can clear the clog on your own by renting a sewer snake. While it is entirely possible to clear a clog on your own, this is one job that may be best left to a plumber. Here are some problems you can run into when using your own sewer snake.


A plumbing snake is very flexible and can handle the twists and turns of your home's plumbing system. However, it's possible for an odd bend or angle to cause problems with a sewer snake and stop it from moving forward. You can try reversing the sewer snake before moving it forward again, but it's possible to keep getting caught around the same turn in a pipe. It can take some skill to maneuver around these troublesome turns, and you will definitely lack the experience that a professional plumber has.

One tip is to spin the sewer snake without moving it forward, which may get the snake into a different position before it moves forward. It's also possible that you're not using the right components to make the sewer snake work. You might need a cable that's thinner and can maneuver around the pipe better.


Another issue that can get the sewer snake hung up is the speed at which you are moving it. Using a sewer snake takes some patience, since you must go at a slow pace to not apply too much pressure. Going to fast with feeding the snake into the pipe may not be as effective. It's possible to just cause a clog to become displaced or leave behind parts of what is causing the clog as you push right through it.

The trick to using a sewer snake is to use slow down when you start to feel pressure. You should then turn the sewer snake's handle slowly, back the snake up a bit, and then move it forward. This technique can help break up an entire clog in the sewer line. Repeating the motion through the length of the pipe will help get rid of whatever is deep within the pipe and causing plumbing problems.

When you're not confident with how to use the plumbing snake, reach out to a local plumber for assistance. The plumber will supply the sewer snake and handle the operation, which gives you the best chance of the clog being cleared by the time they're done.