Stopped up plumbing can be a large issue. It could be a shower, a sink, or a tub. It could be in your kitchen or bathroom. No matter the exact location, a clogged drain is a huge inconvenience. We’ve published other posts about plunging and different methods of cleaning, but in this post we’ll explain the best way to use a plumber’s snake. This tool can reach deep down to pull out the clogs that are stopping up your drain.


A plumbing snake is a long, flexible piece of metal that can be sent down your drain to pull up the gunk that’s clogging it. Unlike your plunger, the sharp hooks on the snake can physically pull heavy clumps of hair or other scum right out.


  1. Towel and trash: Snaking a drain can be a messy and smelly process. Make sure you’re prepared! Lay out a towel next to the area you’re working in and have a trash bag handy for when you get the gunk out. A pair of rubber gloves aren’t a bad idea either.
  2. Start the snake: Make sure to remove any drain caps or anything else that could get in the way. Then, find the tip of the metal snake and insert it into your drain. Once in place, slowly lower it into the drain as far as it will go.
  3. Ready to rotate: Once the snake is fully inserted, it’s time to start cranking. Rotate the snake with a small amount of steady pressure so that the hooks on the snake can catch the hair, soap scum, and other sludge that’s trapped inside the drain. Don’t pull too hard, or it may rip right out!
  4. Get the gunk: Once you’ve got a good grasp, move the snake back and forth and start to pull out some of the gunk. Keep rotating, and you’ll eventually loosen all the build-up and either pull it up, or it will wash down.
  5. Know your nose: Warning: what comes out of your drain can smell bad. Enough to potentially make you vomit. Once that dirt and hair ball is up, be prepared. Pull it off the snake and put it in the trash bag immediately.
  6. Time to test: Turn on the water and see if it goes down the drain as it should. If it does, you’ve successfully snaked a drain!


If your snaking expedition didn’t clear your drain – it’s probably time to call a professional plumber. Trenchless Replacement Specialists offers expert residential and commercial plumbing services and can help find the clog, clear it, or even lay new pipe if needed. Make an appointment online, or call us at 432-580-7693. No Mess, No Stress!