Types of Shower Drain Plungers

Written by scottm
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Types of Shower Drain Plungers
A clogged shower drain calls for a plunger. (down the drain image by pix29 from Fotolia.com)

Shower drains can be one of the trickier drains and sets of pipes to get unclogged. The flat opening to the drain as well as the often hidden pipes can cause a bit more dismay for people unfamiliar with unclogging a blockage. The first step, if possible, is to remove whatever drain cover there might be over the shower drain. This will allow for better suction and airflow when using a plunger or snake. After the cover is removed, you can better decide on which type of plunger will work best.

Shower/Sink Plunger

The shower/sink plunger is the typical plunger used for drains that have a round flat opening. A sink plunger is often a red or black rubber cup attached to a typically wooden handle. This plunger has the ability to force pressure two ways -- positively when forcing the handle down and directing pressure at the blockage, and negatively when pulling the handle in the opposite direction and suction is created pulling at the blockage. It is best to have the shower partially filled with water because it will create more pressure. Also, if there is an overflow hole, for instance like there would be in a bathroom, make sure to cover it when plunging. This type of plunger only varies in the size of the rubber cup and the length of the handle. It is normally the cheapest and most-effective plunger available for regular home use.

Taze Plunger

Taze plungers are the big guns of the plunger world. It is often called the "plumber's plunger" because it's not a commonly found tool in most homes. A taze plunger consists of a metal disk and a steel rod. The disk is the same size as the internal pipe diameter (one of the many reasons regular people don't have them) and is forced into and through the clogged pipe, creating a high-pressure zone. This plunger is recommended for professional use.

Air-operated plunger

An air-operated plunger works by forming a suction seal and then forcing pressurised air into the blocked pipe. It has a similar looking rubber cup on one end like the sink plunger, but rather than being attached to a wooden rod, it is attached to an air pump. The air pump looks similar to one you'd use to fill a basketball or a bicycle tire. According to Plumber's Help, this plunger/pump is considered more of a gimmick. It doesn't come highly recommended.

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