Pros:cleaned my drain really quickly
Cons:supposedly one time use, need goggles and gloves to be safe
The Bottom Line: The Zip-It Drain Cleaning Tool made quick work of unclogging a clogged drain for only $1.98. Beat that, Turbo Snake!
For some reason, my sink in the master bedroom always seems to have drainage issues. It's not like I have long hair that I deliberately brush into the sink and down the drain or I squeeze tubes of toothpaste into the sink to harden. All I know is that ever since we moved into our home over nine years ago, that sink has been nothing but trouble.
Nothing has seemed to help. I've tried those dreaded and much maligned drain cleaners with no success. I've removed the stopper (which requires cleaning out under the sink, placing a bedpan from the hospital under the trap, unscrewing a lever and cleaning up a lot of water as well as replacing said lever which always takes three or more attempts to reposition correctly) to use a small snake. I've tried a plunger. I've even fashioned a homemade drain cleaning tool out of a wire coat hanger to shove down the drain. Nothing worked.
I was about to call in a plumber when I saw two things on television on the same day. The first was a home improvement show which discussed removing the trap to clean the sucker out. I thought, "Hmmm, maybe there is concrete in my trap - might not be a bad idea to find out if one of the kids actually did squeeze an entire tube of Crest down there - maybe some Fixodent too though Lord knows where they would have found that as I'm still too young for dentures..." I put a pipe wrench on my next Home Depot/Lowes shopping list.
Next, I saw an advertisement for something called the Turbo Snake where you simply shove this velcro-covered wire down the drain, without the rigamorole of removing the stopper, and it pulls out all the gunk. Pretty cool. Easier than a pipe wrench too.
I was not about to pay $19.99 plus sipping and handling for a Turbo Snake. I know, I know, But WAIT there's more - you get TWO Turbo Snakes plus a special trip to the prize drawer. I only have one sink and do not need two Turbo Snakes. I'm not even sure I need one.
As I was placing an order on Amazon, I looked up the Turbo Snake which had mixed reviews. There was a gentleman who recommended the Zip-It Drain Cleaning Tool instead. Same idea, fraction of the price.
I had to go to Lowes the next day and tossed both the $1.98 Zip-It and the $19 cast iron pipe wrench in my cart along with furnace filters and other stuff that you go to Lowes for. Home I drove, narrowly avoiding near-certain death as I attempted to see around huge piles of snow. Having survived, I climbed the summit of the staircase to the second floor and looked my enemy directly in the eye - I was here to tackle the sink and I was certain that this time I'd win (and the plumber would lose $78 for the service call).
As the Zip-It did not require possible pipe destruction under the sink nor finding the water cut-off, I decided to try that first. I opened the package and read all of the scary disclaimers. I made sure to wear thick work gloves to AVOID the SHARP edges. I was able to KEEP AWAY from CHILDREN as both of my kidlets were in school at the time. I was wearing my old lab goggles from Chemistry 101 so the PROTECTVE EYEWARE was covered. As my Zip-It was brand new, I did not feel DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CLEAN was applicable at that time. There was also a warning against using after you've poured those much maligned dangerous chemicals down the drain but that was months prior so I didn't worry too much. Besides, I was wearing PROTECTIVE EYEWARE!
My Zip-It was/is 20 and 3/8 inches long. It's plastic. It has 32 barbs sticking out down the length of it with 16 on each side. There's a small hole which acts as a handle at the top.
I took the Zip-It by the handle and stuck it down the drain, all the way to the base of the handle. I moved it around a little bit. I pulled it out. There was a tiny bit of goo on it. Not much. I figured that it didn't have any affect at all. So, I turned on the water and was amazed to see it flowing gently and quickly down the drain. There was no backup. Just in case, I stuck the Zip-It down the drain a couple more times and all was well.
Although the Zip-It warned me not to clean it because it has SHARP EDGES, I love danger (well, sometimes) and chose to rinse it in the sink before wiping it down (down, not up!) with a disinfectant wipe. I put it back in the package and stored it under my husband's sink. So, the next time the sinks clogs (and I am certain it will), I will be so prepared.
Now, I have to figure out what to do with my pipe wrench. Maybe I'll take it camping. My new flashlight is not heavy enough for the major job of clubbing fish or bears or possums in self-defense. Maybe I'll take the Zip-It too as it might make a good weapon with all the warnings and such!
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