Choosing the Right Drain Cleaning Tool for the Job – Part 2

An industry expert answers more drain cleaning questions

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Choosing the Right Drain Cleaning Tool for the Job – Part 2
The Speedrooter 92 is a great tool for clearing tough root stoppages.

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Earlier this month we answered the question, what is the right drain cleaning tool for each job

Here are more solutions to drain cleaning problems. 

Tree roots: For difficult stoppages you should use a larger-diameter heavy-duty cable that has the torque to cut through tree roots. It is best to use a 5/8- or 3/4-inch Flexicore inner core cable for large drum-type machines, or a 1 1/4-inch sectional cable with sectional machines. 

Start with a smaller cutter like the spearhead or 2-inch U-Cutter to get the water flowing. Then switch to a larger root cutter like a heavy-duty saw blade or root ripper. Don’t be impatient. Guide the cable slowly back and forth to cut through the stoppage thoroughly. If you go too fast, you risk getting caught and damaging the cable. 

Grease clogs: It’s referred to as a self-healing stoppage because when a cable goes through it, the clog closes up again. To really clear a grease clog properly, you should use a waterjetter. The high-pressure water cuts the grease off the walls of the pipe and the high water flow flushes it away. 

Waterjets make the hose vibrate so it can overcome the friction in the drain and slide more easily around tight bends. The thrust of the nozzle pulls the hose through the soft blockage. As you pull the hose back, the high-pressure spray cuts the grease away from the pipe walls and scours them clean. 

Ice: If the ice is in a metal water supply line, you can use a pipe-thawing machine that puts a low-voltage but high current through the metal pipe to safely melt the stoppage. If the stoppage is in a waste line, it’s nearly impossible to cut an ice clog out of a drainline with a snake. But it’s easy to melt an ice clog with a waterjet. The jet nozzle has a number of rear jets to pull the hose to the stoppage, and one or more forward jets to melt the ice and break up the stoppage. 

To download a free Tool Selection Guide, visit To ask questions, email


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