Home plumbing can get complicated, and there will come a time when you will need to hire a professional plumber to clean out your drains. Not everyone likes to hear that since it is cheaper to try to tackle a bad drain or garbage disposal yourself, but calling a professional could be what you need to give yourself peace of mind and save you from a more costly repair bill down the road.

Knowing when to call a professional plumber to fix a drain or garbage disposal is all about watching for certain signs.  This isn’t a complete list of those signs, but you should still consider calling someone if you see them.


Slow Drains

A slow drain can be caused by any number of things, from the early stages of a clog to mineral build up on the insides of your pipes. This may not seem like a serious problem, but it is a sign of bigger problems to come. If you notice water draining slowly in any of your sinks or your garbage disposal, call a plumber sooner rather than later to take care of it.


Clogs are perhaps the most common problem you will face with your drains. Most clogs are caused by too much of the wrong materials going down your drains. Grease can harden and plug your drains, and stringy foods can become trapped in your garbage disposal. You can sometimes clear minor clogs by yourself if you know how, but the most stubborn clogs require a plumber’s expertise.

Other sinks in your house can be susceptible clogging for other reasons. In the bathroom, hair, pieces of soap, or other debris can combine to wreak havoc on an efficient drain system.

If you have clogged drains in your home, don’t hesitate to call a plumber. This usually means that there is a clog in your main drainage system, one that is too deep to be reached without the proper tools.

Foul Smells

This one applies to your drains and your garbage disposal. You might notice a foul sewer smell if food, garbage and other pollutants have become trapped in your drains. This can sometimes be fixed with a proper cleaning, but you may need to replace some of your plumbing if the problem persists.


Leaks and flooding are the most catastrophic drain problems. A flood doesn’t have to fill your entire basement or damage your house, either; water coming up in your sink and refusing to go down can also cause flooding. It’s important to act fast and get professional help to mitigate damage.