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Q&A with Handy Mac: Battling blocked drains

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Jeremy wants environmentally friendly remedies for his problem

As always at this time of year, Cape Town starts to shut down and the question box is nearly empty. 

Jeremy asks:

Q: I am not sure if it is because we are using less water, but I am really starting to battle with blocked drains. Can you recommend any environmentally friendly remedies because we have small children and want to stay away from toxic products.

A: A quick check on the internet recommends two cups of baking soda, boiling water and a cup of vinegar. Remove all water from the sink or tub and pour one cup of baking soda down the drain.

Now pour two cups of boiling water into the drain. This mixture should dissolve the sludge and gunk in the drain.

Put the rest of the baking powder and vinegar into the drain and put in the plug. When bubbling and noise stops, pour in the rest of the boiling water and you should be good to go.

Do this every few months to prevent excessive build up of gunk.

*Handy Mac, aka Don MacAlister, is our expert on household DIY issues. If you have a question for him, please send it to or SMS only to 082 446 3859. Find Don on FB:

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