Is your shower drain having problems?
The reason is probably limescale buildup from the hard water you’re using.
This guide will take you through the best DIY ways to get rid of calcium buildup in the shower.
The best way to clear calcium buildup from plumbing pipes in your shower is using baking soda and white vinegar. A mixture of the two will dissolve the lime residue and leave the pipes draining faster.
This is a temporary solution, so, if you want to solve the problem completely, consider installing a water softening system.
Another quick solution to limescale (calcium) buildup in your bathroom is Lime-A-Way Bathroom Cleaner which is very good for removing lime, calcium, and rust.
- 1 What causes lime buildup in the pipes?
- 2 How to Get Rid of Lime Buildup in the Shower Drains
- 3 How to Prevent Lime Buildup in Shower Plumbing
What causes lime buildup in the pipes?
The buildup of lime in your shower drain occurs because of using hard water for a while.
This hard water contains chemicals including magnesium, sodium, and others. Limescale (the gunk that builds up in the drains) is made of calcium and magnesium deposits.
This problem is common in steel pipes as opposed to PVC and copper ones. You need to clear this buildup to have the proper level of drainage in your shower when in use.
How to Get Rid of Lime Buildup in the Shower Drains
The good news is, you can descale the drains with homemade solutions.
The only problem is that some of these methods emit toxic fumes when used and thus should be avoided. Using vinegar and baking soda is the best option because it does not emit poisonous fumes. You’ll still need a well-ventilated area for maximum safety.
What you’ll need:
- Baking soda
- Hot water
The baking soda works by breaking down the fatty acids in the sediments while also attacking the grime in your drain. It is advisable to use natural or natural-based products as their cleaning has no side effects.
Ready with the components above? Here are the steps to follow:
1. Drain all the excess water from the clogged up pipes
If there’s sluggish water in your shower area, drain all of it first. You can use a plunger drain pump to push all the water away. If that doesn’t work, stick a brush with a long handle into the drain and try to scrub. This usually creates a way for the stagnant water to drain away.
2. Pour baking soda and white vinegar into the drains
Take half a cup of vinegar and half a cup of baking soda and pour it into the shower drain. There is no special mix to it. You just pour them down the drain.
3. Cover the ingredients
Put a piece of cloth in water to make it damp then cover the drain with it. After a while, you will hear bubbling and fizzing sounds from the vinegar and baking soda mixture. Keep the drain covered for about five minutes as the ingredients dissolve the lime.
4. Wash the solution away
After the five minutes of covering the drain, remove the cloth. Pour the boiling water down the drain.
5. Clean up the area
Pour a tablespoon of vinegar onto a sponge. Wipe the area around the drain to remove the vinegar and baking soda which could have risen to the surface.
Just like that, you will be done with getting rid of the calcium buildup in your shower drain. As a recommendation, you need to do this once every month.
How to Prevent Lime Buildup in Shower Plumbing
Before delving into how to clean your shower drain, it is helpful to look at the ways of preventing the scenario in the first place. There are three main ways of doing this namely:
Install a shower filter for hard water
Your immediate solution could be a water-softening shower head. These come with a cartridge that filters out minerals (magnesium and calcium) and chemicals from the water before it reaches the heating system.
You can purchase one of these from Amazon at a low cost. The best part is that you can even install a shower filter for hard water by yourself.
Clean the drains frequently
One way of avoiding the buildup of calcium deposits in your pipes and other places in the home is frequent flushing/cleaning of the pipes.
Flushing with the right cleaning agents goes a long way in keeping the buildup of gunk under check.
Use soft water
While a lot of the water supplied to homes is hard, you can resort to using soft water to prevent the calcium and other chemical sediments in your pipes and drains from building up.
You may have to change your source to a soft water supplier, or using a softening plant for all your water needs.