Water not draining in your sink or shower as quick as normal? Your drain may have an obstruction or clog that is causing water to pool and not drain properly. A build-up of hair, more often than not, is a common cause of sink and shower clogs.

Thankfully, unlike other more serious clogs, hair clogs are much easier to take care of and many times can be fixed yourself with items you already have at home.

Here are 5 of the best ways to remove hair from a clogged shower or sink drain.

Plumber’s Snake or Wire Hanger

The simplest method is often the most effective: just grabbing the hair blockage and pulling it out! If the blockage isn’t too far down the pipe, you may be able to reach it with a simple plumber’s snake or drain stick. This long, flexible pole with a small claw at the end is a handy tool for every homeowner to have for such an occasion.

Simply insert the tool down the drain until you reach the obstruction, grab it and pull it out. If you don’t have either of these tools handy, you can often accomplish the same task using a modified wire hanger. The average wire hanger and be turned into a hook that can serve the same purpose as the snake or claw. Here’s a quick tutorial.

Boiling Water

One of the most common reasons hair gets stuck in your drain in the first place is because of soap and grease build up coating the inside of your pipes that grabs ahold of the hair, building more and more until there is a complete clog. Eliminating that goopy buildup can often times remove a hair clog, and an easy way is with boiling water.

Simply boil water in a pot on your stove and pour it down the drain. The boiling hot water breaks down the grease and soap, releasing the hair and allowing it to flush down the drain. Just make sure you use a funnel to direct it down the drain, so you don’t spill and burn yourself.


If the hair clog isn’t too far the drain and the buildup of grease and soap isn’t too bad, there’s an off-chance that you may be able to suck out the hair clog with a vacuum. For the best results, make sure the drain is uncovered and as dry as possible.

Using a nozzle attachment, plug the top of the drain and use the highest setting to suck out the contents. Considering the obstruction may be further down the pipe, this may be one of the least effective methods but may be helpful removing any leftover remnants following the application of one of these other methods.

Soda and Vinegar

The combination of baking soda and vinegar is a simple, ecologically friendly and safer solution that acts similarly to chemical drain cleaners. Pour about a cup of baking soda down the drain followed by about a cup of vinegar to cause an acidic chemical reaction that can help clean drains and remove hair clogs. Follow it up with a flush of hot water an hour or so after to check on the clog.

Unlike chemical cleaners, this combination won’t come at the price of potentially causing damage to your plumbing. We can’t recommend strongly enough that you avoid the use of chemical drain cleaners!

Call a Plumber

If none of these methods are enough to get the job, you may have to call in backup. Bringing in a trusted plumber can help you correctly diagnose the cause of the clog and their tools and provide a fast solution.

Mishler Plumbing is dedicated to providing exceptional quality, and honest, dependable service from our team of friendly professionals and committed to serving our friends and neighbors in the Indianapolis area. Call (317) 858-3089 to schedule an appointment today.