What is a Drain Auger?

A drain auger, a simple and effective tool can remove all clogs from a blocked drain.

It uses a spring-wound drum to drive the cable through the pipe. It is like a giant flexible corkscrew.

Drain augers are also called plumbers snakes or drain snakes.

What Can A Drain Auger Be Used For?

A drain auger can be used for many different reasons including clearing sink, bathtub, gutter, or sewage pipes that are clogged with hair or sludge.

It can also be used for clearing blocked toilets and drains in a septic tank.

Drain augers come in different sizes and lengths.

The cable length of the drain auger determines how far down the drain it can go.

The longer the cable it will be used for more purposes.

For example, a 25-foot drain auger can be used for clearing the blocked toilet and other shorter drains.

You will need to buy a slightly bigger snake if you want to do more complex projects like unclogging the sewage or floor drains.

cable length and usage of drain auger

How Does A Drain Auger Work?

A drain auger is composed of a flexible steel cable wound around a spring-loaded spindle or drum and sealed inside a plastic housing.

The end of the cable has a corkscrew-shaped head designed to grab hold of any debris that is clogging the drain.

A hand crank, gearbox, or drill is used to turn the drum.

When the user turns the handle on the auger, the drum spins, feeding the cable into the drain.

The cable reels out through the steel tube and augers up blockages in sinks, bathtubs, showers, toilets, and septic tanks.

The spinning of the drum also helps to grab, lift, and break up the clog.

The cable is also flexible enough to bend and follow the curves in the drain pipe.

When the clog is broken up or removed, the water will flow freely again.

Read MoreHow to Use a Drain Auger?

Types of Drain Auger:

There are four different types of drain augers.

Drill Powered Drain Auger:

Drill-powered drain augers are handheld drain augers with the option to attach any household drill to the drum.

It can also be used manually by turning the knob. It has a rubberized handle to ensure a firm grip during use.  The cable is fed into the drain by turning a crank on the handle.

This type of auger is good for clearing small, shallow clogs in sink and bathtub drains.

It is not as effective on clogs deeper in the pipe.

Read More:  How To Use A Power Drain Auger?

The cable feeds automatically with the press of a drill switch. The cable is also flexible enough to follow the curves in the drain pipe.

The drills forward and reverse switch can be used to reach the clog as well as remove the clog from the drain.

drill powered drain auger snake


-It is easy to use and can be attached to any household drill.

– A most portable type of augers for toilets and bathtubs

– Affordable price range


-The drill can become heavy and tiring to use for long periods of time.

Drainx Pro 50-FT Heavy Duty Steel Drum Drain Auger Plumbing Snake with Work Gloves and Storage Bag
  • Our 50 Foot Drain Auger is a great household tool for quickly unclogging any drain including kitchen and bathroom sinks, bathtubs, showers, and drainage pipes. Instead of calling a plumber and a getting a big bill, try unclogging the drain yourself! Bonus Work Gloves and Drawstring Carrying Pouch Included.
  • 1/4" Dia. Steel Snake Cable with spiral head designed for 1-1/4" through 3" drain pipes. Durable steel drum for long lasting use. Grip handle and turning knob for rotating the drum to clear the clog. Steel Thumbscrew keeps the cable in place while not in use, and should also be tightened after you pull the cable out, in order to properly rotate the cable. The diameter of the tip 9/16 of an inch or 0.56 inch.
  • Please Note: It is not recommended to use this auger to clear a toilet clog as the snake cable may damage the porcelain. In addition, the 1/4 diameter snake may get twisted inside the large diameter of the toilet drain. If you wish to avoid this issue, please purchase our toilet auger.
  • Easy Usage Instructions are included in an info-graphic on this page as well as with the product. We recommend that you don’t pull the cable out past the yellow marker that is found at the end of the cable, as this may result in the cable being pulled out of the drum, making it difficult to put back.
  • DrainX manufactures a variety of quality drain cleaning solutions for both the do it yourselfer and the professional. We know that sometimes things can get a bit messy. We are here to help! Please contact us with any questions or concerns. All our products also come with a 1-year warranty for additional peace of mind.

Handheld Portable Drain Auger:

It has a lightweight design and comes with an automatic cable feed.

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It also has a reverse switch to help remove the clog from the drain.

This type of auger is good for clearing small, shallow clogs in sink and bathtub drains.

This type of auger has a variable speed control to help adjust the feed rate.

A durable inner core cable is strong enough to clear a clogged drain up to 25 feet long.

The twisted wires inside the steel tube provide flexibility and prevent it from kinking or breaking even when the auger snags on a, particularly stubborn clog.

The auger can easily reach and remove clogs 25 feet down the drain pipe.

This type of auger is good for clearing deep clogs in toilets, floor drains, and septic tanks.

Handheld Portable Drain Auger


-It is easy to use and has a lightweight design.

-The cable is flexible and kink-resistant.


– Expensive

XtremepowerUS 25' ft Handheld Portable Drain Auger Corded Operated Snake Sink Clog Pipe Cleaner Plumbing Power Auto Feed Tube Cable
  • Great drain cleaning tool for Toilet, Sewer, Bathtub and Kitchen Sink, surely it will save homeowners a lot of money. Drain Auger is a good alternative tool for calling a plumber as it's so easy to use and works efficiently
  • Variable-Speed Control - Applying different forces on the switch to adjust the speed, the speed can up to 550RPM, you can adjust the speed freely to suit different projects
  • 25 feet of durable Inner Core cable with a durable bulb auger head to easily penetrate difficult obstructions. The cable features a inner core material to prevent rust and enhance cable life. It is compression wound for strength and flexibility resulting in more maximum cleaning power
  • Drain cleaning doesn't have to be a messy job. Featuring Autofeed technology, includes a self-feeding cable that retrieves with just the push of a handle. Your hands don't touch the cable providing a no-mess operation
  • Lightweight, easy-to-use, and is excellent for small line cleaning. It opens clogged lavatory and sink lines, urinals, and tub/shower drains 3/4-inch to 2-inch in diameter

Electric Drain Auger:

Electric drain augers are the most preferred drain auger because of their power and versatility.

They are powered by a motor that turns a spindle or drum, which drives the cable into the pipe.

The automatic feed feature ensures that the cable will always remain taut as it unclogs the drain pipe.

Read More:  How To Unclog A Toilet Without A Plunger

They have a replaceable cable that can be easily replaced if it becomes damaged or worn.

They have a variable speed control that allows the user to adjust the speed of the cable feeding into the pipe.

Electric Drain Auger has a rechargeable battery and no cable or cord.

Ideal for clearing stubborn, thick clogs.

Electric Drain Auger


– Clears stubborn, thick clogs

– Variable speed control

– Rechargeable battery


– Can be expensive

– It is quite heavy to hold

POPULO Electric Drain Auger,25Ft Plumbing Snake Drain Clog Remover Tools, Cordless Drain Cleaner for Toilet, Sewer, Bathroom, Sink and Shower 3/4"-2" Pipes
  • ✭Easy use! We have a video to introduce how to use it. The Flexible Cable (7.5mm) and 20V Battery are changeable and amazon is selling it! Drain cleaner hair drain clog remover.
  • ✭If you have any questions for the sewer snake machine, Please Contact Us via Amazon or Email Customer service. We will reply to you in 24 hours!
  • ✭LITHIUM ION 20V MAX & VARIABLE SPEED - Powers up for a longer runtime. Battery fuel gauge easy to check how much power is left and when it needs to be recharged. The Lithium ion battery pack is interchangeable with other tools part of Populo 20V Max System, and we sell the battery in amazon! It is changeable! You can adjust the speed freely to suit different projects, by applying different forces on the switch to adjust the speed up to 560 rpm.
  • ✭ALL-IN-ONE Equipped: 2 5 Ft reinforced flexible cable (7.5mm) It is changeable! Clears clogs with ease from drains from ¾ up to 2 in wide including sinks, toilets and bathtubs. Powered forward and reverse feeding mechanism make the cable down or back drains automatically and cable lock setting holds cable in place while tackling tough clogs.
  • ✭ERGONOMIC DESIGN & LED Work Light: - delivers comfort and control, rubberized grip handles create a better working experience. Built-in LED work light increases the visibility and precise control. On-board rear drain port prevents water build up in the drum.

Rooter Power Drain Auger:

The cable is protected by a steel core that does not rust, preventing kinks and tangles.

This type of drain auger is very similar to the electric drain auger, but it has a replaceable cable instead of having a rechargeable battery.

It is good for heavy-duty work, such as clearing clogs in main sewer lines.

The motor is more powerful than the electric drain auger, and it has a torque head that helps to break up clogs.

The professional tool used by plumbers to clear clogs in main sewer lines.

Air-activated foot control allows the user to feed or retract the cable with the push of a foot pedal.

Have replaceable heads that are good for different clogs in different size pipes.

Rooter Power Drain Auger machine


– Clears heavy blockages with no problems

– Good for all types of clogs


– Not as portable as other types of augers

– Can be expensive

RIDGID 26998 Model K-400 Drain Cleaning 120-Volt Drum Machine Kit with C-45IW 1/2" x 75' Cable, White, Black, Red
  • 120-VOLT DRUM MACHINE: Offers reliable power that cleans even the toughest of everyday 1-1/2" to 4" drain line blockages in tubs, showers, and sinks hassle-free with a sleek profile and user-friendly design
  • ALL-IN-1 PACKAGE: Includes an induction-style belt motor that spins at 165 RPMs, manual controls, solid core cable, a 4-piece tool set, a pair of gloves, and an operator's manual
  • CORROSION-RESISTANT CABLE DRUM: Comes with 75 ft. of 1/2-in. diameter rugged and kink-resistant C-45 Integral Wound solid core cable and has the capacity to run 3/8-in. to 1/2-in. cable up to 100 ft. long
  • EASY TRANSPORTATION: Integrated transport cart with fold over handle features large heavy-duty wheels that easily navigate over bumps and stairs for convenient movement to and from job sites
  • PATENTED CABLE CONTROL SYSTEM: Causes drum to stop spinning if the head gets lodged in blockage to limit potential for cable to flip in the drum and efficiently indicates when blockages are encountered

What Is The Best Way To Use A Drain Auger?

When using a drain auger, it is important to keep the cable straight as it enters the pipe to prevent it from getting stuck.

It is recommended to hold the auger within 4 inches of the drain opening and

If the drain auger becomes stuck in the pipe, do not try to pull it back on its own.

Instead, turn the machine off and let it sit for a few minutes to allow any water that is lodged in the cable to drip back into the drain.

You can then carefully pull it out of the pipe by hand.

When the clog is removed, run hot water through the pipe to clear it of any remaining debris.

drain auger into sink

You should also use a bucket to catch any water or debris that is dislodged from the clog.

If your drain is still clogged after you have used a drain auger, you may need to call a professional plumber to unclog it for you.

Drain augers are the best way to clear clogs in your drain, but they can also be expensive.

It is important to choose the right type of auger for the job and to use it correctly to avoid getting the cable stuck in the pipe.

If the drain auger doesn’t work, you can try using a plunger or a chemical drain cleaner.

Be sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions for using these products.

Always use caution when working with a drain auger because it can cause injury.

What Are The Risks Involved With Drain Augers?

Augers can also be dangerous if they are not used correctly.

When using a drain auger, there is the risk of it getting stuck in the pipe.

This can be dangerous because you could injure yourself while trying to get it unstuck.

You should also use caution when using an electric or manual drain auger near water, even if power is cut off to the unit.

If the drain auger becomes stuck in the pipe, turn it off and wait for a few minutes for the water to drip back into the drain.

Then, you can try to pull it out of the pipe by hand.

Never try to pull it out of the pipe on your own if it is stuck.

When using a drain auger, always make sure to wear safety glasses and be aware of your surroundings. Make sure the cable is long enough to reach the clog.

If the drain auger doesn’t work, try using a plunger or drain cleaning chemicals.

Drain augers are an essential tool for any homeowner who wants to keep their drains clear and flowing properly. They are easy to use and can quickly remove even the most stubborn clogs.

Remember to have fun! Because home repair projects are not always easy to do, having something about them that is fun makes it so much better.

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