How to Choose the Right Cleaning Chain For Your Task at Hand

Awesome tips to make sure you get the correct chains 🙂

As the selection of cleaning chains available in our store is huge, we want to give you a bit of advice on how to choose your weapon;)

The old saying goes that you don’t want to bring a knife to a gunfight, right? It’s viable advice when it comes to pipe cleaning tools.

When you’re tasked with the tedious job of cleaning some pipes, there’s always several factors you need to take into consideration. For example:

– What is the size of the pipe you’ll be working on?

– What is the condition of the pipe?

– What is the material of the pipe?

– What can you expect to clean from the pipe?

– What type of machinery will you use to clean the pipe?

When working inside buildings, and most domestic area infrastructure piping, you’ll be facing nominal pipe sizes from DN50 up to DN400.

This is one of the factors you’ll need to consider when choosing your machines and your tools. If the pipe size is too large, you can’t handle it with a battery drill. The torque needed for running your tools will end up killing your drill. If you end up using tools too little for the pipe size at hand, the job won’t be completed to satisfaction OR you’ll end up breaking your tools due to slamming them shut inside the pipe.

Another condition to factor in is the condition of the pipe. For example, installation failures with cast iron pipes can bring surprises in our line of work – we’ve encountered cast iron pipes that have been installed just 5 years ago, and they are already in terrible condition. Should you choose to go in with a heavy duty carbide tipped cleaning chain, you might end up smashing the walls of the pipe too hard and eventually end up with a collapsed pipe on your hands. It’s always imperative to inspect the condition of the pipe as much as possible, so that you’ll be able to match your tools with the task at hand.

Then again, if you’re cleaning PVC pipes instead of clay or cast iron or other hard materials, you want to make sure that you won’t use tools that are too rough for the material. The carbide tipped tools are generally too radical for the PVC pipe, and even though you might get the job done with them if you’re experienced enough, there’s a high risk that you’ll end up breaking the pipe due to running your x-tip chains at any one point for too long. These hard metal tips will eat the PVC up and you’ll be left with a broken pipe. Try the non-tipped cleaning chains instead – they are much more gentle on the PVC and yet they do great in removing any build-up inside the pipe.

Another very important factor in choosing your weapon of choice is: What is it that you’re going to be cleaning out from the pipe? Is there hard concrete inside it? Or root intrusion? Or just a soft grease blockage? There is a lot of variation in what the tools can do – depending on the hard metal tip hardness, chain link strength and many other factors.

After you’ve checked all the other boxes, all that’s left is to choose the machine you need to use these tools with. Obviously, there’s a bunch of variations available in the market for this too, but we love to unpack this in an understandable form this way:

1. The chains.

The easiest and the quickest way to get your chains spinning is to attach it to a standalone flexshaft equipped with a shaft cover, cover bearings and a drill rotator. Then just attach the combo to your clutched hand drill, and rock on! But – CAUTION! When ever using these shafts and chains with a bare cordless drill, stay alert because if the chain gets stuck inside the pipe, the force traveling back to the drill is quite strong.

2. The Flexible shafts.

Flexible shafts are the lifeblood of the modern-day drain cleaning industry. They are used by the biggest brands in the world for example Picote Solutions in their Miller machines, or Ridgid Tools in their K-102, K-204 and K-306 drain cleaning machines, and various other brands. The flexible shaft can also be used as a standalone tool when you attach a drill rotating adapter and a chain, or brush, to your ready-made shaft. All these high quality standalone tools, including the flexible shafts and drain cleaning chains etc are available in our online store.

To make life as easy as humanly possible for you, our team here at Plumber-Tools has done it’s best to indicate as much information as possible for you on our product pages, with each product type having it’s own unique description.

We’ve gone further and explained a bit about what types of blockages can be removed with each tool, or what kind of job it does.

And that’s all, folks! We hope this helps you in your task of choosing the right tools for the job you need to do.

If there’s anything else we could help you with, please don’t hesitate! We’re here to help you in any way we can. You’ll reach us through our email or WhatsApp us on +358 44 2306224

Thanks for reading and have an awesome day!