8 Best Drain Snakes 2021

Whether you’re a plumber, a regular DIY’er, or just someone who lives in a house with a toilet and tub, you’ve probably dealt with a few clogged drains over the years. For times when the clog is further down the drain beyond the siphon or when the dumping proves unsuccessful, the tool you turn to – or wish you had – is a drain hose, which is the solution to most common plumbing fixtures. problems, such as hair clogs and excess toilet paper.

Drain hoses are also called jacks or plumbing hoses. For common, basic household use, a simple manual toilet auger or manual drain hose would probably suffice. However, if you use the drain hose professionally or for a large volume, with multiple units, you need something more substantial that can handle larger, more demanding tasks.

We’ve used a variety of drain hoses both professionally and in our own homes, and while there’s nothing glamorous about these tools, they can really be a lifesaver when a clogged drain needs to be cleared as quickly as possible.

How a drain hose works

To clear a blockage, insert a drain hose or auger into the drain or toilet until it comes into contact with whatever is causing the blockage. The hose or auger then loosens the blockage or chops up the culprit so that the clog can safely continue down the drain.

What to consider?

To easily remove clumps of hair from a sink or tub, a simple manual mortar of six feet or less is usually fine. For heavier jobs – such as those with grease, thick clogs or dirt further down the drain or those that require a longer cable over two meters in length – a motorized machine is a better choice because it provides more power and is more likely to solve the problem. solve quickly and efficiently. While a manual option requires more physical effort to operate, it can be a smart choice for those inexperienced with hoses and augers, as there are fewer things to go wrong, such as the hose getting stuck, and less chance of accidentally damaging something, such as scratching the porcelain or damaging pipes.

Keep in mind that many hoses and augers are for drains (in sinks and showers) and not for toilets. For toilet clogs, choose a hose or auger specifically designed to navigate the trap of a toilet. We always recommend reading the manufacturer’s instructions first and, if available, watching the included instructional videos on how to use a hose or drill, especially if you’re unfamiliar with them or have never used one.

How we evaluated

As someone who previously co-owned a construction and maintenance company and also owns an old house in a rural setting – meaning plumbing and sewer issues are a regular part of everyday life – I have had a lot of experience with drain hoses . the years. When reviewing a wide variety of drain hoses, I based myself on four basic criteria: cable size, manual vs. motorized, recommended use, and head type.

For an average homeowner, cable length and thickness can be on the relatively smaller side: 2 inches or less in diameter and less than 25 feet in length (although many household jacks are significantly shorter — 6 feet or less — making them more manageable while still adequately address common plumbing problems at home, such as simple blockages). However, if you live in a home with old sewer pipes that are prone to clogs, you may want to choose a longer length so that the drain can access clogs further down the sewer pipe.

We also noted the situations that each drain hose would best handle and whether the tool is operated manually or with a motor. Finally, we looked at the type of head the snake has. Smaller general household drain hoses are more likely to have serrated, coiled, or bulbous (spiral) heads, which are effective at removing hair and clearing small clogs, while a cutting head can help with larger, more challenging tasks such as cleaning up debris and solid blockages of sewer pipes.

Best Value

dr. Rooter Drain Hose

dr. Rooter


Cable size: 18 inches long
Manual or motorized: Instruction manual
Best used for: Hair clogs in sink or shower drain
Main Type: Teeth with “barbs”

It doesn’t get much easier – or cheaper – than this. We’ve given a lot of these gadgets to friends because these little drain hoses are handy to have around the house for quick fixes, like a hair clog in your sink or shower drain. At only 18 inches in length, this hose’s reach is limited, so you can’t grab anything that’s too far down the drain. But for common but annoying little clogs, especially in households with long-haired residents, the Dr. Root it.

  • Short length means limited range

User-friendly toilet auger

Ridgid 59787 K-3 Toilet Auger

Cable size: 3 ft. long, ½ inch diameter (other sizes available)
Manual or motorized: Instruction manual
Best used for: toilet clogs
Main Type: Bulb/toothed

This Ridgid drill is hand operated but does not require a lot of force so you can remove many simple clogs without too much strenuous effort. This is a fairly simple toilet drill to use, making it a good option for an inexperienced user (remember, if you’ve never used one, read the instructions first). As with any toilet auger, care must be taken to avoid damage to the toilet – this auger has a vinyl guard designed to protect the narrow opening of the bowl. The cable is sturdy and kink resistant.

  • Easy to operate, even for the inexperienced

Budget drain hose

TheWorks discharge auger



Cable size: 50 ft. long, ½ inch diameter
Manual or motorized: Instruction manual
Best used for: sink drains
Main Type: Boring head with open hook

This drain auger from TheWorks isn’t fancy, but it’s a good option for basic drain clogs when a simple, reliable tool is all you need to get the job done. In addition, it is budget-friendly and easy to use. You just feed the cable through the hollow guide handle and swing. Depending on how bad the clog is, this may take some effort, but you should be able to clear many typical clogs without breaking a sweat.

  • Long length extends far into the drain

Swivel head for curved tubes

DrainX Toilet auger

Cable size: 6 ft. long, ¾ inch diameter
Manual or motorized: Manual, but can be motorized using a drill
Best used for: Toilets and drains
Main Type: drop head

This toilet auger is designed to be relatively easy to manage, even for the inexperienced user, while still delivering impressive results. The flexible design and pivoting head allow access to curved drains and pipes. This hose works manually, but can be converted into an electric jack by attaching it to a drill. The retractable mechanism allows for quick and easy cable entry and withdrawal, and the plastic corner protector protects porcelain and delicate surfaces. This model has an angled drop head, but a similar model with a lamp head option is also available.

  • Can be converted into an electric jack using a drill
  • Manually operated, with an angled drop head

Retractable for less clutter

Ridgid Power Spin

Cable size: 25 ft. long, ¼ inch diameter
Manual or motorized: Manual out of the box: can be powered with a power drill
Best used for: Washbasins and shower drains
Main Type: Spiral Bulb Drill

This is a budget-friendly yet versatile option that is great for routine household use. It’s a drum auger, which means you don’t get that messy because the cable automatically feeds itself and retracts into the drum without your hands touching the cable. You can operate the auger manually using the easy-to-turn handle or convert it to a powered auger by simply attaching it to a variable speed drill. It can handle hair clogs and other clogs in sinks and shower drains, although it is not recommended for use in toilets.

Universal battery system

Ryobi ONE+ P4001

Cable size: 25 ft. long
Manual or motorized: motorized
Best used for: Sinks, drains and minor sewer/toilet blockages
Main Type: Spiral

Ryobi is one of the top names in power tools, so if you want a reliable drain hose that has the power to get the job done – at a reasonable price – this could be a good choice. The automatic feed function minimizes messy hands and makes the process faster and easier. The battery is sold separately but uses the standard battery used for all tools in Ryobi’s ONE+ line, so if you already have one for another tool, you can use that. This is a surprisingly robust tool with many options, which can be intimidating or overwhelming for novice users at first. Read the manual carefully before use.

  • The automatic feed function gets the job done faster

Lightweight and portable

Sun Joe Wireless Automatic Discharge Auger

Sun Joe


Cable size: 25 ft. long, ¼ inch diameter
Manual or motorized: motorized
Best used for: Toilets and sink drains
Main Type: Spiral/corkscrew

This drain hose from Sun Joe is easy to use and so light and portable that you can take it anywhere. It runs on a rechargeable battery – the kit with the battery costs more ($121.52), but if you already have a compatible Sun Joe battery, you can use it with this drill. This tool spins up to 560 RPM in seconds, so you can get those drain cleaning jobs done quickly. The built-in LED light is a handy feature that comes in handy when working in areas with limited lighting.

For professional use

Ridgid K-60SP Sectional Machine



Cable size: Sectional cable purchased separately; can use ⅝-inch or ⅞-inch cable
Manual or motorized: motorized
Best used for: Larger sewage and septic system jobs
Main Type: Variable headings available

This is a serious machine for serious jobs. While it can handle household tasks as well as commercial and industrial scenarios, it goes way beyond what the average homeowner probably needs and isn’t really aimed at the novice user. But it’s a great choice for the professional who needs a reliable workhorse to perform drain and sewer cleaning or septic tank jobs. The ½ HP motor provides all the momentum you need to break through most clogs and blockages. It is designed to use ⅝-inch or ⅞-inch cable to clean lines from 1¼ inches to 4 inches wide.

  • Can handle most clogs and blockages

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