Determine the right diameter of a drain cleaning cable

For a drain cleaning cable it is not only important to have the right length but also the right diameter. Which diameter makes sense for which cables? 

Drain cleaning cable: The diameter of the tool is decisive

First of all, it must be noted that the essential diameter is not that of the drain cleaning cable, but that of the tool located at the end of the drain cable. There are only a few, very simple pipe cleaning spirals with a very small diameter, which do not have a tool at the end, but only end in an open wound drain cable, the so-called spiral point. They are usually only used to remove hairs in the siphon, but are unsuitable for proper clogging.  

The majority of drain cleaning spirals are equipped with a drain cleaning tool. These tools have different shapes and dimensions, depending on the type of plugging for which they were designed. Therefore, in addition to the diameter of the drain cable, pay particular attention to the diameter of the tool! After all, it must fit into the pipe that you want to clean. As a "rule of thumb" you can calculate that the pipe cleaning tool should be 10-20mm smaller than the inner diameter of the pipe. This means that for a 50mm pipe, for example, you should use a tool with a maximum diameter of 30mm.

Drain cable diameter according to area of application: House area

Often the diameters of the drain cleaning cables are already matched to those of the tool. For simple cleaning work in the home, i.e. behind washbasins etc., 9mm or 6,4mm drain cables have proven to be ideal. In most cases these are 50mm pipes. The pipe cleaning tools at 9mm drain cable therefore usually have diameters of 20-30mm. If you want to clean narrower pipes, you should instead use 6mm drain cables. Their pipe cleaning tools are usually in the range of 15-20mm, and can therefore also be used for 30mm and 40mm pipes. 

For the siphon itself there are also particularly small siphon cables. Due to their small diameter, these are maximally flexible and pass through every bend and siphon. At the same time, however, they lack the necessary stability for longer distances and coarser drain blockages. These drain cables are therefore very short. As described above, they usually only have a widely wound, tapering drain cable at the end, the spiral tip.

Small pipe cleaning spirals in the range from 6mm to 10mm are either very simple and have a small plastic or wooden crank. They are loosely wound and are simply laid out and pushed into the pipe during use. How to determine the correct length of the drain cleaning cable is explained here.

Alternatively to a simple drain cleaning cable you can use a drain cleaning device. This has great advantages over a blank drain cable, as you can read in our article drain cleaning device or drain cable

Outdoor area: higher drain cable diameter necessary

In case you clean outdoors, i.e. in drains, gutters and rainwater pipes, on ponds etc., you generally use more stable drain cables with bigger diameters. This is because the pipes here usually have a diameter of at least 100mm. At the same time, the distances to be covered are often longer and there are often fewer bends. For the diameter of the drain cleaning cable a range of 10mm to 15mm is therefore ideal. Finally, however, the pipe cleaning tool at drain cleaning cable also determines which diameter you should choose. The typical tools here are the drill head, the normal claw and the three-prong claw. Their diameters usually vary between 30mm and 50mm, so that pipes from 50mm to 100mm can be ideally cleaned.

You are still not sure which diameter is the right one for your drain blockage? Simply write to us via our contact form, we will be happy to help you!

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