bath bombs

Can Bath Bombs Clog My Bathtub?

Do you enjoy having a pleasant bath using bath bombs? Have you ever wondered if bath bombs could potentially clog your bathtub’s drain? Sadly, it is true, bath bombs can wreak havoc in your bathtub’s drain pipes if not taken care of properly. Since its rise in popularity on Instagram accounts and Tik Tok, people started wondering if bath bombs are actually safe for your drain. Bath bombs can be safe if you take a few extra precautions before using them. Let us explore the world of bath bombs and how to use them responsibly.

What do Bath Bombs consist of?

Bath bombs are usually made from three ingredients: baking soda, citric acid, and cornstarch. Oftentimes, bath bombs also contain dyes and Epsom salt (known for soothing muscles). The bubbles from bath bombs come from the chemical reactions that happen when baking soda and citric acid come into contact with water.

Problems that will be encountered

Sometimes the Epsom salts will not dissolve, and partially dissolved bath salts will clog your drains. Occasionally, some of the undissolved salts can become caught in the drain, which will then catch on hair and other pieces of debris. Some of the above-mentioned additives can stick to the inside of your pipes from the left-over residue. Over time, these left-over residues can collect soap, hair, and other foreign substances, which will lead to a clogged drain. The Bath bombs also contain oils that can solidify as they cool, and cornstarch can harden in pipe elbows or curves as it dries. You might have heard that it is a bad idea to flush oil down the drain and it is true!

Some bath bombs contain more than just oils and salts. Some of the fancy types of bath bombs will contain undissolvable pieces like flower petals, confetti, glitter, and more. It will make the bath bomb look cool; however, you must remember that these little pieces can clog your drain.

How to safely use bath bombs?

  1. Use protectional barriers to prevent damaging ingredients from going down the drain. Ideally, your drain plug should include a strainer to keep out large objects. However, if your tub stopper does not include a strainer, place the bath bomb in a nylon cloth and tie it tightly before putting it in the water. The nylon will prevent the unwanted ingredients from traveling down the drain while only allowing the good stuff to disperse in the water.
  2. Clean out the drain regularly with vinegar and water. You can do this by pouring vinegar down your drain and letting the vinegar settle inside the drain for several minutes. When you are done, flush the drain with hot water. This will help clear all the gunk and oil that bath bombs have left inside the drains.

The most effective method is using vinegar and baking soda. These two items are highly effective in removing the most stubborn clogs. Follow this step-by-step procedure for immediate effect:

  • Heat a kettle full of water
  • While waiting for the hot water, get 1/2 cup of baking soda and pour it over the drain
  • Follow this with a 1/2 cup of vinegar.

Note: you will want to open the window or turn on the bathroom fan since the vinegar might irritate your eyes and nose.

  • You will see foaming around the drain so let this sit for a minimum of 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, pour the hot water down the tub drain to rinse out the baking soda/vinegar mixture.

This procedure will only work for mild clogging. Therefore, you need to do this procedure after every 2 to 3 uses of bath bombs. This will prevent the formation of a thick clog.

What to do if all methods fail?

If your drains do start to back up, a professional plumber can help you clear your drain and keep the drains flowing smoothly. We can help you take care of your plumbing and keep your drains flowing smoothly. If you do find yourself with a clogged drain, do not hesitate to book an appointment with CJ Drain & Plumbing.