Fix an Auger Stuck in a Drain

If you own a drain auger, you need to know how to fix an auger stuck in a drain.

We go into detail in our post below about how to get that drain auger out of your drain without a ton of effort, just alot of patience.

fix an auger stuck in a drain
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How to Get a Drain Auger Unstuck

Sometimes a drain auger gets stuck in your pipes because of all the bends in the pipes. While an auger can be an effective tool for unclogging drains, it’s not uncommon for it to become stuck in the drain.

How to Fix an Auger Stuck in a Drain

If your auger is stuck in a drain, don’t panic. There are several steps you can take to try and remove it yourself before calling in a professional plumber. You may have to try each one several times before they work, so stay patient. Here’s what to do:

  1. Stop applying force: If you’re currently using the auger, stop applying force and try to gently back it out. Keep cranking the auger cable.
  2. Wind the auger deeper: you can try to wind the auger deeper into the drain without applying too much force, if any at all. Then, gently back out the auger while cranking the cable.
  3. Apply lubricant: Try applying a lubricant such as WD-40 to the area where it’s stuck if you can reach. You can squirt the lubricant on the cable, enough so it runs down into the drain. This may help loosen it up and make it easier to remove.
  4. Use a drain cleaner: If the auger is completely stuck and won’t budge, you may need to use a drain cleaner to dissolve any debris that’s holding it in place. Follow the instructions on the drain cleaner carefully.
  5. Call a plumber: If you’re unable to remove the auger yourself, or if you suspect that there may be a larger problem with your plumbing system, it’s best to call a professional plumber to help. They will have the tools and expertise to safely and effectively remove the auger and diagnose any underlying issues.

Why an Auger Gets Stuck in a Drain

There are several reasons why an auger can become stuck in a drain, including:

  1. Bends in the drain: Your auger can become stuck if it gets caught in the P Trap. This is particularly common with rigid augers, which are less flexible and can’t navigate tight turns as easily as their more flexible counterparts.
  2. Debris in the drain: If the auger encounters a large blockage, such as tree roots or a buildup of grease and debris, it can become stuck in the drain. In some cases, the auger can become tangled in the debris and be difficult to remove.
  3. Improper use of the auger: If you’re not using the auger correctly, such as forcing it down the drain too hard or twisting it in the wrong direction, it can become stuck.
  4. Rust or corrosion: If the auger is old or has been stored in a damp environment, it may have rusted or corroded, which can cause it to become stuck in the drain. Buy the oil described below to keep your auger cables in tip top shape.
Before storing your auger, apply General Wire Snake Oil to your cable after you’ve cleaned it. This stops rust and keeps your cable from getting stiff and kinking while it’s in storage.

How to Prevent an Auger from Getting Stuck in a Drain

Preventing an auger from getting stuck in a drain is much easier than dealing with a stuck auger. Here are some tips to help prevent this frustrating situation from happening in the first place:

  1. Use the right auger: Make sure you’re using the right type of auger for the job. For example, a small hand-cranked auger may work well for a minor clog in a sink, but an electric auger may be needed for a more serious clog in a main sewer line.
  2. Use the auger correctly: Make sure you’re using the auger correctly, following the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. For example, don’t force the auger down the drain too hard.
  3. Use a drain strainer: Use a drain strainer or filter to catch hair, food scraps, and other debris before it can make its way into the drain. This can help prevent clogs from forming in the first place.
  4. Regular maintenance: Regularly clean your drains to prevent buildup of debris that can cause clogs. This can include using a drain cleaner, flushing the drain with hot water, or even using a plunger to clear minor clogs before they become major issues.
  5. Consider professional cleaning: Consider having your drains professionally cleaned on a regular basis, particularly if you have older plumbing or have experienced frequent clogs in the past. A professional cleaning can remove buildup and debris that can cause clogs, as well as help identify any underlying issues with your plumbing system.

Drain Clog Prevention

Here are some tips to prevent future drain clogs:

  • Watch that the kids put anything down the drains
  • Clean out your pipes twice per year with a drain auger
  • Grease should be poured into a container and thrown out, not down your toilet
  • Use a drain catcher in your sink drains to catch any debris that gets into the sink

Cost of Hiring a Plumber Versus Buying a Drain Auger

Hiring a plumber to unclog your drains costs anywhere from $100- 250, depending on the area and how complicated the clog is. A drain auger can be as cheap as $30. You can also use your drain auger as many times as you like, so I consider it an investment.

Fix an Auger Stuck in a Drain Conclusion

We hope that you can now fix your auger when it gets stuck in a drain. It’s no problem, just takes some patience and elbow grease to work it out. A stuck auger in a drain can be a frustrating and inconvenient problem to deal with, but it can usually be resolved with a few simple steps.

By understanding why an auger can become stuck in a drain, how to remove a stuck auger, and how to prevent it from happening in the first place, you can tackle this issue with confidence and ease. Remember, if you’re ever unsure about how to proceed or feel uncomfortable attempting to remove a stuck auger yourself, it’s always best to call in a professional plumber for assistance.


What type of Auger is best to use on a drain?

For unclogging your drains, you should use a drain auger.