How to Use a Drain Auger with a Drill

How to use a drain auger with a drill is very similar to using a manual drain auger.

Some drain augers give you the choice of manually cranking your auger cable into your drain or using a cordless drill to add some extra power for getting rid of tough clogs.

We will walk you through how to use a drain auger with a drill below so you can save some cash on hiring Pros.

how to use a drain auger with a drill
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Using a Drain Auger with a Drill Attachment: Supply List

Get the following things done before you start augering and unclogging your drain with a drain auger will be super easy.

  • Charged Drill Battery
  • Bucket to catch water under the sink
  • Gloves
  • Safety Goggles
  • Rags or towel to clean up any messes
  • Turn off the water supply to your sink.  The knobs will be under your sink.  Turn them all the way to the right until they’re tight
how to use a drain auger with a drill
Water supply valves under your sink to turn off before working on your drains

How to Use a Drain Auger with a Drill: 13 Step by Step Instructions

How to use a snake with a drill is almost the same as using it manually.  Except the drill attached to the drum of your auger helps to give your auger cable so torque to power through the toughest clogs.

Saves you the elbow grease and energy so you can get onto another DIY task. Follow our quick and easy instructions below to get that drain running clear as fast as possible.

  1. Attach your cordless drill to the shaft like connection on the outside of your auger, near the manual crank handle. Make sure it is tightly secured.
  2.  Remove the sink stopper.  Or, bypass it all together and go under the sink, remove the pipe and start from the P trap, where most clogs are hiding anyways
  3.  Feed the auger cable down the drain pipe a few inches at a time.  Keep feeding the cable even if you think you should’ve hit the clog by now. Keep fingers and clothing away from the drill and auger 
  4.  Finally, when you hit something solid, that’s your clog  
  5.  Feed about 6-12 more inches of the cable into the drain.  This ensures that you’ve really got a hold of the gunk and hair clogging up your drain
  6.  Tighten the auger cable so it doesn’t move all over the place when you start your drill
  7.  Turn on your cordless drill by using the trigger and start slowly spinning the cable
  8.  Apply enough force to your auger so that it works it way down your drain and through the clog.  Gentle force is really all that’s needed
  9.  Continue to work your cable into the drain while applying force so that you get every clog out of your pipe
  10.  Wind your auger back out of the drain by changing the direction of your cordless drill or manually cranking the cord back into the auger drum.  Don’t forget to wipe it off as you wind it back up 
  11.  Test your drain to make sure it’s flowing  
  12.  Repeat if required  
  13. Clean and store your drill and auger

What if the Clog is too Hard to Remove?

Sometimes you might have a deeper clog and will need to remove the trap arm.  This is the piece of pipe that is between the P trap and the wall.  Get a bucket and place it under the trap arm.  Remove the trap arm and follow the steps above to feed your auger into the pipe in the wall and clear your stubborn clog. 

It’s recommended to wear safety glasses, gloves and and mask to protect yourself. If the blockage is too hard to remove or you are not comfortable using the auger, it may be best to call a plumber for professional help.

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.

Pro Tips on How to Use a Drill Powered Drain Auger

Begin by making sure that your auger is securely attached to your drill. Start your drill on a low speed setting so that you get the hang of it at first. Also, this will prevent you from damaging your pipes.

Be sure to wear protective gear such as safety glasses and gloves, and make sure to use the auger gently to avoid damaging the pipes.

It’s also important to make sure the auger cable is not twisted or kinked before inserting it into your pipes.

Also, be mindful of what types of pipes you are using the auger on and to not use too much force which may damage the pipes (older pipes and PVC may get damaged with too much force). If in doubt, it may be best to consult a plumber for professional help.

How do you use a Drill Powered Drain Auger in a Toilet

We recommend against this, but we know people will do it anyways. So we made a post to help you as much as possible, check it out HERE. Follow the instructions for clearing out drains in that post but be careful not to scratch your toilet bowl.

How to Clean Your Drill Powered Drain Auger

Your auger will be covered in some disgusting goo from your pipes and your clog once you’re done using it. 

Our best advice for cleaning your drain auger is: 

  1. Put your drain snake back down your pipe  
  2. Flush a ton of water and disinfectant or bleach down your pipe 
  3. Pull out the drain snake and place it in a bucket or a large garbage bag 
  4. Take the bucket/bag outside 
  5. Hose down your drain snake and scrub it with a brush and disinfectant 
  6. Let it air dry and then put wire oil on the cable to protect the cable from rust and corrosion


How to use a drain auger with a drill is a skill that will save you time and effort.  If you’ve already got a cordless drill at home, you can buy a quality drum auger and get those drains unclogged fast without having to call the Pros in.

Should I buy a Drain Auger?

When you think about the cost of calling a plumber, maybe even on the weekends or after hours when there’s an additional call out fee, you’re going to be spending at least $250 per call out. A drain auger can cost a mere $100 or less and you can use it as much as you need to. Buying a drain auger is just a smart financial move.