Do Bath Salts Damage Your Pipes?

Photo: ©Maja Topcagic / Stocksy

To most of us, sinking into a hot bath after a stressful day or an intense workout is a slice of heaven. The warmth of the water, the soothing scent of bath salts—we feel more relaxed just thinking about it. Unfortunately, when it comes to your plumbing, your bathing ritual might be doing more harm than good. According to plumbing pros at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, bath bombs, salts, and oils can cause issues if you’re not careful.

When partially dissolved bath salts collect in your drain, they can mix with hair and other debris and cause major clogs. The same goes for the flower petals, glitter, and confetti in your bath bomb. In addition to potentially trapping you in the bathtub, bath oils can also clog pipes by congealing when they cool. In fact, household oils that you pour down your sink can bind with the minerals in sewers, forming massive clogs called “fatbergs.” (New York City has an actual campaign to prevent them!)

Luckily there are ways you can prevent your bath obsession from causing damage to your plumping. Plumbers recommend cleaning your drain with vinegar and water (just pour vinegar down the drain, let it sit for several minutes, and then flush with hot water from your faucet) regularly. You can also pour a mixture of baking soda and boiling water down your drain once a month to help clear away any buildup. If your tub starts to drain slowly or not at all, it’s time to call in a professional (plumber, that is).