I see flexible accordion drain pipe in use frequently. I look at these with questions since most home improvement stores have them. Why sell it if you aren’t supposed to use it? They are intended to be used as a temporary solution.

The major problem accordion pipe has is the collection of grime, hair, dirt, and other small items which may fall in the drain. The design of the pipe allows for debris to easily collect in the waste line. With the collection of all the goop, the drain begins to slowly clog and not drain properly.

Another reason people buy them is because sometimes plumbing just flat out doesn’t align properly. Often you can deal with gap issues by exercising some creativity when putting the fittings together. There’s no rule elbows all need to run at 90-degrees. You can rotate them to fit the space you are working in when the pipe coming from the sink and coming out the wall aren’t in a straight line perpendicular to the wall. (Be sure not to make a “roller coaster” out of your drain pipe though, which in itself can create proper drainage.)

When you deal with gaps in plumbing alignment, you could also try using another type of fitting. There are many to choose from. Chances are there’s an elbow that goes from the trap up to the drain. You can also splice one or more straight couplings into regular straight lengths of PVC to get a bit more flexibility if you need it. Or to get out of a real bind, Fernco makes an entire trap out of flexible rubber. Be careful with these because you could pinch the trap and create a similar issue to what you were intentionally trying to fix. It may be a bit more time consuming that using the accordion pipe but the extra time could save hours in the future.

In the end, there is no solution better than hiring a professionally licensing plumber to properly install the drain. The price for the repair can eliminate headaches and hassles.