I was doing the dishes after supper as I always do, going about my business. I noticed the water wasn’t draining from the sink shortly after cleaning and rinsing the frying pan. I looked to see if there was anything obstructing the drain opening, but there wasn’t. The waste disposal was turned on, although that only provided a short-term solution. The drainage was only getting slower as I kept washing dishes. My post-dinner cleanup was going to grow more difficult because I had a clogged sink.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds clogged drains to be inconvenient. The most frequent drainage problems that affect homeowners are clogged kitchen sinks, partly because soap residue and food particles are nightmares for efficient draining. Fortunately, unclogging clogged drains is one of the simpler DIY home repairs. Make sure you are aware of the plumbing misconceptions that could mislead you, though, before you roll up your sleeves and embrace the spirit of DIY.
Don’t believe Drano and other chemical-based drain cleaners are the quick remedy for problems with the kitchen sink, for example. Even if the clog initially appears to be cleared, the chemicals can end up doing more harm to your system. Additionally, the backsplash caused by obstinate obstructions could severely hurt your skin and eyes. Other clog repair techniques, some of which require the use of simple tools found around the house like a plunger or plumber’s snake, can help you prevent these disasters.
Call the plumber later. With one of these six techniques to unclog a kitchen sink, there’s a strong possibility you can take care of the issue yourself:
1. Use boiling water
Boiling water may be all your pipes need to clear a clog caused by hair, grease, soap residue, and other debris. Since it’s the most straightforward solution, you should start there when trying to unclog a sink.
Here are the actions to take, which are simple as 1-2-3:
- Use a kettle or your burner to heat a half gallon of water to a rolling boil.
- Immediately pour the boiling water into the drain’s entrance.
- Check to check if the water flows steadily when you turn on the faucet. Repeat the procedure if it’s still standing in the sink or draining slowly.
Important information: If your drain is connected to PVC pipes, avoid using this method since the boiling water may melt or harm the plastic.
It’s time to switch to a different technique if the boiling water doesn’t successfully remove the clog after two tries. Unfortunately, your sink blockage is too difficult to clear with a simple boiling water solution.
2. Examine garbage disposal
Your drainage troubles can be caused by the garbage disposal in your sink. Turning on the disposal will typically clear the obstruction if it is there. Disposals that are too hot or broken might not even come on, but you can quickly restart them by turning on the reset switch at the side or bottom of the appliance. To clear the clog, try turning the disposal on once again after resetting it.
The disposal may be stuck or faulty if you switch it on and hear a low humming sound. Remember to turn off the unit’s electricity before attempting any repairs to the disposal, and never—and we mean never—stick your hand inside the appliance. After that, you can attempt manually turning the disposal’s blades to clear the clog. You can do this by placing an Allen wrench into the disposal’s bottom hole and turning it until you encounter reduced resistance, which indicates that the obstruction is starting to dissolve. These instructions will help you clear a clogged garbage disposal if that doesn’t work. Restart the power once the disposal is unclogged, then test it. Turn the faucet to check the sink drainage if everything appears to be in order and is making a decent sound.
Remember that your check of the garbage disposal might not turn up any obstructions or problems; in that case, you can move on to a different unclogging technique.
3. Push the obstruction aside
It’s time to pull out the plunger once you’ve determined that the garbage disposal isn’t the issue. But keep in mind: Dengarden advised using a flat-bottomed plunger for the operation, although you can use the toilet plunger if that’s all you have on hand. Prepare your plunger and proceed as follows:
- Hot water should be poured into the sink until it is about halfway full, sealing the drain in place.
- Place the plunger over the drain and start quickly pumping up and down multiple times.
- Wait to observe if the water drains after removing the plunger.
Continue until the water is freely draining.
After several plunges, if the sink is still not draining properly, you know what to do. Time to switch things up.
4. Use baking soda and vinegar to break it down.
This method unclogs clogged drains without the use of chemical drain cleaners. Baking soda and vinegar are both typical household ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen, which is great for you. To allow the mixture to do its magic, follow these steps:
- With a cup or bowl, drain the sink of any standing water.
- Pour one cup of baking soda down the drain, pushing the powder down if required with a spatula or spoon.
- One cup of white vinegar should be poured down the drain hole.
- To close the aperture, put a stopper or cover over the drain.
- Give the mixture 15 minutes to rest.
- Run hot tap water down the drain after removing the cap.
- For tougher clogs, use boiling water.
This natural approach doesn’t always work, just like any other unclogging technique. After completing the procedures, if it appears that you are clearing the obstruction, repeat the procedure to intensify your efforts.
5. Make use of the plumber’s snake
To overcome the obstruction, the stubborn clogs will need the power of a plumber’s snake. The device has a spiral snake with a coil that extends into the drain. When the snake encounters a blockage, you can turn the handle to move the obstruction and remove it from the drain. For clearing clogged drains, electric snakes have much greater strength.
A wire coat hanger can be used to manufacture a temporary plumber’s snake if you don’t have one. Simply unwind the hanger into a lengthy strand of wire using a pair of needle-nose pliers. Keep the hooked end since you’ll need it to grip onto the trash. If necessary, you can use the pliers to change the hook’s angle so that it will fit through the drain opening without difficulty.
Whatever tool you’re using, just feed it a few feet at a time into the drain. Try to avoid pushing too forcefully to avoid accidently pushing the obstruction deeper into the pipe. Hook your tool on and draw the debris up through the drain when you feel the tip of the tool contact an obstacle. Continue repeating this until you are certain that the obstruction has been removed. To test whether you’re correct, pour hot water down the drain. A plumber in Melbourne, FL sent us this list so we hope it translated to good use for you.
6. Clean the P-trap clean
If the water is still not draining properly, the elbow-shaped P-trap pipe under your sink may be blocked. If food, oil, or other material is lodged in the pipe, the water may snag as it descends, causing your sink to drain slowly or not at all.
The solution is to disassemble the pipe and remove the debris that is clogging it up. You may want to arm yourself with gloves, goggles, and towels because this task can become a little nasty. When you’re prepared, perform the P-trap cleaning procedure as follows:
Put a container under the pipe. When you open the P-trap, this will capture any backed-up water or debris that may fall out.
The connectors holding the curved piece to the vertical and horizontal drain pipes must be unscrewed from the trap. On either end of the P-trap, a slip nut ought to be present.
Clear the pipe of any dirt, filth, and residue by removing the P-trap.
Hook up the trap again.
To pour water down the drain, turn on the faucet.
If the drainage problem persists, the obstruction can be further up the pipe. You return to the sink’s underside to look for the obstruction’s origin. When you arrive, follow these instructions:
- To remove the P-trap, repeat the procedure.
- Remove the horizontal pipe that runs along the wall and links the system.
- Insert a coat hanger, auger, or plumber’s snake into the wall pipe. Use your tool to remove the impediment from the pipe when you sense one.
- Until all the debris is gone, repeat the process.
- After hand-tightening the connectors, reassemble the pipes and P-trap. (Home Depot’s pro tip: Don’t overtighten; doing so could result in cracked connectors.)
For a drain flush, run hot water.
Check under the sink while the water is flowing to make sure there are no leaks from the pipes before you enjoy your handiwork. Make sure all the connectors are tightened if you do detect leakage. Dry any water that has spilled on the floor or under the sink when you are rid of the drips, and you are ready to go.