I always find myself in a pinch when it comes to unclogging my sinks. I’m sure you’ve been there too, it’s an absolute nightmare! Your kitchen/bathroom sink is endlessly clogged and despite your best efforts, the pipes are still plugged up with gunk from never-ending dishes or even worse -greasy products that seem like they can’t be washed away no matter what you do. You’re left feeling discouraged but fortunately for all of us out here who need help sometimes (honestly!) I have some handy tips on how to get those dratted drains flowing once again without having to call a plumber every time something gets jammed up down there.
So come on, let’s get started!
Step 1: Determine the source of clogging debris
If there’s a visible buildup in the trap, or around the drains where water gathers during use, it is easy to see what is causing the clog. Bits of food and some mass may be present that need to be cleared. Open the faucet, if possible, to release extra water pressure in order to create a vacuum in the pipes.
If there is no noticeable buildup, then you have to determine where the clog might be located by examining the drains separately.
First look for signs of any food remnants or other debris in each drain individually.
Lift up the trap on both sinks using a screwdriver or some tool that will allow you access under it and determine whether or not there is anything stuck underneath it.
Then lift up each drain cover individually and see what may be there before removing anything.
Step 2: Remove the Clog by Hand
For each drain, be sure to unplug the drain screen and clear it of any debris that might be there. Also, try running water in each one to see if anything comes out or goes down to allow you a clearer view of what’s happening.
In order to clear the clog in your sink, you’ll need some rubber gloves and a flashlight. First off, pour hot water down the drain for 30 seconds or so; this will help melt away any residue from what’s blocking up your pipes underneath. Put on those gloves now–this is messy work! Next, grab that trusty old flashlight of yours (or one if it doesn’t have batteries) and take a look at where all that hair/food sludge has built up behind there… You may be surprised by what else might come out too!
Step 3: Use Boiling Water to Unclog your Sink
Remove any standing water in the sink.
Bring two large pots of salt water to a rolling boil (we recommend adding one-quarter cup of salt).
Carefully pour one pot down the drain, and then test your progress by running a hot tap for 30 seconds or more before pouring another pot down if you have not yet succeeded at clearing out debris from your pipes. Repeat steps as needed until all chunks are gone!
Step 4: Use Baking Soda and Vinegar
Vinegar and baking soda are natural alternatives to harmful drain cleaners.
To use, pour 1 cup of each down the pipe.
Pour a pot of boiling water for rinsing out after an hour.
Step 5: Use your plumber’s snake and/or plunger
The best tool for this job is the auger known as a “plumber’s snake,” which was designed specifically for *this* situation–to clear sink drains without causing further damage or flooding (because you are not using harsh chemicals).
Grab your snake from underneath the basin drain (where you can reach easily), loosen off the end cap on top, feed through until it emerges into one of the drains, and then spin the auger into the drain, wiggling it from side to side as if you were turning a key. Your snake should be flexible enough to go deep, but stiff enough to catch on any clogs that are impediments to your drain water flow.
If this does not work or the snake gets stuck, such that pulling it out will cause something else inside the pipes to come loose, you may need to use a plunger. A good one is made of metal with a rubber seal around it (the type in which one has to “pop” down the plunger like those used at sinks). Place this over both drains so that it covers almost all of them except for small gaps left at each end. Then pump up the plunger with one hand, such that as you push it down into one end, water will be let out at the opposite end of your drains. This should create a vacuum and hopefully pull out whatever is stuck inside there (in addition to any water pressure).
Step 6: Freeing clogs by using an auger or plunger isn’t possible – clogged drain deep in pipe
If you’re going beyond a depth of 4-6″, then you must get into some serious plumbing action. You need to remove all pipes between your sinks from both the kitchen area and bathroom area if they are not already separated in order to have access to the thing that’s blocking your drains–which will most likely be a huge hunk of toilet paper.
Using a saw and some plumber’s tools, cut out the section that is clogged [usually they are square or rectangular], being sure to cut either on one side (the vertical wall) or from underneath so as not to damage your pipes in any way. Then you can use the auger again in this newly created hole to clear out what was blocking the drain all along.
How do I prevent this from happening again?
Start using garbage disposal (when you’re not clogged of course). It doesn’t matter how much time it can save you; if it means your sink drains will never be blocked again, then this is one investment well worth the money. They cost anywhere from $40-$1000 depending on brand and quality, but good ones will last you years without ever breaking down. Most come with a 1-year warranty as well as some form of customer support should something go wrong within that period of time.
Also, consider installing a vent pipe if there wasn’t one installed before when building your home/apartment complex. It’s not a difficult project and is usually done by a certified plumber.
The best way to prevent this from happening is by clearing the trap regularly. You should do this about once a week if you have a large family or use harsh cleaning products in the kitchen. You should do this even more frequently if you notice your water drains take longer than usual to drain or see standing water in the sink.
How to Deodorize Your Kitchen Sink?
You might be surprised to know that the best way to clean your sink is with a lemon. When sanitizing and deodorizing your sink, the juice of a squeezed lemon will leave a lasting fresh scent in your sink. Just squeeze some juice from it and rub it around in circles on top of all surfaces for a few minutes before rinsing off; you’ll notice how this leaves behind an invigorating citrus scent.
Final verdict- A handy tip for cleaning and unclogging your sink regularly
One of the easiest ways to unclog a double sink is by using hot water and dishwashing soap. Fill one side up with soapy warm water, let it sit for about ten minutes before adding more cold from the faucet or running some cool until you have filled both sides equally. Then take your plunger (or something similar) and start pumping on top of it aggressively in small circles around where all pipes meet at one point near the bottom center- this should dislodge any stray pieces that are causing blockage!
You can save yourself a lot of time and frustration by following these simple steps to unclog your sink. Give them a try today!
We believe that the kitchen is the heart of a home, and the sink is its centerpiece. At Best Kitchen Sinks, our team of editors and writers put their maximum efforts into consolidating buying guides and reviews that are informative, unbiased, and helpful for homeowners in choosing the best kitchen sinks and other related products for their lovely kitchen!
Alex Roy is the founder of best kitchen sinks. Being an expert in kitchen renovations, he believes in designing kitchens with the perfect sinks and other appliances to make kitchen tasks easy and free of mess.
Alex Roy knows first-hand the challenges homeowners and business owners face when buying the best sinks and appliances for their kitchens.
Besides the honest reviews on top kitchens sinks and filters, you will also find much information regarding kitchen sinks. From installation and plumbing to cleaning the kitchen sinks and troubleshooting any sink problem, our detailed and step-by-step guides will help you maintain your kitchen sink in the perfect shape at a minimal cost.
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