Introduction: 4 Ways to Free Your Kitchen Sink of Clogs

Picture of 4 Ways to Free Your Kitchen Sink of Clogs

A clogged kitchen sink can be one of the most disastrous emergencies in the world, especially on a Friday night when you are supposed to rest after a hard and tiring day at work. Don't stare amazed at the mess and, check up the following tips. They will help you unclog even the most persistent drains.

Step 1: Find the Right Tools

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An ordinary plunger is your most trusted ally in such scenario. You could find this useful tool in almost any hardware store. In general, those with larger rubber bells seem more reliable but a normal plunger (which you might already have stashed somewhere in your garage or basement) will also complete the task.
Important: Make sure it has a tough handle so you can apply plenty of force.
A hand auger. There are various types of it but we recommend a 3/8 in. model that is 20 ft. long. You will also need a flash light, a bucket or some sort of plastic bin, and a pair of rubber gloves.
In fact, the most probable reason for the malfunction is food leftovers. Don't throw tomatoes, rice, celery, potatoes, pasta or any kind of food in the sink. This will save you a lot of time and nerves.

Step 2: Try to Clear the Blockage With a Plunger

Plunge the drain. Then fill 3/4 of the sink with water. Plunge away. Do your best efforts to force the water away. Pump vigorously a few minutes. The plunging can be easy and quick but it could also turn into an absolute nightmare. The water might start to seep over the sink and lead to a flood. Make sure you have lots of cloths just in case. You don't want your home to look like the Apocalypse began, right?

Step 3: Clean the P-trap

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Often clogs in the P-trap are caused by grease or coffee. If plunging doesn't solve the problem, you will have to clean the P-trap. Sponge the water in order to reduce the flow under the sink. Pull off the trap. Keep a bucket underneath it because the dirty water will flow. Unscrew the slip nut between the P-trap and the trap arm first, then the nut at the bottom of the waste tee. If the trap is clogged, clean it, reinstall it and test the line with warm water.

If you haven't found the clog yet, you have a bad luck. Get ready for the snake. Ssss.

Step 4: The Snake Strikes Back

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By now you are probably about to break the sink because of the lost time and the mess around, but please calm down. There is one more card up your sleeve.
Loose the set screw at the tip of the snake and pull out 6 to 10 in. of cable. Tighten the set screw and spin the snake down into the drain line. If you feel the cable hit an obstruction, continue cranking and pushing the cable through the clog until you feel the tip bite through. When you reach the clog, turn the crank counter-clockwise and pull out the cable. There is probably some accumulated waste there so keep cloths nearby.
After this procedure, pour a little baking soda and white vinegar into the drain - a common life hack against unpleasant smells.

Great! Now you can finally get relax and take a break.

Comments

JoColumbo (author)2014-12-04

Nothing you mentioned has worked for me. The sink has a clear trap and the PVC is new. All I can think of is that the Galvanized piping that goes from the bottom of the sink into the floor, must be clogged. I used several bottles of liquid plumber and the natural remedies of vinegar and baking soda, but nothing has worked. I recently used something that was called "Miracle enzyme cleaner", that didn't help either. I put a bottle of a stronger product down and it started to gurgle, but after two days of trying to get it to open up, it failed :( Is there anything else I might use? A friend mentioned a product called "lightening"?, which I am not familiar with and don't know where to get it. HELP!

JoColumbo (author)mamcdaniel2015-03-06

We tried the snake and the liquid lightening, baking soda and white vinegar, it is just 64 years of galvanized crap pipe and everything is stuck to it. We have pulled out layers of black yuck! It still will not drain. The city says the problem lies on our side of the street and will not help us, so it really looks like we may have to dig up our yard to see if we need to replace pipe and We ARE NOT doing that.

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Bio: Eve Stanley is a freelance writer and DIY freak. Her OCD for fixing things will probably leave you scratching your head. Any "apple" remarks in ... More »
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