Man and woman troubleshooting kitchen sink

Easy methods to unclog a sink drain


When confronted with a clogged sink drain, your first intuition could also be to select up the cellphone to name a plumber. Resist that urge. You’ll be able to deal with this downside your self and save your self tons of by utilizing the confirmed strategies under. By understanding how a sink drain works and what’s doubtless inflicting it to turn into clogged, you’ll be able to discover ways to unclog a sink drain in lower than an hour with just some fundamental instruments and provides.

Mission overview

Working hours: half-hour
Whole time: 30 to 45 minutes (relying on the tactic)
Ability stage: Newbie
Estimated value: from $0 to $50 (relying on the tactic)

Earlier than beginning

iStock-1255007850 how to unclog a drain and drain cleaning hose


Earlier than tackling that clogged sink, it is necessary to examine a number of containers first. Maintain goggles and gloves helpful should you plan to make use of boiling water or drain cleaner. Additionally, you will want to guage the kind of pipes you need to make sure you select a way that’s secure on your plumbing. When you’ve got PVC drain pipes, do not use the boiling water methodology as a result of the extreme warmth might injury the pipes.


Beneath are all of the provides that you must full all 5 of the drain cleansing strategies we propose under. The instruments and supplies you really want will fluctuate relying on the tactic you utilize to clear the blockage. With that in thoughts, work out your plan of assault earlier than heading to the store for provides.

– Sodium bicarbonate
– Vinegar
– Drain cleaner (elective)
– Rubber gloves
– Plunger
– Rubber drain plug
Moist/dry vacuum cleaner (elective)
– Exhaust auger or snake
Security glasses

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Unclog a sink with a plunger

iStock-909314168 how to unclog a sink drain woman using plunger on sink drain


Soaking the sink makes use of strain to take away the clog and ought to be the primary methodology you utilize to unclog a drain. As a result of soaking would not contain flushing caustic chemical substances or boiling water down the drain, it is the most secure possibility for each you and your property’s plumbing system. Along with a plunger, should you’re unclogging a kitchen sink drain you may additionally want a tapered rubber stopper, which yow will discover within the plumbing part of your native house enchancment retailer.

  1. Relying on the kind of sink you are making an attempt to unclog, you will must seal all drain shops first. If it is a kitchen sink, seal the dishwasher drain to forestall pushing water into the dishwasher. To do that, unplug the rubbish disposal, disconnect the dishwasher drain hose from the disposal, then use the rubber stopper to plug the drain gap.
  2. Take away the sink stopper and fill it with a number of inches of water so you’ll be able to create the suction the plunger must drive out the blockage.
  3. Place the plunger on the drain. To provide the quantity of suction wanted to maneuver the clog, that you must create an hermetic seal across the drain with the plunger.
  4. Pump the plunger up and down a number of occasions. As you progress the plunger, the suction it creates contained in the drain ought to push the blockage via the pipe, breaking it open.
  5. Run the water for a minute or two after the drain clears. Take away the plunger and examine if the water flows. If not, return to the earlier step and maintain soaking till the discharge clears.

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Unclog a sink with boiling water

Hot water pours from a white electric kettle into a metal kitchen sink


If you do not have a plunger or in case your finest dipping efforts have failed, you’ll be able to attempt to clear the clog by boiling it, however solely accomplish that you probably have steel tubing. When you’ve got PVC pipes, skip this methodology. PVC can solely tolerate temperatures as much as 140 levels Fahrenheit, nicely under the 212-degree temperature of boiling water. Making an attempt to make use of this methodology with PVC pipes might soften the pipes or weaken the glue holding them collectively.

To make use of the boiling water methodology, observe these steps:

  1. Deliver half a liter of water to a boil.
  2. Boiling water must make direct contact with the clog to work its magic, so you will must take the sink stopper off and take away any standing water within the sink by both dumping it or utilizing a moist/dry store vacuum.
  3. Pour the boiling water straight down the drain.
  4. If the sink would not drain after pouring the boiling water, repeat the above steps.

RELATED: 14 issues to at all times maintain close to the kitchen sink

Unclog a drain with baking soda and vinegar

Baking soda, white vinegar and a sponge on the kitchen sink


Baking soda and vinegar are a viable resolution for gentle to average clogs and are simpler in your plumbing system than harsh industrial drain cleaners. As anybody who has ever performed the elementary college volcano science experiment is aware of, while you combine vinegar and baking soda collectively, it causes a vigorous effervescent response. When that response occurs inside a drain, it may assist break up clogs.

Here is the right way to use baking soda and vinegar to clear a drain:

  1. Begin by eradicating the sink plug and eradicating any standing water from the drain utilizing a moist/dry vacuum cleaner. For this methodology to work, the baking soda wants to return into contact with the vinegar on the clog, so there should not be standing water within the sink.
  2. Pour 1 cup of baking soda down the drain.
  3. Pour 1 cup of white vinegar down the drain.
  4. Place a plug on the drain opening. This step is crucial, because the cork will direct the response created by the vinegar and baking soda in direction of the clog.
  5. Let the combination relaxation for quarter-hour.
  6. Take away the drain plug and run heat water to clear the blockage.

RELATED: 10 stunning methods to wash with baking soda and vinegar

Unclog a drain with an auger

iStock-524026968 how to unclog a sink drain Plumber unclogging a tub drain with an electric auger


Generally the easiest way to clear a blockage is to bodily pull it out with a drain snake or auger. These units go a wire rope via the drain to clear the blockage. If you do not have an auger, you will want to purchase one, which makes this methodology dearer than different DIY options. That stated, it is nonetheless quite a bit cheaper than calling a plumber. If clogged drains are a reasonably frequent prevalence in your house, a drain snake might be a worthwhile funding.

Normal steps:

  1. Take away any plugs from the drain to clear the way in which for the auger.
  2. Insert the auger cable into the drain by hand.
  3. Rotate the auger deal with whereas making use of strain to advance the cable additional into the drain. As soon as you have met resistance, you have discovered the clog.
  4. Maintain turning the snake utilizing the hand crank or cordless drill till you are feeling the clog come free.
  5. Take away the auger from the drain.
  6. Run scorching water to verify the drain is clear.

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Unclog the sink drain with a industrial drain cleaner

iStock-1429696283 how to unclog a drain Liquid cleaner in a yellow bottle for cleaning sewage drains


This methodology is final on our record for a motive. Industrial drain cleaners use chemical substances which are extremely poisonous and dangerous to the surroundings. Utilizing them too typically also can corrode your pipes. Whereas it is definitely a easy repair, solely use drain cleaners as a final resort. Should you select to make use of a industrial plunger, take into account selecting one which meets the EPA Safer Alternative customary.

At all times observe the producer’s instructions when utilizing a plunger. Usually, you will observe a process like this:

  1. The plunger might want to come into direct contact with the clog, so take away any standing water by dumping it or utilizing a moist/dry vacuum cleaner.
  2. Take away the sink stopper to make room for the plunger.
  3. Pour the plunger based on the producer’s directions.
  4. Wait 15 to twenty minutes for the clog to dissolve.
  5. Run heat water via the drain to rinse out the cleaner.

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Easy methods to forestall a blocked drain within the sink

You’ll be able to take steps to forestall sink clogs by taking note of what you place down the drain and performing routine month-to-month upkeep.

  • Don’t pour grease or oil down the drain. The grease and oil harden and stick contained in the pipes as they cool, creating blockages.
  • Do not let solids go down the drain. Use a sink strainer to catch meals and gadgets earlier than they wash down the kitchen sink drain. Bones, espresso grounds, and stringy greens are some meals you need to by no means flush down the drain.
  • Maintain hair out of the drain. Lengthy hair tangled within the drain is a standard trigger a WC sink clogging. When hair falls within the sink, wipe it off with a tissue or piece of bathroom paper as a substitute of letting it wash down the drain.
  • Use baking soda and vinegar frequently, ideally about as soon as a month, to take away buildup contained in the drain that might finally result in a blockage.

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Closing ideas

Whereas clogged sink drains are definitely an inconvenience, do not add insult to harm by paying a plumber tons of of {dollars} to care for this downside for you. Unclogging the drain is a restore you’ll be able to deal with, even you probably have little expertise with plumbing. Until the clogging is extreme, the above strategies are more likely to repair the issue.

When making an attempt to wash a clogged drain with boiling water, drain cleaner, or vinegar and baking soda, defend your self by carrying correct security gear and ensure the tactic you are utilizing is secure for the kind of pipes you could have.

Some jobs are finest left to the professionals

Get free, no obligation quotes from licensed plumbers close to you.


Author: ZeroToHero

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