Kitchen and bathroom sinks do a great deal of work around your home. So, a clogged sink is likely due to built-up debris in your pipes — everything from crumbs or hair to dirt or grease.
Although stores sell may chemical solutions to clear your drain, these products are harsh and can cause damage to the pipes. Here a few DIY ways to help you with unclogging a drain and preventing clogs from forming in the future.
Boiling Hot Water
Clogged sinks can be remedied with boiling water. Hot water won’t do it — boiling is the key to dissolving any organic matter in your sink. Be advised though: Don’t use boiling water if you have PVC pipes, as the heat could cause the joints to loosen. In addition, make sure to never pour boiling water directly down a porcelain sink as it can crack. Use a large kettle or funnel to pour the boiling water down the drain if necessary.
Vinegar and Baking Soda
If boiling water alone doesn’t clear a sink, you can try using vinegar and baking soda. Start by pouring half a box of baking soda down your drain. Next, pour half a cup of vinegar down the sink and then stop the drain with a metal stopper —vinegar and baking soda produce a “volcanic” reaction. Allow this to sit for 30 minutes before pouring boiling water down the drain.
Baking Soda and Salt
Baking soda is great for cutting grease in clogged sinks. When it comes to clog removal, mix one part of baking soda with one part salt and four parts of boiling water. Dump this mixture down the drain and let it sit overnight. Flush your drain with hot water in the morning.
If your drains are clogged, pour ¼ cup of dish detergent in the drain. Next boil some water. The dish detergent will act as a lubricant and help break down any greasy residue. The boiling water will activate as you use the plunger.
Soda, particularly Coco-Cola and Pepsi, is great for a clogged drain. To start, use a room-temperature can or two-liter bottle of Coke or Pepsi and pour it down your drain. Let it bubble or fizz and work its corrosive magic for an hour or two before rinsing with boiling water.
Soda is loaded with phosphoric acid, which is more acidic than lemon juice. It packs a punch when it comes to removing gunk from your drain and dissolving calcium build up.
If your drain is completely clogged due to large obstruction, use a hand plunger. For optimal performance, use a cup-shaped, not flanged for your sink. Remove any metal strainers in your sink. Fill the sink hallway full with water, then place the plunger over the drain. Use fast plunges to remove the clog and check periodically to see if the sink is draining.
Hand-Operated Drain Snake
Handheld drain snakes are available at your hardware supply store, typically for less than $10. It is used against a clog; they can be twisted to catch and remove debris. If the steel wire doesn’t bend through the pipes, you may have to remove the drain pipe and remove the clog manually. To do so, disassemble and clean out the P-trap. Begin by sponging the water from the sink to reduce the flow under the sink when you pull off the trap. Keep a bucket underneath to allow for excess water to flow out. Loosen the nuts gently to avoid cracking or bending the trap assembly. Unscrew the slip nut between the P-trap. If the trap is clogged, clean it, reinstall it and test the line with warm water. Don’t over-tighten the slip nuts. If the P-trap isn’t clogged, move on and remove the trap arm and clean it. Run a screwdriver around the inside of the pipe and pull out any debris. If you haven’t found the clog, use the snake to reach further.
Whether you are having a water leak emergency in the middle of the night, or need sewer cleaning or drain service while maintaining commercial property. We will dispatch a licensed plumber that same day to help you. Red Lilly plumbers provide a free and honest estimate for suggested services. We also service all of Los Angeles County. Call today to learn more about any one of our drain cleaning services.