Dragonfly Treasure: 9 Ways to Unclog a Kitchen Sink Drain
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Thursday, January 2, 2020

9 Ways to Unclog a Kitchen Sink Drain


It can be a helpless feeling when the kitchen sink won’t drain. With water backing up and a counter full of dirty dishes waiting to be cleaned, it may be tempting to reach for the phone and dial the plumber. Before you do, read these easy, do-it-yourself ways to unclog that drain.

1. Boiling Water
This is the easiest and least expensive solution of all, which makes it the best one to try first. Place a pot of water on the stove and bring to a rolling boil. While you’re waiting for the water to heat, remove as much standing water from the sink as you can, using a mug or small pot to bail out the water. Then, pour the entire kettle of water into the sink and wait. If the water stands in the sink and the clog doesn’t move, give the water time to cool and remove it to try again. You may need to repeat the process several times to move the clog, but this often works on many types of stoppages.

2. Disposal
Check to make sure it’s not your garbage disposal that's causing the problem. A clogged disposal can stop up the drain, run the disposal to see if that clears the clog. Then check to make sure it’s running correctly. If the disposal has overheated, you may need to flip the switch found on the side or bottom of the unit underneath the sink.

3. Salt and Boiling Water
After removing standing water from the sink, pour about 1/2 cup of table salt down the drain before you pour in the boiling water. Let it sit for a few minutes, and then flush with hot water to clear the mixture.

4. Vinegar and Baking Soda
 Remove standing water first. Pour about a cup or so of baking soda into the drain, followed by an equal amount of white or apple cider vinegar. The solution will bubble, but when they subside, put the stopper in and wait about 15 minutes. Next, run hot water to see if the clog clears. Repeat if needed.

5. Baking Soda and Salt
This is another combination that can work on sink clogs. Mix about 1 cup of baking soda with 1/2 cup of salt, and pour down the drain. Let the mixture sit for several hours, then flush with boiling water. You can repeat this process if it doesn’t work the first time.

6. Plunger
 If these combinations aren’t successful in unclogging your sink, reach for a common household plunger. If you have a double sink, first seal off the second side with a wet cloth or a stopper. You’ll need to create a tight seal around the plunger, so fill the side of the sink you intend to plunge with enough water to cover the bell of the plunger. Place the plunger firmly over the drain and plunge vigorously several times. When you hear the suction clear the clog, remove the plunger and flush the drain well with warm water.

7. P-Trap
 It may be necessary to clean your kitchen drain’s P-trap to clear the clog. The P-trap is at the curve of the drainpipe under the sink. Place a bucket underneath the drain to catch any water or debris that may fall out. Unfasten the P-trap from the drainpipe and clear out anything that is stuck. Then replace and run water through it.

8. Plumbers Snake
This handy tool can clear clogs that may be stuck further down the system. You’ll have to disassemble the drainpipe and P-trap that runs underneath the kitchen sink to expose the “stub pipe” that travels behind the cabinet wall. This is where you insert the snake into the pipe until you feel resistance to break up the clog.

9. Coat Hanger
If you don’t have a plumber’s snake, you can use a wire coat hanger by straightening it. Of course, it won’t reach as far as a plumber’s snake, but it may be long enough to reach some clogs. Insert it into the kitchen drain or stub pipe to push through or pull out the clog if you can reach it. Be careful not to scratch your sink with the wire.
To keep your sink smelling fresh and running clear, pour in equal parts of vinegar and baking soda on a regular basis. For routine cleaning, you’ll just need about 1/2 cup of each. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes before running some warm water down the drain. You can also use lemon juice for the same purpose.
It’s always easier to avoid clogs in the first place. If you have a kitchen garbage disposal, don’t overload it. Feed items in a few at a time, and wait until they grind and run through completely before adding more. Never put bacon grease, coffee grounds or oils down your kitchen drain, and always make sure you run plenty of water down the drain after each use to keep things running smoothly.

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18 comments:

  1. That's interesting, here in the UK we call that bend in the pipes the U-bend. I usually try the baking soda with vinegar first and then tackle the U bend if it's still slow flowing. Satisfying but a bit grim!
    That's for the tips and alternative ideas to try.

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    1. Yep, I always keep my fingers crossed the baking soda & vinegar works. The U-bend or P-trap is never where any of us want to end up! LOL Hey, P-U LOL what can I say, long day ;)

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  2. All good tips but I haven't tried any of them, I just reach for the sink plunger!! Thanks so much for linking up at the #UnlimitedMonthlyLinkParty 8. Pinned. Have you seen my short story link party? It is a creative writing exercise for fun and without a lot of editing. Just start typing and see what you come up with! Remember, no story is too short! See the party on my site for the current prompt, closes on the 9th.

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  3. Always useful! One of the mondain things that happens all the time. Have a happy new year

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    1. It sure is and at the most inconvenient times - not that there is any convenient time :/ LOL
      Happy New Year to you too. Wishing you only the best ♥

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  4. This is so useful! Thank you for sharing at The Really Crafty Link Party & happy new year!

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    1. I'm glad you think so. Thank you so much for hosting each week! Happy New Year!

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  5. Thanks for posting this. I have a kitchen sink that drains so slow. I'll try some of these. The vinegar & soda trick doesn't work this.

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    1. A slow drain is so frustrating. Hoping one of these works for you! I usually have to resort to the plunger. Good luck ♥

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  6. Great tip! Thanks for sharing on FF Tuesdays!

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    1. You're welcome. Thank you for hosting each week ♥

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  7. Baking soda and vinegar works like a charm! Thanks for sharing your tips at Vintage Charm!

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    1. I use it all the time in my bathroom sink :) Thank you so much for hosting each week ♥

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  8. Thanks for sharing with us at Farm Fresh Tuesdays Blog Hop! You are one of my features this week. Be sure and stop by to see your feature and say hi!
    Melissa | Little Frugal Homestead

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  9. Great solutions for a problem we all face at one time or another. Thank you for sharing at Party In Your PJ's!

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    1. We unfortunately do. Thank you for hosting each week ♥

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*hugs*deb

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