you're in the
home improvement zone--YOUR HANDYMAN ZONE!
Sink drain is clogged.
Tools / Materials (See Below for
Drain auger (plumber's snake)
Drill snake (drain snake attachment that is
attached to a power drill)
Locking pliers / Channellock®
pliers by Channellock, Inc.
Sink cleaner, like Tilex®
by The Clorox Company, or other detergents like Ajax®
by Phoenix Brands, LLC.
Over the course of the use of your sink, you
may find that your sink becomes clogged, causing water to even
accumulate above the sink strainer. With some effort, this
annoying clog can be unclogged.
Caution: When dealing with drainage maintenance,
such as snaking a drain, make sure you take precautions, including
wearing rubber gloves; read all product manufacturer instructions.
Unclog your sink drain in a few steps,
and here's how:
First, remove the
sink trap (i.e., the bottom, u-shaped pipe piece of the sink):
Set up a bucket underneath the sink trap, and then remove the
cleanout plug, as may be applicable, by unscrewing such a plug
from the bottom of the sink trap with locking pliers or Channellock®
pliers. Whether water flows freely from the opening of
this removed plug depends on where the clog is at: Water
will flow freely into the bucket underneath if the clog is in
the piping behind the wall and not in the immediate opening of
the sink piping/trap.
Once the water drains to a stop after removing the cleanout plug, go
ahead and take the last step of removing the sink trap: With
such pliers or a spud wrench, turn the coupling around both ends of
the trap counterclockwise to loosen them to the point that the sink
trap becomes free from the rest of the piping and is put to the side
for the time being.
With the sink trap removed, use a drain auger or drill snake
(attached to a power drill) to remove the clog from the sink
drain; follow the drain auger or drill snake manufacturer's
instructions in snaking the drain uncovered by the removal of
the sink trap until the clog is reached and
removed; be careful to have a trash bag or bucket on hand to
contain the mess as you retrieve and recoil your auger
snake/plumber's snake and discard the clogging substance.
Then, go ahead and screw the
sink trap back into place, back attached to the rest of the
piping of the sink, using either locking pliers, Channellock®
pliers or a spud wrench to ensure that the couplings of the sink
trap are properly tightened; of course, the cleanout plug should
also already be screwed back into place at the bottom of the
To ensure that you maintain a clean, safe sink, after snaking
the sink drain, clean the sink, using a sink cleaner and
cloths/rags; read the sink cleaner manufacturer's
That's what it takes to unclog a sink drain.
Handyman Zone Team
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