Guide to Unclogging Your Bathroom Sink Drain

Bathroom Sink Drain© Semevent / Pixabay / Canva

Nobody likes a clogged bathroom sink drain. It can be frustrating and inconvenient. Not to mention, it can also be a sign that something more serious is going on with your plumbing. If your bathroom sink drain is clogged, don’t panic! There are several things you can do to try to unclog it yourself. In this article, we will teach you everything you need to know about how to unclog a bathroom sink drain. We’ll also provide some tips from the experts at Home Depot!

Why Your Bathroom Sink Is Not Draining Properly

If you have ever found yourself standing in a pool of water while brushing your teeth, then you know the frustration of a bathroom sink that does not drain. And while a slow drain can be annoying, a sink that does not drain at all is downright devastating. There are several reasons as to why your bathroom sink is not draining.

One common reason for a bathroom sink that does not drain properly is because of a clog in the P-trap. The P-trap is the curve in the drainage pipe under your sink that holds water and prevents sewer gases from coming up through the drain. Over time, the P-trap can become clogged with hair, soap scum, and other debris, which will cause water to backup into your sink. You can clean out your P-trap by unscrewing it from the drainage pipes and removing the debris with a plumbers’ snake or a wire hanger.

Another reason your bathroom sink might not be draining properly is because of a clog further down the drainage pipes. If the clog is located beyond the reach of your P-trap, then you will need to use a plunger to push the clog through. Start by placing the plunger over the drain and filling the sink with enough water to cover the rubber cup of the plunger. Once the sink is full, plunge up and down with steady pressure until you feel the clog dislodge. Be sure to have a bucket handy to catch any water that spills over when you dislodge the clog.

If you have tried plunging and snaking your drain but are still having problems, then it might be time to call a plumber. A professional will be able to quickly identify any underlying issues and make any necessary repairs.

A bathroom sink that does not drain properly can quickly turn into a nightmare—but it does not have to be that way. There are several things that you can do to try and fix the problem on your own before calling in reinforcements. Most often, a simple plunging or snaking will do the trick. However, if you are still having problems after trying these methods, then it might be time to call in a professional plumber who can help you identify any underlying issues and make any necessary repairs.

How to Unclog a Bathroom Sink

A bathroom sink that won’t drain is not only unpleasant, it’s also a health hazard. Luckily, there are a few easy ways to unclog a bathroom sink without having to call a plumber. In this section, we’ll show you five different methods for unclogging a bathroom sink, starting with the easiest and working our way up to the more difficult.

1. Unclog a Sink With Boiling Water. Starting with easy solutions before using more complicated ones. Boiling water is often enough to dislodge whatever is clogging your sink and get it flowing freely again. Just be careful not to pour boiling water directly down the drain—instead, pour it into a cup or bowl and then slowly pour it down the drain. You may need to do this several times before the clog is completely removed.

2. Unclog a Sink With Vinegar and Baking Soda. Pour 1/4 cup of baking soda into the drain, then add 1 1/4 cups of white vinegar. Let it sit for 20 minutes, then pour boiling water down the drain. The baking soda and vinegar will create a chemical reaction that will help break up the clog.

3. Unclog a Sink with a Plunger. If boiling water and vinegar don’t do the trick, try using a plunger. Be sure to use a small plunger—a toilet plunger won’t work as well on a sink—and make sure there’s enough water in the sink to cover the plunger’s cup before you start plunging. Pump the plunger up and down several times before pulling it off the drain hole to see if water is draining freely; if not, repeat until the clog is gone.

4. Unclog a Sink With a Drain Snake. If you still can’t get your sink to drain after trying boiling water, vinegar and baking soda, and plunging, it’s time to bring out the big guns: a drain snake. Feed the end of the snake into the drain until you feel resistance; when you do, turn the handle clockwise until you feel the snake catch on something—this is likely the clog itself. Continue turning until you’ve broken through the clog, then pull out the snake (being careful not to splash yourself with dirty water in the process).

5. Unclog a Sink With a Wet-Dry Vac. If all else fails, you can try using a wet-dry vac to remove the clog from your bathroom sink (you may also hear this called an “air power” or “air pressure” plunger). Be sure to use one that has enough suction power to work on drains; an ordinary household vacuum cleaner likely won’t be strong enough for this task. Cover the overflow hole with your finger or a rag before placing the vacuum over it; otherwise, you run the risk of dirty water spilling out of your sink and onto your floor while you’re trying to remove the clog! Once you’ve got a tight seal over both openings, turn on your vacuum and wait until you hear suction begin; when you do (it should only take a few seconds), quickly turn off vacuum and remove it from your sink so dirty water doesn’t have a chance to backsplash out onto your floor or into your machine.

There are plenty of DIY ways to unclog your bathroom sink without having to call in reinforcements (aka, paying for professional help). In this section, we covered five different methods—starting with easy ones like boiling water and vinegar and moving on up to bigger guns like wet-dry vacuums—that should help get your bathroom sink flowing freely again in no time!

How to Keep Your Bathroom Sink Clean and Clear

A sink full of dirty water is not only unsightly, but it can also be dangerous. A stopped-up sink can lead to mold and mildew, and it can attract pests. Plus, it’s just plain gross. No one wants to wash their hands in a sink full of other people’s hair and gunk. Luckily, there are a few easy things you can do to keep your bathroom sink clean and clear.

Tips for Keeping Your Bathroom Sink Clear

1. Avoid flushing hair from shaving down the drain. Hair can clog your drain and cause nasty backups. Instead, dispose of hair in the trashcan.

2. Clean your sink’s stopper regularly. Bacteria and mold can build up on your stopper, so it’s important to give it a good cleaning every now and again. Simply remove the stopper and scrub it with soap and hot water.

3. Add a grate or screen in high-use sinks. This will catch any debris before it has a chance to go down the drain. Be sure to clean the grate or screen regularly to prevent buildup.

4. Finish up with hot water. Rinse your sink out with hot water after each use to flush away any lingering dirt or bacteria.

5. Use boiling water periodically. Boiling water is a great way to break up stubborn clogs and remove tough grime build-up. Pour a pot of boiling water down your drain once a month for extra cleanliness power!

By following these simple tips, you can keep your bathroom sink clean and clear all year round! Just remember to avoid flushing hair down the drain, clean your sink’s stopper regularly, add a grate or screen in high-use sinks, finish up with hot water, and use boiling water periodically for extra clog-busting power!

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This article is intended for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only and should not be construed as advice, guidance or counsel. It is provided without warranty of any kind.