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Unclogging A Sink 10 Dos and Don'ts

When was the last time you thought about maintaining your sink? Most of us don’t consider the implications of sink maintenance, but it can be a vital part of ensuring that clogs do not occur.

However, if sinks are left unattended, blockages can happen. If you find yourself with a blocked sink, it might be difficult to know how to handle it, and it isn’t always something you want to call a professional in for.

So, how can you deal with a blocked sink in your home by yourself? We have compiled a handy list of the top ten dos and don’ts you need to keep in mind when unblocking a sink. Read on so that you can handle that blocked sink with confidence!

DO check the strainer first

If your shower or bathroom sink is draining slowly or seems to have become blocked altogether, it can be tempting to try a more extreme method of blockage removal right away. After all, you need these things to work quickly!

However, there could be an easier solution that you are missing. Strainers (or stoppers) are included in most showers, especially as a way to catch soap particles and hair and keep them from travelling further into your pipes and plumbing system. This is good news for you, as it keeps your pipes free and clear. However, if you are not clearing out your strainer regularly, soap and hair can build up and keep the water from flowing freely.

DO use hot water on a slow sink

Pouring hot water down a sink that is draining slowly is a great way to dislodge small blockages. Especially in kitchens, food particles can build up or get caught on their way down and just need some gentle encouragement to get them to go further. This is very common in the u-bend of your sink.

DON’T try and flush a blocked sink

A truly blocked sink cannot be flushed with hot water, and this could actually make the situation worse. Additional water will only mean there is more to remove by either yourself or a professional, and could even cause a small flood. So, stop running that faucet now!

DO be careful with chemicals

You might want to try every avenue, but some of the chemicals on the market today are seriously strong. Think twice before pouring caustic chemicals down your sink or shower. Not only could this be dangerous for your skin if handled improperly, but some might also cause damage to the pipes and could leave you with a nasty blockage that includes some very unpleasant chemical components.

DO try a cup plunger

A cup plunger is something that most of us have in our houses, and using one to dislodge blockages is a great idea. You should plunge gently and check your progress often - in some cases, a few times is all it takes to move that stubborn blockage, so you can fish it out by hand.

DON’T plunge too much

If plunging doesn’t work, doing it more roughly is not going to have much of an impact. Excessive force while plunging can also damage your trap and the connections in your pipes, so you might be left with a more expensive problem than a simple blocked drain!

DO try an auger

An auger, or a drain snake, is a great tool that plumbers use to remove those stubborn blockages. You can gently feed this long metal wire into your sink and dislodge the blockage or break it up so that it can be flushed through with hot water.

DON’T apply too much force

Using an auger with too much force can cause damage to your pipes and sinks. You could cause serious issues by damaging the porcelain of your sink, and even scratching the pipes so badly they could need replacing.

DO remove your trap

As we mentioned, many blockages can occur in your trap or u-bend. You can easily remove these with wrenches and pliers, and flush them through before reattaching them. This is a good way to clean them regularly so that buildups do not occur.

DON’T avoid calling the professionals

If you have tried to fix a blocked sink but all of the above methods don’t seem to be working (or you are simply not comfortable trying them), then do not be afraid to call in a professional plumber. In most cases, they will be able to deal with the issue quickly and easily and can give you advice to prevent it in the future.

If you're looking for a professional plumbing company to unblock your sink, give our team a call today.

Areas Served

Ipswich & West Brisbane
West Brisbane