Using a plunger to unclog a kitchen sink.
Using a plunger to unclog a kitchen sink.

Before using chemical cleaners or disassembling the pipe trap to unclog a sink drain, try one of these methods:

  • Drain Snake: A drain snake is great for removing hair from slow draining bathroom sink or tub drains. Insert the drain snake down the sink drain until it reaches the clog, then pull it back up. The brush or hooks on the end of the snake latch onto the hair and pull it out.
  • Plunger: When using a plunger to remove sink clogs, cover the overflow drain found on bathroom sinks and tubs or the second drain on double kitchen sinks to allow you to apply more pressure on the clog.

After the sink is unclogged, run hot water down it to flush out any grease. Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT
Danny Lipford: Erin wants to know, “What do you recommend as the quickest and easiest way to unclog a drain?”

If your sink is clogged, like this, you’re definitely looking for the quickest and easiest way to get it unclogged. And the over the counter drain cleaners work most of the time, but they can be a little damaging to your pipes.

Before you try that, try this. This is a drain snake and has, a brush or sometimes several hooks on the end that will allow you to reach down and grab any hair that maybe clogging up your sink, particularly in a bathroom.

But if you have a lot of grease and food, you need a little pressure, and everybody has one of these. Very, very effective in unclogging the sink.

But if you have a double sink, like this, you want to make sure you take your stopper on the open side of the sink and seal that off so that that’ll put more pressure on the side of the plunger.

And then that’d be very successful in blowing through the clogged area. Then follow that up with plenty of hot water.

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14 COMMENTS

  1. Try Drain-FX…cleared my drains easily & effectively. Heard about it on the Gary Sullivan show. Bought it online. No chemicals…turns your tap into a mini pressure washer. Cool plumbing tool!

  2. Will this also work on a sink when you also have an installed dishwasher? Are there any other precautions that should be taken with a dishwasher?

  3. Have bathroom sink clogged. Have had two plumbers here, snaked, professional strength drain cleaner used, still stopped up/ won’t drain. Been slow draining since I moved here (3 months ago).
    Utility company pressure cleaned lines to and down sewer. Sink takes 6 hours to drain. Other sinks are fine.

  4. Hi. Snaked with a 25 foot. It only goes so far. Took out as much pipe as i could outside wall and still not able to snake/unclog. Anything helps

  5. We gave a kitchen sink its a double sink with a garbage disposal both sunks fill up with water, the wTer from tge rufgr sunk goes into rhe left sunk. If you take out the water in the left sink rhe water will go diwn in the right sink. We are still clogged. Will be taking pipes apart tiday and try to snake it.

  6. Bathroom Sink Clog: Used baking soda and apple cider vinegar for several years; did not do it this time. I then cleaned the trap, drained out the sink but when I put it back together, the clog came back. Please share any expertise on your next recommended step.

    THANK YOU!!!

    • Hi, Sue,
      Danny says, “It may be necessary to use a ‘plumber’s snake.’ Disassemble the P-trap and run the snake down into the drain. That should free up your clog. Good luck; tell us how it goes!”

  7. The Plunger is your biggest helper….like he say cover one side,plunger the other side….if that don’t help a lot of big jobs like that take going up on the roof top there a big drain up there that can be snaked. Sound like it’s something made up huh, yeah but it’s not,and that’s very effective…love,peace and take care of people around you….love all

  8. I have a double sink and when trying to unclog it, I put a long wooden skewer down after putting baking Sosa and vinegar down both sinks. When I put the long skewer down to see if I reached debris, the skewer hit a hard floor – it felt like metal… what would that be?

    • Hi, Carrie!
      That would be the bottom of the P-Trap (a “U”-shaped pipe under the sink that prevents sewer gas from coming up into the house) or the bottom of the garbage disposal.
      A plunger will work on the kitchen sink too if you cover the other drain while plunging.
      Good luck!

  9. I have a utility sink that clogged put in drain cleane and did nothing. Can’t afford a plumber right now any ideals thank you

    • Hi, Chris!
      Try one of these methods:
      -Drain Snake: A drain snake is great for removing hair and other clogs from slow-draining sink drains. Insert the drain snake down the sink drain until it reaches the clog, then pull it back up. The brush or hooks on the end of the snake latch onto the clogged item and pull it out.
      -Plunger: Use a plunger in your utility sink (apply lots of pressure) and see if that helps!
      After the sink is unclogged, run hot water down it to flush out any grease.
      Good luck!

  10. Ok so I know before I say this that everyone’s will say you shouldn’t do but I tried everything before I did this. My bathroom sink was clogged and I really tried everything I could find and nothing work even took it apart. So then I put a small amount of nair hair removal in the drain let it set bout 15 minutes slowest flused with boiling water and I haven’t had a problem since.! It didn’t mess up my pipes and it was quick and easy.

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