How to unclog a kitchen sink

Not all sinks have a shiny plug hole like this one. The amount of bits and pieces which are allowed into the drains in a kitchen situation can mean that blockages are a common thing which householders have to address. Never fear, even someone with relatively little knowledge can unclog a sink, and it doesn’t take a man’s strength. This «How to» explains the procedure in easy steps so that the sink doesn’t have to be a huge problem and life can get back to normal in the kitchen.


Step 1

First aid.

The first way to try to unblock the sink is to use a plunger. This is placed over the plug hole and the suction caused by pushing it down and letting it rise may bring whatever is clogging the sink to the surface. Try several times as the problem may not be a serious one. You can tell if you have been successful as the water will swirl as it reaches the plug hole indicating that the water is flowing again.

Step 2

More serious attack.

Empty out the cupboard under the sink. You will need space for this stage. Place a bucket underneath the «U» tube. This «U» bend is what helps the flow of water to the drain, and is a vulnerable area, although bearing in mind that the sink is blocked, when you untighten the «U» bend joins, there will be water. Be ready by placing the bucket directly under the bend.

Step 3

Untighten the U Bend.

You will need to loosen the fittings which hold the bend in place. A wrench of suitable size should help you. Turn very gently until the joint is loose and then work this with your hands to loosen it entirely.

Step 4

Unscrew the second fitting.

Unscrewing the second fitting to the «U» Bend will loosen it sufficiently to remove it. This is a messy stage where the water which has been in the sink will flow to your bucket.

Step 5

Clean out the U Bend.

To clean this, remember that you have no drain at the moment in the sink. Take this to another water outlet and wash it out with warm soapy water. You will note that debris will come out of the «U» Bend but this is the whole purpose of the exercise.

Step 6

Resealing the U Bend in place.

You will need some plumber’s tape to help seal the «U» bend. This should be taped around the screw end of the fitment, and the fittings tightened into place.

Step 7

Clean the sink.

Clean the sink thoroughly, and put all items back in the cupboard, after having disposed of the bucket of dirty water outside.

Step 8

Check for leaks.

Before taking the bucket out of the cupboard, run the tap and check for smooth flow, and also that there are no leaks within the cupboard area around the joints you have refitted. If any leaks are found, check the joints and ensure that they are secure and test again until satisfied that the leaks have been rectified.

You will Need
• Plunger.
• Bucket.
• Wrench.
• Cloth for spills.
• Plumber’s tape.

Tips & Warnings
• Always be prepared with a bucket.


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