Wednesday, February 20, 2013

unclogging that nasty sink

Plumbing problems are always pretty nasty and I would be the first to advise using a professional when needed. A clogged kitchen sink all though gross isn't one of these times. In about 15 minutes you can save yourself $80 bucks or more...

Most of us have probably experienced a backed up sink as it will happen from time to time. In most cases it's easily unclogged in a few minutes with a few steps. I say why not save yourself some cash and go for it, do it yourself..

the problem (a nasty clogged sink)

Step 1, clean out under the sink. Remove anything that will prevent you clear access with a large bucket. I use a 5 gallon bucket because it has the capacity for the entire sink to drain out if necessary.

step 1, cleaning out under the sink

Step 2, place a towel on the bottom of cabinet for spillage. Most cabinets with exception to the door are made out of particle board. Particle board and water aren't a good combination so it's a good idea to protect them.

step 2, protecting cabinet bottom from possible spillage

Step 3, where's the blockage. Almost every time the blockage is at the "T" fitting as shown on the left side of photo. The T fitting isn't always on the left it simply depends what side your garbage disposal is on. An easy way to find this fitting it's always opposite end of disposal.

step 3, viewing the "T" connection where the clog is

Step 4, loosening the connection. This connection should be hand tight. With your bucket in place and ready to go loosen with your hand the connection and place pipe end into the bucket to drain. If you look close at the second photo in this step you can see the clogged area at the "T" fitting. With your finger remove the junk. you may need to remove junk from the pipe itself. If it's packed beyond your reach you can turn on the garbage disposal, this will help flush it out (Make sure your buckets positioned to catch the junk because it's going to shoot out). Once completely drained remove Teflon ring and threaded connector.

step 4, loosening the connection
step 4, draining the sink removing the clog

Step 5, re-connecting fittings and Teflon ring. It's a good idea at this time to clean off or wipe down all your pipes and hardware. Insert your Teflon ring into "T" fitting, place connector back on to the drain pipe and only hand tighten (if you over tighten the Teflon ring wont locate properly and you will have a leak). Run the water and test for leakage and water flow. If all is good than job is done, the problems solved, and you saved the cash, NICE!!

step 5, connector and ring
step 5, inserting the Teflon ring back into the "T" fitting
step 5, the final connection made
step 5, all is good and ready to go

Plumbing is a specialty trade for sure but a clogged kitchen sink is pretty manageable for an average homeowner to resolve. Be sure to follow the few basic steps and in the future save yourself a few bucks...


  1. Plumbing is not my forte! I tried to learn to do the basics, but it’s just that plumbing is not my skill. That’s why, at home, we try our best to take care of our sink by not stuffing it with materials that might clog it. Discipline is what will keep your sink free from leaks and other damages.

  2. Plumbing may sound easy as a pie for others, but not for me. So, we have something in common, Darry. LOL! =D The only thing I can do is to prevent any clogging or freezing in our plumbing system. Prevention is better than cure, right? But if things go beyond my control, there's always our trusty plumber to help us out.

    Althea Tumlin

  3. I got the similar project regarding plumbing T Y shape and there were some good pictures. I loved the title you use that is really nasty! Anyway, the downward images made me satisfied for this project.


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