Having just celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of my twenty-ninth birthday, I have had to deal with sinks clogged by a large number of things. In fact, many types of clogs and not just with sinks. Some clogs are easy to clear, and others may take major household renovations to make them useful again.
These are the biggest culprits to watch out for with clogged pipes:
In the kitchen, by far the most common clog is fat. It’s easy to forget to remove bacon grease or other fats from pans or dishes before washing them. After a few rounds of this, the fat can congeal in the pipe and cause a clog.
If you suspect fat, try boiling water and putting it down the sink. This should melt the fat and start to flush it out. If that works, don’t stop there. Turn the faucet on as hot as it will go and let it run for about ten minutes. That will help prevent it from congealing further down the pipes and causing problems again.
Bathroom sinks are the most likely to develop this type of clog. This isn’t going to unclog with just hot water. It also probably won’t unclog with the grocery store variety of products used to unclog sinks. If you can get to a store such as Lowe’s or Home Depot, their commercial product may do the job.
There is a warning to this: we put some down our Corian bathroom sink and it ruined it. Make sure that the surface of the sink will handle the level of chemicals in the product. Otherwise, you will be looking at what we’re looking at… remodeling the bathroom.
Believe it or not, there was one sink clogging done by a pair of socks. The socks worked their way far enough towards the sewer that they blocked both the kitchen sink and the washer. It took a plumber to get them out with a snake.
Snakes are useful things, but manual snakes are not easy to use. If you know how to use one, it may be a good investment. A lot of things can cause clogs that can’t be dissolved from above ground.
When I was a youngster, I lived in an area that had a lot of trees. Now I live in a semi-arid area. I needed the trees we planted, but they (and other plant life) can cause a variety of problems. One of them is clogging pipes.
Most of the time, this affected the kitchen sink and the washer just like the pair of socks. However, the last round also affected the bathrooms. Nothing would drain and that included the sink and toilet. This is not the type of clog to try and undo on your own unless you are a master plumber.
The roots had worked their way up through a break in the pipes to wrap themselves around all the way into the bathroom. It took the plumbers several days to fix the problem. Unclogging a sink may be easy, as with fat but when in doubt, call the professionals.