How to Unclog a Bathroom Sink

While there are different ways that a bathroom sink can become clogged, there are also different ways that you can unclog it. The best method will depend on what is causing the clog. For example, a clog caused by hair can often be removed with a plunger, while a clog caused by grease may need to be removed with a snake.

Here, we’ll discuss six ways you can unclog your kitchen sinks or shower drains. But if you’re unable to fix the problem on your own, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’re always here to help! Bienvenu Brothers is a full-service plumbing company that has been providing top-class services for many years. We are available 24/7 to help you with any plumbing issue, including clogged bathroom sinks. Give us a call today!

Why is My Bathroom Sink Clogged?

The main causes of bathroom clogs can be grouped into four. It helps to know which one you’re dealing with so that you can use the most effective unclogging method. 

1. Soap Scum

Soap scum is a combination of oils, dirt, and sweat that gets trapped on surfaces during bathing. It is most common where there’s hard water and can build up over time and cause a clog. It can be a good breeding ground for mold and mildew.

To clear a clog caused by soap scum, you can use a plunger and warm water. If you don’t have a plunger, you can try pouring a pot of boiling water down the drain. Be careful not to splash yourself! You can also use vinegar and baking soda to displace stubborn soap scum.

2. Hair

Hair is one of the most common causes of bathroom sink clogs. It can come from your head, beard, or body. Even the smallest amount of hair can clump together and cause a clog over time as it builds up.

To unclog hair from your bathroom sink, you can use long tweezers or a zip-it tool. If these fail, you’ll have to dismantle the whole drain or call a professional plumber.

3. Damaged Pipes

Corrosion, age, or rust can cause your bathroom sink to drain slowly. As a result, clogs can form.

If you think your bathroom sink clog is caused by damaged pipes, the best thing to do is call a professional plumber right away. They will be able to assess the situation and make the necessary repairs. They may have to replace your old and rusted pipes to solve the problem. As a temporary solution, you can use a plunger or drain snake.

4. Something Caught in P-Trap

Beneath your bathroom sink is a curved section of pipe called the P-trap. It is there to prevent harmful sewer gases from coming back up through the drain. The P-trap can also catch small objects like jewelry, hair ties, and more. When these objects build up, they can cause a clog.

To remove an object caught in the P-trap, you have to open up the p-trap and manually take out any items causing the clog.

Unclogging Your Sink

Once you know what is responsible for the clog, you can proceed with the appropriate unclogging method we’ve discussed above. However, if you’re unsure what issue your drain is having, then use the methods below in the order we present them.

1. Baking soda and white vinegar

  • First, unscrew the drain cover and then remove the sink stopper.
  • Measure 1 cup of white vinegar and 1/2 cup of baking soda.
  • Sprinkle the baking soda into the drain and then follow it with the vinegar.
  • Leave the mixture in the drain until there’s no more fizzing.
  • Finally, pour hot water into the drain.
  • You should repeat this process about three times for the best results.

2. Get rid of bathroom hair clogs

  • Take out the stopper.
  • Look down the drain with a flashlight or some other light.
  • If you spot hair, get it out with long-nosed tweezers.
  • If you can’t spot hair, use a zip-it tool to get it out. If you don’t have a zip-it tool, bend a wire hanger and use that instead. Push the wire hanger down the drain and then pull it back up. The hair should be clinging to the hanger.
  • Move the zip-it tool or hanger up and down the drain but don’t force it.
  • If you still can’t get rid of the hair clog, push the tool or hanger in at various angles so as to get as much hair as possible.
  • Rinse with much hot water and repeat the process several times.

3. Plunge

  • You’ll need a cup plunger for this procedure.
  • Remove the stopper.
  • Now seal the sink outflow outlet. You can use a piece of cloth or tape.
  • Lay towels or rags around the sink to avoid making a mess.
  • Fill the sink with hot water until it covers the plunger’s cup.
  • Now place the plunger over the drain opening and make sure there’s a tight seal.
  • Start plunging up and down quickly and vigorously.
  • Test the drain to see if the clog is cleared.
  • Repeat the process a few times.

4. Clean the p-trap

  • Wear rubber gloves and place a bucket underneath the sink to catch any water that might spill out.
  • Locate the p-trap assembly under the sink and look for the slip nuts on either side of the curve.
  • Loosen these slip nuts with your hands and then remove them. You can also use pliers if needed.
  • Remove the p-trap with your hands and pour out any water that’s inside into the bucket.
  • Inspect the p-trap for any foreign objects or grime and remove them with your hands.
  • Clean out the p-trap using a bristle brush.
  • Put the p-trap back in place and hand-tighten the slip nuts. Be careful not to over-tighten or you might damage the p-trap. Turn on the sink faucets to test the drain.

5. Drain snake

  • It’s preferable to use automated drain snakes or plumber augers.
  • Lay rags or towels under the sink.
  • First, remove the p-trap.
  • Now remove the stopper from the sink.
  • Feed the drain snake into the wall drain manually until you feel resistance.
  • Now, using the handle, uncoil the drain snake.
  • When you get to the clog, rotate the head of the drain snake up and down as well as back and forth. You should feel the clog breaking up.
  • Pull out the drain snake and couple the sink components.
  • Clear away any debris that might have come out with the snake and run water to test the sink.

6. Dismantle the drain

  • Remove your sink drain.
  • Replace the old or rusted drain with a new one. A new drain will have a rubber gasket that should create a watertight seal. Be careful not to over-tighten or damage the drain. Turn on your sink faucets to test for leaks.

If You Have a Stubborn Bathroom Sink Clog Contact Bienvenu Brothers

Whether you have a clogged bathroom sink, kitchen sink, bathtub, or floor drain, the team at Bienvenu Brothers can help! We have the experience and proper equipment to clear any type of stubborn clog. Contact us today at (504) 835-7783 for all your drain-clearing needs!