4 Proven Ways to Unclog a Bathroom Sink
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Nobody really wants to think about how to unclog a bathroom sink. But chances are whether you’re a new homeowner or renting an apartment, inevitability the sink will clog due to build-up, grime, hair, or even a missing earring or lego piece that gets stuck. There's no need to panic and call the plumber, or worse, grab a bottle of Drano, which contains chemicals that can corrode your pipes and harm the health of your family and the environment. Instead, save yourself some time and money with these eco-friendly DIY cleaning hacks. We assure you no expertise is required, and you’ll have your bathroom sink back to normal in 30 minutes or less.
Pour Boiling Water Down the Drain
We’ll start with one of the easiest tricks you can try first because we guarantee you have everything you need for it on hand. Typically, the build-up in your sink is a result of dirt, soap, and hair that have obstructed the drain. An easy way to remove it is by using boiling hot water. Don’t try this option if you have a porcelain sink. The boiling water can crack your porcelain sink, so skip this DIY and try another option below.
If your sink is not porcelain, first, wait until all the water has drained from the sink (yes, this might take a while). Once the basin is empty, slowly pour boiling water down the drain directly from your tea kettle or pot. Generally, you'll need eight ounces of water or more to drain before the sink is unclogged. Try this method twice, and if you notice little to no change, move on to the next DIY.
Sprinkle Baking Soda & White Vinegar
Baking soda and white vinegar are an eco-friendly cleaning duo. Similar to the first method, start by pouring boiling water down the drain. Next, pour one cup of baking soda, a cup of water, and lastly a cup of white vinegar down the drain.
Afterward, cover the drain with the plug and let it sit for at least ten minutes. The next step is straight out of your grade school science fair: Pour another cup of boiling water down the drain, and the reaction between the baking soda and white vinegar should bubble up and remove any blockage in no time.
Feed a Snake Drain Down the Pipes
I’ve seen some TikTok videos where people use a screwdriver with a paper towel or a hanger as a snake substitute. But for less than $10 and a quick trip to the local hardware store, you can get a pack of plastic snakes which will come in handy whenever a drain gets clogged.
The easiest way to start using the drain snake is to feed it down the drain slowly from the sink. Don’t be surprised if it gets stuck. It could be hitting the blockage or you might need to bend it due to the curves in the pipes. You’ll likely need to snake the drain several times, moving it back and forth to pull up the blockage. It’s important to note a snake may only dislodge or move the clog, it doesn’t always remove it.
Use a Plunger
Plungers are not just for the toilet—they can also come in handy with a clogged sink. A cup plunger is best for this task, it's smaller and can get a tighter suction around the sinkhole (but a standard plunger will work too).
Before you begin, remove the sink plug, and unlike the other methods, you need some stopped up water in the sink basin for this to work. Center the plunger over the drain and begin to plunge. You’ll need to do at least ten or more pumps and repeat. Also, it’s important to note you need to stick your finger in the overflow hole and then plunge. And if you have a sink with double drains, you need to plug the second drain with a rag or washcloth so the plunger can get a tight seal on the initial sink and properly plunge.
These eco-friendly DIY strategies to unclog your sink should have the drain up and running again like normal in no time.
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