Go Back

How to Prevent a Clogged Sink Before It Happens


Don’t Let a Clogged Sink Ruin Your Day With These Prevention Tips

When a sink suddenly stops draining, it can ruin your entire day. A clogged kitchen sink can impede meal prep, a clogged bathroom sink can prevent handwashing, and a clogged utility sink can affect your cleaning and laundry schedule. Fixing a clogged sink takes valuable time out of the homeowner’s day. A particularly stubborn clog can even cause costly damage to the pipes, requiring professional intervention. 

Luckily, there are many ways homeowners can prevent clogged sinks. Below is your guide to home sinks, how to fix clogged sinks, and how to prevent clogs in the first place.

The Home Sink: A Household Plumbing Staple

technician repairing sinkA sink is composed of three main parts: the faucet, the basin, and the drain. Home sinks are found in many parts of the modern house, including the kitchen, the bathroom, the laundry room, the garage, or even in a wet bar. The home sink is critical to modern life; sinks are used for cooking and drinking, and for sanitary purposes like handwashing, household cleaning, and laundry. Without sinks, modern homeowners would still be hauling water from the well and tossing wastewater over the porch rail into the garden.


Because of their diversity, home sinks are available in a wide variety of styles, from sleek porcelain vanity sinks to durable resin utility tubs. But their function is all the same: water pours from the faucet tap, circles the basin, and goes down the drain as wastewater.

Sometimes, unfortunately, the water stops going down the drain. When this happens, you’ll know you’ve got a clog in your drain. Don’t panic! This common problem can usually be fixed using one or two methods you can try yourself.

How to Fix a Clogged Sink

woman calling for plumbing help


To properly fix a clogged sink, it’s important to first understand what might be causing the clog. A clog is a clump of matter that either partially or completely blocks the drain pipe, preventing wastewater from draining out of the sink. Household sink clogs are typically caused by hair, food waste, lint, grease, and soap residue. It is also important to consider where the clog is located in the drain pipe, as that can affect repair tactics.

Here are the strategies most commonly used to fix a clogged sink:

  • Manual clog removal: If the clog consists of hair, lint, or other solid matter, it can often be removed from the drainpipe using a snake or auger. Sometimes the clog can be shifted using a sink plunger, which is especially helpful if there’s standing water in the sink. These tools are available at every home improvement store.
  • Chemical clog removal: Clogs consisting of grease or soap residue can be difficult to remove manually. Fortunately, there are many chemical products available to dissolve almost any type of clog. The chemical you choose will depend on the type of clog and the severity of the clog. These
  • chemicals are very corrosive: If you live in an older home, check with a plumber before using them, as chemicals such as lye and hydrochloric acid are known to eat away at older pipes. Be sure to read the label carefully, follow the instructions and safety measures, and store the chemicals in a safe place.
  • Professional clog removal: If the first two methods don’t work, your clog may be too large or too far in the drain system for you to fix yourself. Calling a professional plumber is the best way to ensure the clog is removed safely and thoroughly, with advanced methods such as hydrojetting.

How to Prevent a Clog in Your Sink

prevention sign

The best way to deal with a clogged sink is to prevent one from happening in the first place! Caring for your home’s plumbing system is not difficult or expensive. Here are three easy ways you can care for your sink drains and prevent clogs:

  • Be mindful of what’s going down the drain: It may seem easy to wash food waste down the kitchen sink drain, but doing so can later cause a major problem in the form of a clog. Always dispose of larger waste in the trash. Never allow cooking oil, grease, flour, pasta, eggshells, coffee grounds, rice, fruit rinds, bones, paint, clay/dough, motor oil, solvents, or medications to be washed down the drain of your sink.
  • Install sink strainers: The easiest way to protect your home’s sink drains and prevent clogs is to place a strainer or catcher in the opening of the drain. These come in a variety of styles and materials. Most are easily emptied into the trash and are effective at catching hair, lint, food waste, and more. Measure the opening of each drain before shopping.
  • Regularly use chemical maintenance: In the same aisle as the clog-busting chemicals, you will find pipe maintenance chemicals. These chemicals can be poured into the sink drain to break down clog-causing hair, lint, and residue. Using these chemicals regularly keeps your drain pipes open and wastewater flowing smoothly. Follow all the instructions and safety measures on the label.

The ideal way to care for your home’s plumbing system is to entrust it to the professionals. An annual pipe cleaning by the experts who understand your pipes goes a long way in preventing clogs and other costly plumbing issues such as burst pipes. Professional plumbing companies usually offer these maintenance services, which will provide you the ultimate peace of mind.

Trust the Professionals at Oak Plumbing

The professionals at Oak Plumbing have decades worth of experience and knowledge. They offer reliable faucet, sink and garbage disposal solutions for every home or business. With a customer-focused mentality, they back all their work with a customer satisfaction guarantee for your added peace of mind.