5 Common Culprits of a Clogged Bathroom Sink
We hate to break it to you, but toilets aren’t the only places in the bathroom that fall victim to clogs. The bathroom sink is just as susceptible to this common plumbing problem. Every day, seemingly harmless items you use in the sink actually have the potential to cause serious issues in your pipes, and the pipes themselves can wreak havoc on the drain system.
Let’s list them in order of severity – with the easiest fixes first.
- Hair. Contrary to popular belief, every type of hair can lead to clogged drains. Even short facial hair or pet hair can clump together and cause a blockage in your bathroom sink. When hair is to blame for the backup, we recommend using a Zip-It tool to retrieve the hair, then installing a drain straining device to prevent the issue from happening in the future.
- Dirty Stopper. The drain stopper is a small-but-mighty mechanism that stops debris from reaching your pipes in the bathroom sink. When the stopper itself is grimy, it can lead to the sink draining slow as soon as the water starts flowing from the faucet. To remove the drain stopper, you will either be able to pull it directly out of the drain or you might need to remove the pivot rod that holds it in place. (To do this, locate the pivot rod and twist it out using either your hand or a small pair of pliers). Once the stopper is removed, inspect it for buildup and clean it accordingly.
- Clog in the P-trap. This one might seem like a daunting fix, but accessing the P-trap is typically pretty straight-forward. The P-trap is the bent part of the drain pipe that is located beneath the sink. This bend might seem like a design flaw, but the shape of the P-trap is important to prevent gases from flowing up through the drain and acts as a reservoir for water, which creates suction to clear the drain.
Unfortunately, the bend in the P-trap also makes it more susceptible to holding foreign objects and clog culprits. To remove the P-trap, turn off the water source to your sink and have a small bucket on-hand to catch any old (sometimes stinky) water that will likely be left in the trap. Once you have removed the P-trap, clean it of noticeable debris and scrub it thoroughly with an old toothbrush or small scrub brush to prevent any small buildup. Once the trap is cleaned, simply install it back the way you found it.
- Hard water, soap scum, and other residue. Washing your hands is obviously necessary, but certain soaps can create issues in your bathroom sink. Hard water and soap scum are less common culprits for bathroom sink clogs, but that’s not to say they don’t happen. When soap scum or residue from hard water sticks to the walls of your pipes, it has a tendency to become sticky – thus making every other item that passes it stick as well. (Remember that hair we talked about in #1?) Chunks of soap can also get stuck in the P-trap, or lead to even worse problems by corroding the pipes themselves.
- Pipe problems. Last but certainly not least, pipe problems are a major cause of concern when it comes to a clog in the bathroom sink. Old pipes are more prone to corrosion and sagging over time, which can lead to damaging clogs. To determine whether or not the pipes are the root of the problem in your bathroom sink, enlist the help of a plumbing team to troubleshoot the issue.
Drain cleaning service in Schererville, IN
A clogged drain – no matter the location or cause – can be a major headache in your home. It’s also an issue that will only get worse if left unattended. If you tried inspecting the areas listed above but can seem to clear the blockage, then call the friendly team at Reichelt Plumbing. We have the tools and know-how to fix even the most stubborn of clogs. Call us today at (219) 322-4906.