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Reasons for Blocked Kitchen Sink and How You Can Clear It in a Jiffy

by harry (follow)
Home Improvement (37)     
Kitchen sinks are more prone to blockages because of the higher amount of debris. Even with the best efforts you cannot completely prevent some particulate matter and oils from going down the drain. This will lead to blockage maybe sometime in the future.

BLocked Kitchen Sink
Kitchen Sink

Type of drain

Kitchen sinks usually have a P type trap used for drains that go through a wall. If the drain goes down to the floor then the plumber will usually install “S” type trap. This trap has two functions. One, it prevents gases from the sewer entering the kitchen. Two, the trap collects debris. Over time the trap fills and causes a block. If the drain is a sealed type then something as simple as an airlock can cause a block. How fast your kitchen becomes blocked depends on the quality of installation and most importantly how you use it.

Typical Causes

Food items from your dishwashing causes a kitchen sink to become clogged. You wash dishes and all the food particles and oils go down the sink and accumulate in the S or P type trap and fill it resulting in blockage of free flow of water. In rare cases, there may be an air lock. Another cause for blocked pipes in kitchen sinks is grease. It sticks to the pipe and food particles stick to the grease. Soaps and cleaning powders can accumulate inside the trap and coat the pipes eventually closing the gap. The way the kitchen drain pipes are installed can also be a factor. If the slope is steep then the water will drain away fast but residues will be left behind and these will accumulate and adhere to the pipes resulting in a blocked kitchen sink.

Clearing the blockage

Put together the required tools for the job and then start work. You may need pipe wrenches, a snake or wire rope hooked at one end and miscellaneous tools before you start work on the blocked kitchen sink.

Start with the P or S trap. There will be covers or slip nuts that can be unscrewed. If it is a P type, remove the side nut first and remove debris and shine a torch inside. Inspect visually to see if the pipe ahead is blocked.
In that case you can use snake or wire rope. Push it into the pipe and wriggle it inside and try to turn it in a circular motion so that it rubs against the pipe’s inner surfaces and dislodges residues. There are options like using compressed air or a water pump to pump in water at high pressure. In most cases the simple expedient of a wire rope or snake should be sufficient to clear a blocked drain pipe underneath the kitchen sink. Do not forget to keep a bucket below the pipe to collect waste. Now open the bottom nut and let accumulated debris fall into the bucket. In majority of cases doing this is sufficient to clear the blockage from the kitchen sink.
However, if you are not inclined to open the trap, you can try using soda in the sink and then pour boiling water. Let it stand overnight. Hopefully it should work.
Using enzyme based cleaners is a good idea to remove blockages. Let it stand overnight. It will usually loosen and remove organic debris from the pipe.

BLocked Kitchen Sink
Blocked Kitchen Sink

If you allow the blockage to remain in place it can corrode the steel pipes. Prevent this from happening by taking quick action and also preventive action such as pouring hot water down the blocked kitchen sink at night every other day.

#Home Improvement
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