How to Unclog a Kitchen Sink

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Many times sinks are clogged in the P trap that hangs beneath the sink. This means the P trap must be removed. Watch as a professional home repairman unclogs a kitchen sink in this free video on home improvement.

Part of the Video Series: Home Improvement & Repair Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm James with JNC Home Repair, today I'm going to show you how to unclog a kitchen sink. First thing you need to know is the first thing you're going to need for this job is you're going to need a basic snake, or a clean out, it's referred to as both terms, most people, in my field, they just call it a snake. It's used to unclog drains. You're going to need a pair of channel locks, you're going to need these to actually remove the P trap and the clean out underneath the sink. Most of the common problems occur just inside the drain, down into the P trap and just in the basic PVC pipe that you see underneath the sink. That's the most common place you're going to find your stop up, that's the reason it's clog. It's usually some food that's gotten left, that didn't get chopped up in the disposal that was just left in the line, and then it goes down into the P trap and it just stays there and there's not enough water pressure to actually push it on out, so it just sits there and then, over time, a little bit more builds up and a little bit more builds up and, sooner or later, it'll clog up and then you got water backing up in your sink and you may think you have a real major problem but I'm almost willing to bet it's probably something pretty simple. We're going to go ahead and walk you through that step today. First thing you want to do is you want to get underneath your sink, clear out some room, you're going to need a little room to work with. You're going to go ahead and remove your P trap with these channel locks and some basic PVC fitting, they're supposed to be hand tight but a lot of times they're just a little too snug to get off with your hand so it's always good to have a pair of channel locks with you so you can just go ahead and break them loose. Once you get the P trap removed, you're going to actually inspect it and make sure that there's no kind of food or any kind of blockage inside that P trap because that's normally where the blockage is going to occur. Once you clean that out, if there's no blockage there, then you know you've got a blockage somewhere past that point up and down into the sewer system, where the water actually drains into the sewer. Run your snake down into the PVC line and actually try to unclog this leak.

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