Oh, boy. A stopped-up drain. It'll inevitably happen with any home plumbing system and your kitchen sink is no exception. That clog won't go away on its own and will require immediate attention to keep any standing water from rising. But you don't have to resort to calling an expensive plumber or using a bottle of hazardous chemicals. Using simple kitchen staples or common household objects, as well as some determination, you can unclog your kitchen sink on your own without paying a dime.
The biggest reason why kitchen sinks clog is because people aren't mindful of what they're throwing down the drain. Anything and everything goes, from eggshells to kitchen oils. But with such a cavalier attitude, you can either jam the garbage disposal or cause a buildup along the pipe's walls.
Never dump grease or coffee grounds down the kitchen sink. Grease, even when run with hot water, will at some point stop and congeal. Indeed, hot water simply delays the process, pushing the future, greasy clog further down into the drainage system where it will be harder to access. As for coffee grounds, they too can lead to clogs and possible pipe cleaning.
The Family Handyman, which says that most clogs can be removed in minutes, advises not to overload a garbage disposal. In addition to the aforementioned grease and coffee grounds, which will solidify once settled, TFH also flags "meat; foods high in starch, like pasta, potatoes and rice; or foods high in fiber, like celery and corn husks" as no-nos for the sink.
Bottom line, treat your kitchen sink with respect. Care for it in the present to avoid having to deal with big problems in the future. As said, a clogged drain is pretty much inevitable for any home, but it doesn't have to be an issue for long: The lesser the problem, the quicker the resolution.
Got it, but the water is stuck and rising — what to do?! Experts agree that most sink clogs can be remedied through DIY and without calling for professional help. Of course, pros are the way to go if home remedies fail too many times. Too many attempts could potentially cause permanent detriment to a plumbing system. But with hope, the remedies will work before that bridge is crossed.
As for drain cleaners, they introduce hazardous chemicals into your home and emit noxious fumes, the bottles end up in landfills and threaten harm to the environment, and they can also damage the integrity of pipes.
So this brings us to the easy, inexpensive home remedy, which like all DIY projects, can be really rewarding when you see them work. A plunger, salt, vinegar, baking soda, a metal hanger — these are all items we already have in our homes and are truly cheap if we need a new one (see plunger), and are the basis for each of these DIY approaches. Take a look and good luck!
Also, to further prevent your kitchen sink from clogging up again anytime soon, you can use the baking-soda-and-vinegar method as regular maintenance to keep your sink drains flowing as smoothly as possible.