How to Unclog a Kitchen Sink With Standing Water

A clogged sink is a real nightmare for any kitchen worker. Clogging is nothing but the water is locked in the sink and can’t drain. It might be because of the main two reasons. If you have unknowingly dropped a lot of solid waste in the sink and it gets into the pipe and getting clogged and the other reason is that the pipe getting clogged somewhere and it has nothing to do with the sink.

But whatever may be the reason you still need to get it fixed. According to my experience with the sink, hairs are the primary reason for it to get clogged. Some houses connect the kitchen drain with the bathroom drain. If the bathroom drain gets clogged then the kitchen drain also will get clogged. So we should definitely learn how to unclog the sink with little or no tools or with standing water. 

Some of the common things that can cause the kitchen sink to clog are as follows

  1. Leftovers from the food – When you carelessly dump the food leftovers into the sink without even caring to take them out before washing then they might go in and get clogged in a place where you can’t literally reach without cutting the pipe. It is always wise to remove the food leftovers before washing the dishes.
  2. Oil grease – This kind of grease is formed from the oil that is used in cooking. They slowly get deposited in the pipeline and can cause a clog that completely blocks the water.
  3. Soap residues – If you are using solid soap for dishwashing then a few particles might be regularly entering the sink. If they enter they might get deposited in the sink and can cause a clogging problem.
  4. Egg Shells – If you see the kitchen apparatus repairing tips forum most of the people have complained that their sink got clogged because of the eggshells. Eggshells don’t dis-integrate very easily so we need to specially care for them.

First of all, you have to decide whether you are ready to do it yourself. If you feel that you might miss this one then it’s very better to call the plumber and not involve yourself. But if you feel that calling a plumber might not end up budget-friendly then you may have a try. Keep reading to know the different types of methods and actions you can take to unclog a faucet.

Let me list out some of the working methods to solve the clogging problem in the kitchen.

  1. Using a plunger
  2. Using the boiling water to create pressure
  3. Using some baking soda mixture
  4. Using auger on the pipe top
  5. Using a Wet-Dry Vacuum cleaner
  6. Check Garbage Disposal

Before you start using the above methods let me suggest you first use some basic traditional approaches to unclog a kitchen sink with standing water.

  1. Use your hand first – Insert your hand into the standing water and remove the dirt in the filter if any. Sometimes solutions for a complex problem might be simple ones. If after removing the dirt water getting cleared then the problem solved. If not please continue with the next step.
  2. Let it be for few hours – Before diving into the operation we need to know the exact cause for the clog. We need to know either it is a complete block or a block that drains the water very slowly. So just leave it for an hour. If it has drained then it’s a partial block that drains the water very slowly. If not then the clog is full and we need to act quickly.
  3. Removing P-trap and Using Drain Snake – Don’t worry if you don’t know what are these. Just use it if you know them else keep reading we have explained about them in detail.

Okay now let’s start with some really working tips. Get the boiling water ready.

Use the boiling water

boiling water

Out of all the solutions, this one is the easiest. Just get a bowl of boiling water ready. If the double sink is drained then it’s good else drain the sink first. After draining the sink now pour the bowl of hot water into the sink.

Pouring down hot water into the sink causes the pressure difference in the pipeline and the pressure inside increases. If the pressure increase it starts to push away the dirt in the pipe and the clog will be removed.

This method can be used in both types of sink, single sink, and double sink. The method is the same for both.

Using the plunger

plunger to unclog sink

When I asked a plumber about this method, he told me that he prefers this method over boiling water because most of the small clogs get cleared with the plunger. But you need to have a plunger tool for that. If you don’t have it then try to get one from the nearby house if they one. If not then please move on to the next step. If you have it then please read the steps below.

  1. Make sure you drain the clogged water in the sink before you start plunging. Water is required to plunge but not the clogged water. Because clogged water still has impurities. So try discharging the old water and fill it up with the new water.
  2. Submerge the plunger into the water (freshwater you filled now) and try applying pressure to it by pushing and pulling. Hope you know how this works.
  3. If it is a small clog with food particles then it gets pushed out due to the pressure created and the particles are pushed out and the pipe is cleared.
  4. Please be aware that when you apply pressure using the plunger the hose might get damaged so please have a clamp over it so that water doesn’t enter inside the sink.
  5. If the above process doesn’t work, then please move on to another method.

The thing to note: Please don’t use the same plunger for both the toilet and kitchen sink for obvious reasons.

Using the baking soda mixture

unclog sink with baking soda

You might get surprised by the concept of dis-clogging using the baking soda mixture. Yes, we can do it. Also, it is way better than those traditional methods of using harmful chemicals over the pipes. Those chemicals might cause irreparable damage to the pipes. But this baking soda mixture is very friendly to the pipes.

Let’s see the steps to do it. In addition to the baking soda mixture, you also need white vinegar.

  1. You can either mix both backing soda and white vinegar or you can first throw some baking soda into the drain and send a cup of white vinegar back to it.
  2. Then try to cover the drain hole to stop any smoke because of the chemical reaction inside.
  3. The baking soda mixture will do a chemical reaction inside and will unclog your drain. You can see the effect in half an hour.

Alternatively, if this didn’t work then you can also buy some chemical solutions that are available in the market to pour in the drain. This might clear the clogs because of the hairs and pieces of plastics. But in a long run, it might cause damage to the drainage pipeline. So we highly recommend you not to use any chemicals. Try baking soda solution instead of them.

Note: One of our readers suggested that if you don’t have the baking soda mixture ready then you can also use the salt solution (common salt). He did it and got his clog cleared.

Using Wet Dry Vacuum pump

Using Wet Dry Vacuum pump

A prerequisite for this method is a good Wet Dry Vacuum pump. If you don’t have it then please move on to the next step. Here we have explained the ways to solve the clogging problem using the dry wet vacuum cleaner.

If you have a double sink then it is advised to close either one of the sinks. You may cork or any rubber material. Only if closed it will get the required pressure to push the clog out.

Now place the suction pipe to one end of the drain opening and start the vacuum. Keep on the maximum pressure to push out the clog.

Using the P-Trap

Using the P-Trap

P-traps are the curved pipes that are fitted in the sink drain pipe to capture the dirt. If your sink is modern enough then your sink’s drainpipe will have the dirt collection trap. That is P-Trap. Here let me share my experience too.

First of all, we need to find the P-trap in the sink. I googled to find out how the P-trap looks. I don’t know back then. I will add an image of the P-trap here. P-Trap is the place where the dirt that is a little larger and is not drained normally will be collected. You have to remove the P-Trap to check whether it has dirt clogged in it.

If clogged then clear the clog and carefully place the P-trap again. If not then no problem just clean the p-trap and place it. Let’s find another way to clear the clog.

Using the plumber’s snake tool

Using the plumber’s snake tool

Unless you are a plumber you might not have heard about this tool. But every plumber will have this tool. If you are really serious about not calling the plumber for this work, then you can buy a plumber’s snake in any of the plumbing accessories stores.

In order to use the plumber’s snake tool, you need to dismantle the P-trap and the drainpipe that leads from the sink to the outer drain pipe. Then You have to insert the plumber’s snake into the drainpipe until it hits on the clog. You can push hard to remove the clog and make the sink great again. Both the single and double sink clog can be removed with this tool.

Mostly after trying the above methods any of the methods will help you to solve the clog in your double sink. You might have heard the saying that prevention is better than cure. So we need to know how to prevent the sink from any further clogs.

Steps to Prevent Clogs in the Sink

Most of the sink gets clogged not because of the organic waste but because of the inorganic waste. If you cut any piece of plastic over the sink, please remove the small plastic piece from the sink. For example when you cut the milk cover over the sink in fear of spilling milk, then don’t forget to remove that small piece from the sink. These kinda plastic pieces are the main important things that clog the kitchen sink. If you choose the best kitchen faucets, then this clogging issue will not happen.

  • Also, make sure you don’t allow the materials like grease to go into the drain pipe. Keep the sink always clean and dry.
  • Frequently use the baking powder mix and pour it into the sink to remove the clog present in the drain. This will remove any small clogs that are building up slowly. Removing them in the initial stage is easy and good.
  • Another simple solution is to frequently open the hot water into the drain. It will help you keep the sink neat and steady.


Doing plumbing on your own is good, best, and cheap until you know what you are doing. If you mess up then it might cost you more than it would if you hire any of the plumbers. So think wisely and do it yourself. Also, refer to more articles to get a clear view of how to unclog a kitchen sink with standing water. 

Also, plumbing tasks on your own like this will require some tools such as plumbers snake (Auger), plungers, baking soda mixture, wet-dry clean vacuum pump, boiling water, etc. Take precautions before you work on it.

If you have any doubts regarding the methods said here or if you have any new methods that can easily solve this issue and you want to let us know then please leave them in the comments below. If your idea is good enough we will include it in the post with a sweet credit. 

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