Finding Plumbing Issues Early

Double Trouble: Unclog A Dual Sink With DIY Methods

by Chris Bowman

If you have a dual sink, you appreciate its convenience, but you could also find out what a mess it could turn into, especially in dealing with a clog. A double sink clog commonly occurs because of blockage where the sinks join. Though your first thought is to call a plumber, you can fix clogs in double sinks on your own. Here are some tips to unclog a double sink.

Gather Supplies

For this project, you need

  • flashlight
  • plunger
  • bucket
  • baking soda
  • vinegar
  • rubber gloves
  • drain stopper or wet rag
  • drain snake
  • pipe wrench for PVC (plastic) pipes
  • groove joint pliers 

Try Vinegar and Baking Soda

Avoid using chemical drain cleaners, because the clog will stop active ingredients from working, and they can also cause skin irritation if they splash on you. A natural method to unclog drains is vinegar and baking soda. Mix 1/3 cup of vinegar, and 1/3 cup of baking soda in a container, and let warm water from each tap run for about 30 seconds.

If you have PVC piping, don't use boiling water, or it could damage the pipes. Pour the mixture in both sink drains after the water drains followed by five cups of boiling or hot water, wait five minutes, then run the tap to check for drainage.

Plunge and Snake the Drain

Wearing rubber gloves, cover one of the drains with a stopper or wet rag, and fill the other sink with about four inches of water. If your unit has a garbage disposal, turn off the disposal, and plunge that side first.

Press the plunger over the drain in the side with water, and plunge about twenty times. Turn on the disposal, and run the tap to check for drainage. If the sink drains, remove the stopper or rag, and check the other side for drainage by running the tap. Otherwise, keep plunging on both sides.

If the plunger isn't helping to dislodge the clog, run a drain snake down the pipe until you feel an obstruction. Rotate the snake to the right to bring it up and release the obstruction. Test both sides of the sink for drainage.

Inspect the P-Trap

Examine the P-trap, the curved pipe under the sink, for clogs. Set a bucket under the P-trap to catch water as you loosen it, shine a flashlight on it, and remove the slip nuts with groove joint pliers. PVC pipes should slide off by hand, or use a pipe wrench to remove them. Clear the trap of any debris, and wash it thoroughly in another sink. Reinstall the P-trap, and check for proper drainage.

You should be able to fix the double sink clog on your own using DIY methods. If none of the methods work, contact a plumber like Trenchless Pipe Technologies.