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Unclogging a Sink Drain Trap


One of the most common household plumbing problems is a clogged sink drain trap. Mostly, it's because traps work by gravity - holding water in them to prevent sewer gases from coming up into the house. Gravity, however, works to hold an accumulation of grease, soap and hair that, over the years, turns into a gunky mess. Fortunately, this is one of the easiest plumbing fix-its. You can clean out a trap in a few minutes by taking off the trap and dumping out debris.




Step 1

Step 1: Remove water from the pipe, unscrew the nut and slide

First, put a bucket under the trap to catch water and debris. Then loosen the slip nuts on the trap using a pair of slip joint pliers. Unscrew the nuts by hand, and slide them away from the connections

Step 2

Step 2: Remove the dump and clean the trap

Dump the debris into the bucket, and clean the trap with a small wire brush. Rinse the trap out in hot water. (Remember that you just disconnected your drain pipe!) Inspect the slip nut washers for wear, and replace them if necessary. Reinstall the trap, and tighten the slip nuts.