How To: Fix A Blocked Sink

What you will need

  • Plunger
  • Chemical cleaner
  • Drain cleaning tool
  • Rubber gloves


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  • 1 If the sink is completely blocked, firstly try filling the sink halfway with water; place a plunger over the plughole making sure it has a good seal. Use sharp, rapid plunges to remove the blockage from the sink. You may need to try this a couple of times.
  • 2 If blockage is in a bathroom sink, put tape on the overflow to prevent loss of pressure.
  • 3 Another option is to try using a chemical drain cleaner/unblocker. Whichever you choose wear goggles and gloves while using the product and read the instructions carefully.
  • 4 If neither of these work you can use a drain-cleaning tool to try and remove the blockage. These tools can be used on kitchen and bathroom sinks, showers and baths. Carefully read the manufacturer’s instructions before using the tool, this is just a general guide.
  • 5 Loosen the screw, withdraw around 300mm of the cable and then re-tighten the thumb-screw
  • 6 Feed the cable into the drain. Hold the tool steady in one hand and turn the handle clockwise with the other hand.
  • 7 If needed release more cable by loosening the thumb-screw. When resistance is met, the screw at the end will have penetrated the blockage material. Take out the screw by turning the handle anti-clockwise, and remove any material attached. Continue in this manner until all material has been removed from the drain.
  • 8 Another method is to remove the waste trap to get at the blockage. Put on rubber gloves Place a bucket under the trap to catch water when you remove the waste trap. Unscrew the trap and empty the contents into your bucket.
  • 9 When the waste trap is cleared of the blockage replace it carefully into position and retighten then turn on tap to make sure the sink is fully unblocked.