The kitchen sink is something we make use of everyday to wash our dishes and as such food and particles gets trapped preventing free flow of water.
Can P-trap cause sink to back up?
A P-trap is just a pipe that is moulded to have a U shape found majorly under your sink , it is constructed brilliantly so as to prevent unwanted flow of mostly noxious gases, smell or odours from coming into our homes while at the same time does a perfect job in allowing waste flows out.
The P-trap is designed to hold a pool of water which helps it to stop unwanted gasses into our homes.
The P-trap serves other purpose one of which is to trap items that mistakenly fell into the drain. The
P-trap is also known to trap build up of debris which becomes large enough to pass through the drain and when all this pilled up in the P-trap it could cause the sink to back up.
So technically, the P-trap can cause your sink to back up and since it is something that is very much accessible there is nothing bad if you unscrew the slip joint nut and remove whatsoever that is trapped there.
There are times when you get the P-trap cleaned up and the problem still persist, that means you have to look deeper like checking your pipes to be sure that buildup of debris are not blocking the free flow of water.
Buildup like oil, soap, debris and other tiny particles can cause blockages hence there is nothing bad if you run some hot water down the drain to see if you could get anything like grease or oil blocking the pipe to melt away.
What causes a sink to back up?
This list are numerous but here are few of what could cause your sink to back up : – soap scum, oil, Jewelry, valuables, hair and grease, build up of debris etc can cause the your sink to back up.
clog in the sink is regarded as one of the common causes and when this happens water seems to back up.
That’s the more reason we should develop the habit of cleaning the P-trap occasionally whenever the need arises.
Can a clogged P-trap cause a leak?
When ever there is a leak in the P-trap it means that there is a lose connection somewhere; it doesn’t necessarily means that the leakage is caused by a clogged. Because if there is no lose connection somewhere water will hardly find it way out.
Ordinarily to get this fix you should just tighten the P-trap compression nuts ; you can do this with your hand. You should also check if the pipes are misaligned and get it fixed
You can dismember the trap to stop the leak :
Probably you have tighten P-trap compression nuts and everything seems normal but the leak still persist, the next thing to do is to dismember the trap which means taking the connection apart, try and diagnosed what’s the problem from there.
Any of the following problems might cause the P-trap to leak:
- pipe going into the collar is not really that straight
- P-trap washer is not fully seated
- pipe going into the collar is too short.
How best to handle clog
The best way to handle the situation is to call a professional to come help you out but you can still handle it yourself by making use of a sink cleaners and snakes.
What is the correct way to clear the blockage in the P trap?
You need your bucket to catch water, pair of water pump pliers
First you have to remove lock nuts also called the slip joint nut, at this point you should get some water that is trapped in the P trap into your bucket.
Once you have remove the lock nut you should be able to pull the P trap out.
You now have to empty it out and have it washed thereby getting all the debris washed out. When you are done you can now reinstall your P trap back.
How do you tell if your p trap is clogged?
Below is How you could know if your P trap is clogged?
Telling if your P trap is clogged is very easy like for an example when you pour water into your sink, instead of it to flow out easily it will just sits there or it could take lots of time before it finally flows down.
Another instance is When Water does not flow the normal direction rather it will flow backwards all this indicates that there is clog.
All you could do at this point is to have a bucket placed under the p trap while you disassemble the P-trap inorder to remove any debris clogging it.
How often should you clean your P trap?
How often you clean your P trap depends on how often it’s used and also the number of people making use of it.
In a large family , it is advisable to have the P trap cleaned at least once every month.
But if its just a small family with just the wife, husband and kid Expert suggest that You try your best to clean your p trap at least 4 times in 12 months, this will serve as a preventive measure against any build up capable of blocking your P trap.
How do I stop my sink from backing up?
Here are few ways to get clog out your sink without calling the help of professional ; although it is tempting to put a call to the plumber to fix whatever the issue is with your sink.
Check the garbage disposal:
first thing to do is to check the garbage disposal if it’s okay and nothing is blocking it, it might be the culprit here.
You can use the plunger method :
this is a simple method in which you make use of a plunger to pump your drain.
If the blockage is minimal then it should resolve it but if it doesn’t resolve after vigorous pumping then the problem might be resolved by trying other methods discussed below
If your sink is double you will need to close one of the sink so that air do not escape from the other end before you pump.
Boiling water might help :
this method works very well if the blockage is as a result of buildup of oil, grease, soap etc. Just get some hot water and pour it into the sink so as to melt any blockage.
Baking Soda And Vinegar Mixture works magic :
banking soda and vinegar helps against blockage caused by grease, oil, food particles. You just have to apply it directly into your drain in such a way that it get into your drainage pipe.
this is a handy superior plumbing tool that helps take out object from your drainage pipe. But first you should disassemble the P trap and drainpipe all together before making use of the Plumber’s Snake to get whatever that is causing the clog out.
Use a coat hanger:
this is a great substitute for Plumber’s Snake. Since you are not a professional it’s understandable that you won’t have the Plumber’s Snake. This is where your coat hanger comes in place.
Just insert your hanger wire inside the pipe to see if you can take out clog down the pipe. Be rest assured that the coat hanger won’t go as far as it range is limited unlike the Plumber’s Snake.
Cost To Unclog Kitchen Sink
|National average cost||$300|
|Average range||$150 – $500|