Did you, or maybe your kid, pour grease down the a sink? That’s likely to be the source of your clog. How do you unclog a sink with grease in it? Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as the many online guides make it out to be. You really don’t want to use a temporary solution for grease build-up, as fat can easily make its way down the drain to the sewer to cause more problems.
DIY Solutions You Shouldn’t Try
A little bit of plumbing know-how will show you that these often-touted unclogging methods aren’t a good idea for your pipes.
- Pouring hot water down the drain: Yes, the hot water will make the solidified grease into a liquid, if its boiling water. However, washing the grease down into your sewer is a bad idea. It will solidify there and could make an even larger clog at the sewer. Sewer repair is much more expensive than sink repair.
- Pouring chemicals down the drain: Few drain chemicals have any effect on fat, they’re meant to deal with mineral buildup. What they do effect is the metal in your pipes. Those chemicals can seriously damage your plumbing.
- Use a coat hanger: Sticking something down your sink isn’t a smart idea even when your clog is solid. You won’t be able to pull out semi-solid fat with a thin coat hanger. If you do happen to push the clog down, it will clog up your sewers.
If you can’t degrease your sink with these methods, what should you do?
Call a plumber, of course.
What Your Plumber Will Do
The best way to remove the grease clog from your sink without causing further damage is to call a plumber. They’ll make sure that all of the grease is removed from your drain instead of being pushed down.
The plumber will likely open up the trap on your sink to pull out the grease clog. This way they can visually inspect the pipes and be sure the whole clog is removed. When they place the trap back, they’ll be sure your seal is still intact, so that your sink will function properly.
Depending on the severity and location of the clog, your plumber may need to use other methods to be sure the grease is removed and that your sewer won’t be affected in the future. For example, they might use professional suction equipment.
How to Prevent Grease Clogs in Sinks
After your grease clog is removed, you may want to take some steps to prevent it from happening again. Here’s what you can do:
- Instead of rinsing cooking pans, collect their grease (from cooking oils, bacon, and butter) in a container and dispose of it in the garbage.
- Avoid putting fatty foods in your garbage disposal.
- Don’t put oil-based beauty products down your bathroom sink.
Your plumber may have more knowledge about what specifically caused your clogged sink and how to avoid creating another clog in the future.