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How Do You Unclog a Two-Sided Kitchen Sink?

One of the last things we think about is how the sink drains. At least it is until it stops draining. How do you know what to do when that happens?

You can call a plumber first thing, and when you’re looking for plumbers in Ashville, NC, Four Seasons Plumbing has licensed and trained technicians who will ensure all your drains are flowing smoothly.

However, if you want to try to unclog it yourself, here are some tips that will allow you to do some of the troubleshooting on your own. One of the main items you need to consider is that although you may have two sinks, both sinks drain into the same drainpipe.

Simple Solutions

First, try running hot water down the sink to break through the clog. If that doesn’t work, you may want to try a baking soda mixture of one cup of baking soda poured into the drain, followed by one cup of white vinegar. Wait 15 minutes and follow that with hot water.

Use extreme caution when pouring hot water down your sink. Most sinks use PVC pipes, which cannot handle high heat. The water from the tap doesn’t get hotter than the pipe can take, but if you use boiling water, you could damage your pipes or the glue of the seal around the pipes.

  • Baking Soda
  • Hot water

With luck, this will unclog your drain, but if not, you may also need the items below:

  • Plunger

You may also be able to plunge the sink to clear the clog. To try that, remove most of the water from the sink, leaving only enough to cover the head of the plunger. Block the sink you are not plunging, and make sure you get a good seal.

If that does not work, you may well decide to call a plumber, and at Four Seasons, we’re homeowners too, so we understand the issues you must deal with when you have a clogged sink and we know how to repair it properly.

If neither of the first three methods work, you will need to try using some further approaches that may help you unclog your drain. However, at this point, you may want to call an  Ashville plumber to prevent having to call an emergency plumber.

To try to unclog the sink yourself, you will need the following:

  • Wet Vac
  • Gloves
  • Auger (plumbing snake)
  • Flashlight or lighting – your phone may work, but if you end up having to work from below the sink, you will need to be able to see clearly.

If you are working with a two-sided sink, always make sure to plug the drain on the side opposite the one you are working on. Otherwise, you are just pushing the water back and forth between the two sinks, accomplishing nothing except frustrating yourself.

  1. Wet-Dry vacuum:
    • Set the vacuum to wet suction and put the hose in the drain. 
    • Create a seal in the sink around the hose and drain.
    • As always, plug the second side of the sink with a rubber plug.
    • Turn the wet-dry vacuum on the highest setting. This should unclog the drain.If this method does not work, you can try an auger, also known as a drain snake. If you have a disposal, you will not be able to feed the auger from the top. You can still unclog the sink with the auger, but you will have to cap off the disposal drain to keep the dirty water from backing up in the disposal or dishwasher.
  1. Auger:
    • Feed the auger into the drain until you reach the clog. When you meet resistance, you’ve found your clog.
    • Once you find the clog, you may be able to grab and pull the clog out. However, if that doesn’t work, you will need to push it out. To do this, pull about a foot or foot and a half or extra cable from the auger, and use it to push the clog out.
    • If you don’t meet resistance, the clog may be further down the pipe.

Clogs Further Down the Pipe

If the clog is further down the pipe, you will need to run the auger through the pipe into the wall, which means you will have to undo the connections underneath the sink, and while you can certainly try this, your clog could well be in the main line, and you will need a licensed  plumber in Ashville to clear the drain.

One clogged drain can lead to major problems, and we can handle all your needs, from kitchen plumbing, valve replacement, water pressure, minor and major leaks, water heater repair and installation, to repairs, installation, maintenance, and upgrades to all your plumbing fixtures and service.

At Four Seasons Plumbing, we have a lifetime workmanship guarantee, and our professionals deliver high-performance services and top-notch customer service. Our plumbers can take care of all your plumbing needs and leave your house as clean as when we arrived.

Max Rose - Owner of Four Seasons Plumbing


Max Rose

Max Rose is the owner of Four Seasons Plumbing, a plumbing company in Asheville, North Carolina.