We're Open & Here For You! Important Coronavirus Information - Click Here to Learn More

Avoid Holiday Kitchen Sink Clogs

How to Treat – And Prevent – a Kitchen Sink Clog

The turkey is trimmed and the pumpkin pie is baked. The last thing you need during the holidays is a kitchen sink clog! Avoid a holiday disaster with these kitchen plumbing tips.

Garbage Disposals: The Quick n’ Dirty

An overworked garbage disposal is one of the most common plumbing problems on a high-traffic kitchen day. Pay attention to these drain-clogging culprits:

  • Pouring cooking oil, grease, or fat down the drain
  • Putting poultry skins (turkey, chicken) down the drain
  • Putting starchy peels and grains (potato peels, rice) down the drain
  • Putting stringy vegetables (celery, citrus fruits) down the drain
  • Discarding fibrous material (coffee grinds, corn husks) down the drain
  • Accidentally dropping small flatware and cooking utensils down the drain

If the damage is done – you’ve poured that grease, turkey skin, or potato peel down the sink – it might not be too late to unclog the culprits.

If you turn on your garbage disposal and hear a low hum instead of the healthy motor, stop using the appliance immediately. Here’s how to safely check for garbage disposal clogs:

  1. Turn the disposal off and unplug the unit.
  2. Check to make sure there are no tripped breakers in the fuse box.
  3. Attempt to clear the clog by turning the blades manually with a wrench (look for a hole at the bottom of the disposal).
  4. Give the disposal several minutes to cool off.
  5. Plug in the disposal and turn it on.
  6. If the clog hasn’t cleared, it’s time to call a plumber.

Quick Clog Fix

Plungers aren’t just for toilets! Many times, sink clogs can be fixed with a plunger and a little muscle. Use a sink plunger, which is smaller and shaped differently than a toilet plunger. Place the plunger over the sink’s drain hole and form a seal. Pump the plunger up and down, keeping the seal, to help remove a clog.

Stop Clogs in Their Tracks

Cooking for a big crowd this Thanksgiving? Have a plumber snake your drain before Thanksgiving. A little preventative maintenance goes a long way!

If you procrastinated, there are still some proactive measures you can take to keep drains clear. Before you reach for liquid drain cleaners – which are often acidic and damaging to disposal lines – try these tips:

  • Always have sink water running when you use the disposal.
  • Before you bust out the drain cleaner, snaking a drain is the most effective solution to clearing a clog.
  • Pour boiling water down your kitchen drain twice a month. This helps break down food waste.
  • A combination of baking soda and hot water can add more oomph to your drain-clearing efforts.
  • Don’t let clogs sit for days. Food waste will rot and eventually smell, leaving you with a stinky situation.

Whether you’re planning ahead for the holidays with a tune-up or fixing an emergency issue, you can count on Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Pleasantville for timely, professional help all holiday season long!