If your kitchen sink features the luxury of garbage disposal, you probably send lots of food scraps right down the drain for convenience’s sake. With crumbs or small bits of organic material, your garbage disposal will most likely not encounter major problems, however, a larger quantity of goop can contribute to creating a clog.

The first reaction when a sink drain clogs is to reach for a chemical drain cleaner and pour it right down the drain. But chemicals tend to be harsh on plumbing and pipes, including any plastic components in your garbage disposal unit or even the metal blades used.

Before resorting to the use of chemicals, why not attempt to unclog your drain with natural compounds that will avoid causing corrosion to your garbage disposal unit.

Here is our step-by-step guide to unclogging your kitchen sink that has garbage disposal incorporated.

Necessary Tools

  • flashlight
  • needle-nose pliers
  • plunger
  • clamps in case of a dishwasher connection
  • pot for boiling water or microwave

Necessary Materials

  • baking soda
  • vinegar
  • sanitizer cleaning product

Step 1: Shut off the power

Do not risk working on a drain when the garbage disposal is plugged in. Unplug your garbage disposal unit.

Step 2: Use a natural cleaner for your drain

Take the baking soda and measure ¼ cup. Pour it into your drain. Now pour in a half cup of vinegar. Allow it to remain in your drain for roughly an hour.

Step 3: Rinse the drain thoroughly

Rinse the drain with boiling water. Let your faucet run for several minutes to clear the drain and the pipes of the clog.

Step 4: Repeat

If the first treatment was not sufficient to completely unclog your drain, repeat as often as is necessary.

Step 5: Search

Should this procedure, with several repetitions still prove inadequate, it’s time for a brief search. Using a flashlight, illuminate your drain and look down into it. Look for a foreign object stuck in it such as a utensil, a bone, bottle cap, or hard object. With a pair of pliers, try to remove any foreign object.

Step 6: Test the Drain with the Garbage Disposal functioning

If you have verified that there is no foreign object visible, or if you have removed an object from your drain, test it. Plug in the garbage disposal unit again. Turn the faucet on to run water. Turn on the garbage disposal. Hopefully, your drain will be cleared.

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Step 7: There is Still Blockage

If the blockage is still present, you can try to free the obstruction using a plunger. However, if you have a dishwasher that is also connected to your garbage disposal unit, you will need to clamp shut the line from the dishwasher to the garbage disposal before you plunge the drain.

Step 8: Plunge Away

Sanitize your plunger before using it in your sink. Position your plunger directly over the sink’s drain, so that it is covered in its entirety. Turn on the faucet and cover the plunger’s lip. Now proceed to plunge for approximately a minute.

Step 9: Check Your Drain

Remove the plunger. Turn on the faucet. If the water is flowing freely, you should run hot water to make sure any residual materials from the clog are removed.

Step 10: Repeat

If your clog is still present, repeat the plunging process until the drain is free.

Method for Unclogging Your Double Kitchen Sink with incorporated Garbage Disposal

The same procedure can be used step-by-step if you have a double kitchen sink with a garbage disposal unit. Your garbage disposal unit is connected to one sink while the other sink drain will not have the garbage disposal unit.

One of the risks with a double sink is that if you plunge on one side, the other sink may fill up, because technically you do have two sinks, but there is one drain! If the drain is clogged it may prevent water from leaving either sink. You may think one sink is clogged because you are only using one at a time.

A good method for verifying this is to plug the sink that does not appear to be clogged, and work on the sink that is clogged.

Step 1: Shut off the power and plug a drain

Unplug your garbage disposal unit. Plug the drain of the sink that appears not to be clogged.

Step 2: Use a natural cleaner

Place the quarter cup baking soda into your drain. Now pour in a half cup of vinegar. Allow it to rest for an hour.

Step 3: Rinse the drain

Rinse the drain with boiling water. The faucet should run for several minutes to help clear drain and pipes.

Step 4: Repeat

If your sink is still clogged, repeat as often as is necessary.

Steps 5 and 6 should be applied if the sink with the garbage disposal is obstructed.

Step 5: Search if the garbage disposal drain is clogged

Do a brief search. Using the flashlight look in the drain. If an object is stuck in it such as a utensil, using a pair of pliers, try to remove any object.

Step 6: Test the Drain with the Garbage Disposal functioning

Plug in the garbage disposal unit. Run water. Turn the garbage disposal on.

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Step 7: There is Still Blockage

If there is still blockage, try the plunger. If your garbage disposal unit is connected to a dishwasher, you will need to clasp shut the line from the dishwasher to the garbage disposal before plunging.

Step 8: Plunge Away

Sanitize the plunger before using it. Put the plunger directly on the drain, so it covers it. Turn on the faucet. Water should cover the plunger’s lip. Proceed to plunge for a minute.

Step 9: Check the Drain

Take out the plunger. Start the water. If it flows freely, run hot water flush out residual materials from the clog. Unplug the other sink.

Step 10: Repeat

Still clogged? Repeat plunging until the drain is free.

A Final Thought

Should these remedies prove to be insufficient, you will need to contact a professional.

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