There is not much worse than a clogged sink. Well, maybe there are, but it’s a sure-fire way to piss me off for the rest of the day. And apparently using commercial chemicals can damage the pipes, which can lead to weakening, which could lead to a burst pipe. This is worse than the clogged sink. You will need a mop and the number for a plumber, so let’s try to avoid this.
First of all, you want to use a plunger. Get a plunger and keep it separate from the one you use for the toilet. I don’t really need to explain why, do I? Didn’t think so. They’re like $12 at the hardware store, so go ahead, splurge! Mark the handle so you can tell the difference from the toilet plunger and the sink plunger. You’re going to want to cover the little hole in the sink with a cloth and plunge the drain. If it doesn’t drain then, you’re going to have to get a snake.
You can rent a snake from the hardware store. I’m not too comfortable with doing this myself, so I usually call my dad for this or a plumber. Basically, you feed the snake into the drain until you meet the clog. Pull it out and try not to gag as you see how big the hairball is. Yech.
What really interests me is prevention, though. You can dump some baking soda down the drain, then add some white vinegar. I usually use about 3/4 of a cup of baking soda and about 1 cup of vinegar. Quickly put the plug in and wait for about 20 minutes. While the baking soda and vinegar works it’s magic, boil the kettle. After 20 minutes, dump the boiling water from the kettle down the drain. This should work to break down the grease and hair and keep them from building up. Do NOT do this on a heavily clogged drain, or the drain will then be clogged with fizzy baking soda and vinegar. This does not really help the situation. I do this about once a month and I haven’t had a problem with clogs in the drains since. You can use this for both the sink and the bathtub.
And, in keeping with the Cleaning Tips and Tipples theme, here’s a recipe for the Joe the Plumber cocktail. I haven’t had this yet, but I’m going to pour myself a big one next time I do my drain maintenance. Hey, it doesn’t take 20 minutes to boil the kettle, so I might as well put that time to good use!
Joe the Plumber Cocktail
3 ounces Red Plum Juice
1.5 ounces Early Times Kentucky Whiskey
Squeeze of lime
Pour the plum juice over ice in a highball glass. Add the whiskey and then the lime. This drink is purposely unmixed. As per Charles Cowdery, Chicago Drinks Examiner, “This cocktail is deliberately unevenly distributed because Joe doesn’t want his money spread around.” I just, personally, think it’s funny that a drink named after a plumber has plum juice (which are fresh prunes, basically) as a main ingredient…