A slow draining sink is annoying and inconvenient. The situation may seem like just a minor nuisance, but it can signal more serious plumbing issues. And if left alone, a possible clog will only get worse. Pooling water also creates the ideal environment for mold and mildew to grow in the drain. It can also lead to odors, soap scum buildup, and stains.
The reasons for your sink to drain slowly include causes such as:
Clogged Drain or Pipe
A clog is the most common cause of a slow draining sink. Soap, grease, food, dirt, and hair can build up and cause blockages, while solid objects that accidently go down the drain can too. Sometimes you can pull the debris out of the drain or use a plunger. However, plumbers have even more resourceful methods, such as pipe inspection cameras and plumbing augers, to remove clogs.
The P-trap under the sink helps prevent backflow, but it also creates a vulnerability that can lead to blockages. Grease can settle in the bend and harden or other materials can get stuck there. Cleaning the P-trap is a task only a plumber should handle. If you lack experience, then attempting to fix this section of pipe can lead to additional damage and repair expenses.
A clog, buildup of sediment, or a leak in a drainpipe can slow down your sink’s ability to drain water. Drainpipes are different from supply lines. They connect to the main sewer line, so if there’s a problem, wastewater may not drain from your home and can even start to back up. A drainpipe problem is difficult to diagnose without the help of a plumber.
Blocked/Damaged/Frozen Vent Pipes
Vent pipes are important plumbing components that allow fresh air inside, which creates a vacuum that eliminates odor-causing gases. However, air pressure can become imbalanced. This can lead to slow sink draining. Common causes of vent pipe issues include freezing in winter and blockages due to leaves in the fall.
Tree Root Intrusion
Sewer lines have moisture and nutrients that trees thrive on. Tree root intrusion is a common problem; once the roots get in the sewer line, they can spread throughout the system. Slow-draining sinks is only one symptom but can point to the need to replace the affected pipe. Only a plumbing technician has the tools and expertise to correct the problem.
Aging Plumbing System
Plumbing pipes, connections, and other components deteriorate with age and exposure to corrosive substances. The older your plumbing is, the more prone it is to problems, such as slow sinks. You can prolong the life of your system with regular maintenance. But if your sink drains slowly and the plumbing system is several decades old, it may be time to replace it.
Can I Fix a Slow Draining Sink Myself?
While many commercial drain cleaners have chemicals that do more harm than good, there are ways to clear out a clogged drain relatively safely. You can try cleaning out the sink stopper, lifting out the debris with a straightened wire hanger or drain-cleaning tool, or using a plunger or drain auger (snake) sold at a home improvement store. But if these methods don’t work, contact a professional as serious plumbing issues may be in play.
Call Detour Plumbing
If your sink is draining slowly and/or DIY methods to correct it haven’t worked, call Detour Plumbing. Our plumbers in Santa Clarita are experienced at addressing any cause of a slow drain. We provide up-front pricing and find and fix drain and other plumbing issues quickly. Call 661-424-9820 to request service and benefit from our 100% satisfaction guarantee.