Sinks are the most used fixtures in our homes, with our bathtubs and showers coming in a close second. As a result, the sinks and the plumbing underneath it all sees a lot of use that can eventually cause problems in the future.
Whether its due to frequent use wearing down the pipes’ linings, gradual wear and tear over a long time or even just a buildup of food scraps and dirt, these problems can end up putting a sudden stop on a family’s day to day life.
It’s one of the many reasons that people immediately get concerned when they hear their plumbing make odd noises. A gurgling kitchen sink can be a big source of alarm, especially if you aren’t sure what’s causing it in the first place. While some gurgling is actually a sign of normal draining, if it gets louder or more frequent, that’s the time you need to be concerned.
This article covers some of the most common ways to stop a bathroom or kitchen sink from gurgling and answers the question, “why is my sink gurgling?”. You can use these tips to prevent any more sink drain gurgling, but if you ever feel that you need professional help, you can call Clover Contracting at any time.
Common causes for a gurgling sink
When it comes to hearing odd sounds coming out of your sinks, the most likely cause is your kitchen sink. This doesn’t mean, though, that your bathroom’s sink can’t be the cause. Regardless of whether you’re dealing with a gurgling kitchen sink or a bathroom sink, the main cause is slow draining water.
If your kitchen or bathroom sink’s partially clogged, the water that goes down the drain can cause a vacuum, occasionally letting out little bubbles of air through that sound like gurgles.
Depending on where you’re finding the sounds are coming from, the clog can be one of a few things. Clogs in the kitchen sink are typically food scraps and similar debris building up enough to reduce the flow of water while bathroom sink clogs are likely caused by hair and dirt.
In both cases, though, there are a few other causes. Both gurgling kitchen sinks and bathroom sinks can be caused by bad venting in your drains. You might also have a shallow drain in your bathroom, which can be solved easily with a sink strainer or getting a new taller stopper. There is also a chance that your sink’s P-trap is broken.
Home remedy for gurgling sink issues
If you suspect that the main cause of the gurgling is a clog, you can try to loosen or clear it out by using a drain snake or a commercial cleaner.
However, if you’d rather avoid paying a lot for a bottle of drain cleaner, you can also try using a one to one combination of water and vinegar and a cup of baking soda. After letting it sit for five to ten minutes, pour some boiling water down the drain to loosen any lingering dirt and wash away the clog.
Another method is to use baking soda and salt. Much like baking soda and vinegar, the salt in this mixture also causes a chemical reaction that can clean out the clog from your plumbing. Mix together half a cup of salt and half a cup of baking soda before pouring it into the clogged drain. Let the mix sit for a minimum of 15 minutes before pouring boiling water into the drain.
How to fix a gurgling kitchen sink like a professional
If your kitchen sink is still gurgling and you’ve tried cleaning out any clogs, you may want to check the P-trap underneath the sink.
The P-trap is the U shaped pipe often directly underneath the sink that’s responsible for holding water to stop sewer smells from wafting out of the sink. If the trap is broken or not properly installed, a vacuum is created that makes the gurgling. Simply replacing or fixing the P-trap should stop the sounds.
In some cases the solution can also be quite simple. If the P-trap and the rest of the plumbing looks fine, you can try flushing the system. All you need to do for this is to turn the water onto hot and let it run down the drain for 15 minutes or so. This works especially well if there is a small clog further down into your plumbing that’s causing the sounds.
How to stop a gurgling bathroom sink like a professional
Typically, the most common cause for the gurgling sounds is a clog. However, since a lot of hair, dirt and soap goes into your bathroom sink’s drain, there’s a high chance that the entire clog won’t break down and wash away that easily.
Much like unclogging a gurgling kitchen sink, you can use baking soda, vinegar or salt for your bathroom sink’s drain. However, to really make sure that the drain goes away, it may be better to use a more caustic drain cleaner.
You can also try out other methods if you can’t pinpoint exactly where or what the cause of the gurgling is. One such way is to flush your home’s plumbing vent. This method might cost a bit more to do, since you will likely need a long enough sewer auger. You can also use water to clean out any potential blockages, though you will need a large amount of force behind the water.
Dealing with a gurgling sink can be fairly easy if you know what the potential causes are. Simple tasks like cleaning out a clog from the drain pipes or replacing your sink’s P-trap are quick and easy tasks.
However, if you can’t find the root cause of the gurgling sounds or you want to safely use something like a sewer auger, it’s a far better idea to call a professional plumber, like one of our team members at Clover Contracting.
Some methods of fixing the problem can be far more complicated, need specific training or might even need special equipment to clean out, so it’s a good idea to call out a team of reliable plumbers for help.