Of all the necessary jobs around the house, unclogging the bathroom sink is undoubtedly at the bottom of the fun list.
So if you’re eager to know how to unclog a bathroom sink in an easier, more effective way – by this, I mean without resorting to nasty chemicals or ripping your hands to shreds – read on!
Let’s face it, unclogging the bathroom sink is a dirty, messy job and needs doing way more frequently than any other sink in the house.
The bathroom gets so much use – with kids’ bath times and showers, it’s no wonder it needs cleaning out regularly.
That’s why I’ve got a great recipe below for a natural way to unclog a drain that needs very little input from your hands.
You’ll be so pleased you gave this recipe a go, believe me!
It contains no chemicals, toxins, or nasties and works far better than anything you can buy in-store.
This post contains affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Get my full disclosure HERE.
how to unclog a drain
First off, it’s necessary to remove any visible drain obstruction if you see it.
I’m talking about clumps of hair around the plug or built-up soap suds – that sort of thing.
I like to use a cleaning hook for this. Doing so creates space for your homemade drain cleaner to seep down and do its job properly.
Wiping over the drain hole with a damp cloth works well too.
While you’re at it, why not give your sink and bath a clean too?
My homemade DIY cleaner works great on all bathroom surfaces.
How to clean bathroom sink drain
Once you’ve removed all that visible drain nastiness, it’s time to make your homemade drain cleaner and pour it into the drain hole.
This recipe is so simple! That’s why I love it.
Just two ingredients and hot water from the faucet are all you need.
Please – take care when making this recipe, as working with hot water has its (obvious) hazards. Wear gloves too.
Homemade Drain Cleaner (safe for plumbing)
Here is the recipe and instructions for the homemade drain cleaner.
*Exact measurements can be found in the printable How-To card below!
- Baking soda
- Hot water (from the faucet)
Combine the baking soda and salt in a jar.
Remove the drain stopper (if applicable) and pour the mixture into the drain.
Tip! You want to splash the water down the drain in small steps – not flood the drain, as this just means the cleaner will wash away and be wasted.
So, carefully and gently splash the water down the drain. We aim to coat the sides of the drain as we do this.
Let it sit for a half hour at least, then run the faucet on full hot for several minutes to wash out.
how to clean a drain
The combination of salt and baking soda creates a powerful cleaning product with a fizz when first mixed together, which removes grease, soap suds, and unpleasant grime from your drain.
Sometimes it takes more than one application to really clear a drain out if the blockage is significant.
You may even need a plunger, depending on how blocked the drain is.
The key is to flush out the homemade drain cleaner once you’re done, using hot water from the faucet, as the flushing action is what washes away the blockage.
Can homemade drain cleaner be used on all drains?
Yes! This works on every drain and is suitable for all types of plumbing.
You can use it on your kitchen sink drain, your shower drain, and even drains in your garden which get clogged with leaves or debris from time to time.
The great thing with a homemade drain cleaner is that you can alter the ratio of salt and baking soda mix.
For a bigger drain size, you would need more salt and baking soda – you could even use a 50/50 mix for a powerful clean.
Can I use boiling water to clean a drain?
No! Putting boiling water down a drain will cause damage, particularly to plastic drains. Therefore, I avoid using boiling water at all costs.
Not only will it cause damage and potential leaks from melting the joints of the pipes, but there is a real risk of harm to you or your family if boiling water splashes by mistake.
Always run hot water from the faucet – never use boiling water!
Why this cleaner works so well
Baking soda was once a staple cleaning product in homes before the introduction of mass-produced cleaning products.
It works because it dissolves grease, grime and dirt. And due to its granular consistency, it also lifts hard, crusty material because it’s abrasive.
You can also use a cleaning cloth or scrubbing brush for hard stuck material if necessary – if you can get to it, that is.
The combination of baking soda and salt makes this homemade drain cleaner even stronger – suitable for unblocking any drain in your home.
Read here how I use baking soda to help rid the mildew smell from washing machines.
tips to keep drain pipes clean
Most drains get blocked at some point, but the good news is there are simple ways to prevent it from happening.
These are my best tips:
- Remove visible hair and muck from the drain hole as soon as you see it build up. Check the drain after showering, bathing and washing up.
- Use a homemade natural drain cleaner at least once a month as a routine maintenance clean.
- Keep your bathroom and kitchen surfaces clean using a natural DIY surface cleaner. This helps prevent muck from floating into the drain.
- Avoid using toxic store-bought bathing products – these block drains worse than anything! Things like plastic sparkles and silver stars you get on bath bombs or in soaps. Avoid using these – they are full of synthetic chemicals (not good for your skin) and also block your drain!
I hope you find this homemade drain cleaner recipe useful in your home and experience the joy of a clean drain!
Let me know how you get on by posting a comment in the thread below.
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- Combine baking soda and salt in a jar.
- Remove the drain stopper (if applicable) and pour the mixture down the drain.
- Gently splash the hot water into the drain. Don't flood the drain with the water, or the cleaner will wash away.
- Let it sit for 30 minutes, then run the faucet on full hot for several minutes to wash out.
Remove any visible drain obstructions such as clumps of hair, grease, or soap scum with a drain hook before pouring the cleaner down the drain.