Commercial Kitchen Sink Unclogging 101: Make Life Easier

If you’re working in a restaurant’s kitchen, then there is no question that you know the feeling when that horrible sink gets clogged and you’re about to take a deep dip with your hand to that greasy water with food bits floating around… Believe me, I know the feeling as well.

A kitchen sink is an appliance like any other and well, appliances get malfunctions, get broken, or in this case, get clogged! In this article, we will talk about how to unclog a kitchen sink and more importantly how to do it properly!

Simply said, the easiest way to unclog a commercial kitchen sink is to use a plunger to get the water down. After that pour drain clog remover and allow it to work for 15 minutes. Flush with hot water and repeat the steps if necessary.

The steps above usually solve the problem but what if the problem isn’t just grease or a small jam in the pipes but a bigger problem? Well, don’t panic because there’s a solution to that as well and I’m going to walk you through the different methods to try!

5 Additional Ways To Unclog A Commercial Sink

So we already went through the method that usually works but let’s see some other ways that will solve your problem depending on the clog type you have.

1. Natural Cleaner

Some people just don’t like to use rough chemicals and I get it for sure. Let’s see how you could unclog a drain with only natural substances.

Baking Soda & Vinegar

You have perhaps heard that baking soda and vinegar can be used as natural cleaners separately but usually they aren’t recommended used together because of the extreme reaction they make when making contact with each other. However, this can be highly effective against sink clogs and could open even the toughest clogs. I’ll give you a recipe.

First, pour 1/2 cup (125 ml) of baking soda powder into the sink drain, after that locate the drain stopper and get it ready.

Second, pour the same amount of distilled vinegar and quickly place the drain stopper to the drain and hold it down so the reaction won’t come up but is forced down. After the reaction is over repeat the process once again and let it work for 15 minutes.

While waiting for boil 1 gallon (4 L) of water and after 15 minutes pour the boiling water down the drain and hopefully the clog is gone. Below you can find a video of the reaction and then you will understand why it’s so powerful.

2. Bleach

Note that you should only use this method if you’re connected to a public sewer system, don’t use bleach if you’re connected to a well or on a similar system.
Pour 1 cup (250 ml) of Undiluted Bleach straight down the drain and wait for 15 minutes. After that open the faucet and let it flow 3-5 minutes as hot as possible and see if that helps. If the water is flowing faster than the sink is draining stop the process for a moment and continue after the sink is empty.

3. Drain Snake

The Drain Snake can be the savior of the day if you have the right kind of clog. Drain snake opens clogs with hair or something similar that is easily crabbed by hooks and turning motion.

The trick with a drain snake is to move it down the pipe, turn it, and pull it up with a careful and slow motion, don’t ram it down because it doesn’t have the time to wiggle down from the right paths so it could take the best grip of the clog and strongly pull it out.

4. Clean The P-Trap

Cleaning the p-trap is the most manual and hands-dirty method on this list however, it can very well be the most effective and in some cases, the only one that will get the job done.

The reason why it’s sometimes required to clean the p-trap is that if a firm and big piece of food such as a chicken bone or similar get are there, then there’s really no reaction that could push it out the way and needs to be dealt by hand. Let’s see how that works.

1. Get A Bucket

First, get a bucket and place it under the P-trap so you won’t wet your whole floor with sink water.

2. Get Pliers

Now find proper Pliers and turn the slip nut on the trap CAREFULLY and only loosen it enough so you can continue by rotating it by hand. Don’t loosen too much because the water will bust out of the pipe. Slowly remove the slip nut so the water will drip steadily in the bucket.

3. Get A Wire Brush

After the trap is removed brush the interior with a narrow Wire Brush and see if the clog is located inside. You have come this far so you should clean the trap with soap and water while you’re at it.

Pro tip: Don’t use the sink above for cleaning because you will notice a wet floor shortly afterward and you will find the reason from your hand.

4. Re-assemble The P-trap

After the above steps are complete you can re-attach the p-trap similarly as you removed it.
P.S Check out the video below and see how it’s done.

5. Sewer Jetter

If you have a serious clog that didn’t get solved by the methods above then you might need a Sewer Jetter. The way you use a sewer jetter is that when you have removed the p-trap you push the jetter hose deep into the pipe and the unbelievable pressure will take care of the rest. The pressure is so high that it has no problem getting even tough clogs out, it would be a really special case if this method wouldn’t work. You would of course need a pressure washer to get the pressure from and if you don’t have any, you should call a professional for this task. See the video below and hear the powerful pressure.

Now that we have the methods clear on how to unclog a sink, there is one better method that will save you from a lot of hassle and that is preventing the clog! Let’s see what you can implement into your life that would clog your sink less often.

How To Prevent A Kitchen Sink From Clogging

The first and most obvious method on how to prevent your sink from clogging is to simply reduce the items you flush down from the sink. That’s right you don’t need to flush everything down the drain, on the other hand, use the trash bin more often and greatly reduce the chances of getting those clogs.

I get it that in the middle of a restaurant’s rush hour you will without thinking toss waste to the sink but maybe place a note near the sink area so you could at least reduce the waste that goes down there.

Another tip is to use some of the methods shown above before clogging such as baking soda, vinegar, or drain clog remover so the pipes remain more open at all times.

As painful and irritating a clog is, there’s really no way to 100% prevent it from clogging because it’s life and that just happens sometimes. The steps above will greatly help the unclogging process so rest easy as you know how to handle that situation.

Also, you should always have the right sink for your specific situation, for example, if you’re working in a restaurant then you should definitely have at least a double sink.

What Is The Best Commercial Drain Unclogger

There are dozens of commercial drain uncloggers out there but I do have my personal favorite that I highly recommend and that specific one has gotten me out of many tough situations! Recommended commercial drain unclogger is absolutely Drano Max Gel Drain Clog Remover.

Does Coke Really Unclog Drains

As weird thought as that might be, it does unclog drains, obviously depending on the clog but it does work and I’ll tell you how!

First, get a large bottle of room temperature coke and drain it all down to the drain. Let it work for hours and as long as you can up to 24 hours and after that flush, it with 1 gallon (4 liters) of boiling water, and the clog should be gone. If not. repeat the process once again.


This article pretty much covered the subject of sink unclogging and remember that if any of the methods above doesn’t work, you should contact a professional plumber before going solo on complicated and expensive pipes which could lead to even greater costs than the plumber itself.

I personally enjoy unclogging (the right kind) sink clogs because it’s really satisfying to get that dirty water flowing again. It’s a beautiful sight really and I hope that you won’t need to unclog sinks too often and when you do, I hope it’s the easy kind!

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Omar Abdalla

I’m the owner of JRS. While I love writing about food, I also enjoy peaceful and relaxed cookouts at home.

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