How to Unclog Your Sink with a Drain Snake: A Step-By-Step Guide by Ground Tech MN Sewer Line Repair

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Ground Tech Minnesota
June 16, 2023

How to Unclog Your Sink with a Drain Snake: A Step-By-Step Guide by Ground Tech MN Sewer Line Repair

Sink drain clogged? Toilet Clogged? Utility Sink Clogged?

First off, we do sewer cleaning & main line sewer cleaning in the Minneapolis Twin Cities, including Minneapolis, St. Paul, Roseville, White Bear Lake and many other areas in the greater Minneapolis region.

Roll up your sleeves, head to the store and get some rags and let's try to clear things up.

Most toilet drains are clogged because of using the wrong wipes, flushing too much toilet paper, flushing other objects or getting clogged with hair and debris.

Showers usually clog front lots of long hair, and the occasional plastic wrapper or random item.

On the other hand, if you've done the below procedure, and it's not clearing, you could have sewer obstructions, blockage or problems further down the sewer pipe.

When do you need a professional sewer plumber like Ground Tech?

  • Drains Won't Clear After Snaking
  • Obstructions are further down the pipe
  • Roots & major obstructions in the sewer
  • Major soap scum or grease build up
  • Pipes are leaking into the yard (random green spots in the yard)
  • You're at your whits end and you can't get it to work

Sewer Clogs are a messy business, but sinks and showers aren't so bad.

Here's where we start, and hopefully you can save some money and do this yourself too!

If you've ever experienced a clogged sink, you know how frustrating it can be. However, you don't need to worry because Ground Tech MN Sewer Line Repair is here to help!

In this blog post, we'll walk you through the process of unclogging a sink using a drain snake. This method works on almost every household sink, not just kitchen ones.

You'll Need the Following Tools & Supplies to Get Started:

  • A 25-foot hand snake (available at your local hardware store)
  • Rags & things to sop up water if need be
  • Adjustable pliers
  • A small bolt that fits under the piping
  • Rags
  • Work gloves
  • Protective glasses
  • Teflon tape
Understanding Drain Traps

Before diving into the actual unclogging process, let's talk about drain traps.

These U-shaped pipes seal the drain and prevent sewer gases from escaping. They also trap small objects and collect debris, making them prone to blockages.

The most common trap types include P traps, drum traps, union traps, and traps with cleanouts. Our demonstration will focus on a P trap with a cleanout.

Drum Trap
Trap with Cleanout

Watch How to Unclog a Household Drain

So, Why the Drain Snake? 

Instead of resorting to harsh chemicals, we recommend using a 25-foot hand snake to clear the blockage.

There are several reason why using a drain snake is a much better option than using harsh chemicals for unclogging drains.

First of all, drain snakes are environmentally friendly since they don't introduce toxic chemicals into the drain or the environment.

They are much safer to use as they do not emit harmful fumes or pose a risk to your health and safety.

Drain snakes are also cost-effective, versatile, and allow for better control over the unclogging process.

They are also less likely to cause damage to your pipes compared to corrosive chemicals.

There is no doubt that using a drain snake is a more effective, economical, and eco-friendly approach to clearing clogged drains without the risks associated with harsh chemicals.

Step-by Step Guide to Unclogging a Sink with a Drain Snake

Step 1:

Prepare the area.

Since drain cleaning can get wet and messy, you'll want to start by preparing the area. Place a bowl under the drain to collect water as you work.

Step 2:

Remove the cleanout

Carefully remove the cleanout fitting and trap or cover. Once the water stops dripping, you're ready to begin.

Step 3:

Feed the Snake.

Insert the head of your drain snake into the opening and feed it in 8-12 inch increments while spinning the drum.

You'll encounter obstructions, which could be blockages or turns in the drain line. Most blockages occur within 10 feet of the fixture.

Step 4:

Keep Track

Make sure to keep track of how much of the snake you're feeding into the line to avoid going too far.

Step 5:

Retrieve the Snake

If you think you've reached the blockage, begin pulling the snake back into the drum. The blockage may or may not be wrapped around the head. Some blockages, like those caused by grease, won't be visible. It may take a few passes to clear the blockage completely.

Step 6:

Reconnect the Drainage

Reconnect the drainage and test the blockage. You might need to apply Teflon tape on the threads to get a good seal on your cleanout trap. Tighten the junctures to prevent water leakage.

Step 7:

Test the Drain

Once the pipes are reconnected, run the water to check if the drain flows freely.

When to Call a Professional:

If the blockage is further than 20 feet, call Ground Tech MN Sewer Line Repair for professional assistance. Our experienced technicians have the tools and expertise needed to handle more advanced drain issues.


You've successfully unclogged your sink using a drain snake. While it can be a challenging process for beginners, being prepared for home repairs is always a smart move.

If you ever need help with sewer line repair or drain issues, don't hesitate to contact Ground Tech MN Sewer Line Repair

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