4 Ways to Fix a Recurring Clog

Clogged drains are a headache we can all live without, but they do happen, and we need to know how to deal with them. If we don’t handle clogged drains correctly, it can lead to even more significant problems.

The best way to fix a recurring clog depends partly on the location and what’s causing the clog in your home.

Some clogs may keep happening because of things you may be doing, such as letting hair go down the drain, while others may result from more severe problems in the pipes that need professional attention.

Here are four ways to fix recurring clogs in your home:

  1. A clogged bathroom sink.

Clogs in bathroom sinks are often caused by hair, which can combine with soap, grease, and even dental floss to create a nasty clog.

To dislodge the clog, remove the drain stopper. Remove the clog with your fingers or a wire coat hanger if you can see it.

If that doesn’t work, you’ll need to use a small cup plunger designed for sinks, as the larger toilet-size plunger will not work as well in a sink.

Cover the water flow outlet with tape or a rag. Place the plunger over the drain, fill the sink with enough water to cover the top of the plunger, and start pumping.

The suction should loosen the clog and let it flow out. Flush the drain with hot water.

If that doesn’t work, the plumbing pros at Chas Roberts can snake the drain.

Slow drains in your home can be the first indication that tree roots have grown into your pipes or sewer line. Unpleasant odors are another sign of possible root growth.  If you have mature trees on your property, they could be the culprits.

Checking pipes for root growth is a job best left to plumbing pros, as it’s a more complicated task than simply unclogging a drain.

  1. Clogged shower and tub drains.

Clogged shower and tub drains are usually caused by hair, soap scum, and even some hair products. Soap residue from liquid soaps and body washes can accumulate in the pipes, causing clogs.

You can try using a plunger to unclog the drain, but if water backs up when you shower, the drain probably needs to be snaked by a pro. Call a plumbing pro at Chas Roberts to fix the problem.

If possible, install a strainer over the drain to prevent future clogs.

  1. A clogged kitchen sink.

Clogs in kitchen sinks are usually caused by food and grease.

Be selective about what goes into your garbage disposal. Some things should go in the trash rather than the garbage disposal to avoid clogs.

Things not to put into the garbage disposal include bones, shells, nuts, potato peels, coffee grounds, eggshells, fibrous vegetables like celery and lettuce, and grease.

Pouring hot grease into your sink can cause clogs, so you should put it into a container, let it harden, and dispose of it in the trash.

It’s best to clean plates off in the trash before putting them into the dishwasher. Clean out the dishwasher drain regularly to prevent it from clogging.

For a clogged kitchen sink, try putting a half cup of baking soda followed by a half cup of white vinegar down the drain to dissolve the food or grease clog. Let it sit for about ten minutes, and then pour hot or boiling water into the drain.

If that doesn’t dissolve the clog, try plunging the sink. If you have a double sink, make sure you seal the drain you’re not plunging to create suction.

It’s best to avoid commercial drain cleaners, as they can cause damage to pipes if used regularly.

If you feel comfortable attempting it, you can also clean the food trap under the sink.

Place a bucket under the trap and loosen the nuts that hold it in place.  If the nuts are too tight to loosen, call a plumber rather than trying to force them to turn.

Remove the trap, clean it, and reinstall it. Retighten the nuts and run the water to ensure there are no leaks.

Call a plumbing pro to snake the kitchen sink drain if the clog persists.

  1. Toilet clogs.

Toilet clogs may well be the most unpleasant clogs in our homes, and most are the result of people flushing things that should not be flushed. Baby wipes, feminine hygiene products, paper towels, and cotton balls are common causes of clogs and should never go into a toilet.

Use a plunger to unclog the toilet, but it’s time to call a plumbing pro if that doesn’t work.

Be sure every bathroom in your home has a wastebasket to dispose of all non-flushable items.

When To Call a Plumbing Pro

There are some circumstances when you should call a plumbing pro rather than trying to fix a recurring clog yourself. Here are a few examples:

  • You’re using water at one source, and water backs up somewhere else, such as flushing a toilet and water backing up in a sink or shower. Drain backups like this probably indicate a main line clog that needs professional attention.
  • Multiple clogs or slow drains throughout your home are indications that a clog is too far into the pipes for you to fix. The clog may be below where the drainage pipes meet or in the main line, but it’s not a repair you can tackle yourself.
  • Your drains have a sewage smell. In the kitchen, your garbage disposal may just need refreshing with a lemon peel or some vinegar and baking soda to get rid of the smell. But if it still smells after cleaning or other drains in your home smell, it’s time to call in the pros.
  • Your drains need professional help when clogs keep recurring despite your best attempts to fix them. When clogs keep coming back after you’ve repeatedly unclogged the drains, the blockage is probably too deep in the pipes to get to without specialized equipment.

A Chas Roberts plumbing pro can locate and fix blockages in your home’s pipes.


Once a recurring clog is fixed, we can help prevent future clogs by being vigilant about what goes down the drain or into the toilet.

We also need to know when to call in the plumbing pros, so we don’t attempt to fix a major problem that’s best left to professionals.

Chas Roberts is the largest HVAC and plumbing provider in Arizona and has been family-owned and operated for over 75 years. Contact us for reliable, affordable service.