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Both Sides Of Kitchen Sink Filling With Water

both sides of kitchen sink filling with water.

Dealing with both sides of your kitchen sink filling with water can be frustrating and inconvenient.

This common plumbing issue not only disrupts your daily routine but can also lead to more serious problems if left unaddressed.

Whether you’re washing dishes or preparing meals, a clogged double sink can bring your kitchen activities to a halt. Understanding the causes and solutions for this issue is essential for maintaining a functional kitchen.

Why Both Sides of Kitchen Sink Fill with Water

When both sides of a kitchen sink start filling with water, it’s typically due to a clog in the shared drainage system.

Double kitchen sinks are connected by a common drain, which often leads to a garbage disposal unit and then into the main drain line.

If any part of this system becomes blocked, water from one sink can back up into the other.

The most common causes of such clogs include:

  1. Food Debris and Grease: Food particles and grease are the primary culprits. When these substances enter the drain, they can adhere to the walls of the pipes, gradually building up and restricting water flow.
  2. Soap Scum and Mineral Deposits: Over time, soap scum and minerals from hard water can accumulate in the pipes, contributing to clogs.
  3. Foreign Objects: Items like small utensils or pieces of plastic can accidentally fall into the sink and get lodged in the drain, causing blockages.

Both Sinks Backed Up Dirty Water

Signs of a Clogged Kitchen Sink

Identifying the early signs of a clog can help you address the problem before it becomes severe. Some common indicators include:

  • Slow Draining Water: If water drains slowly from one or both sides of the sink, it’s a clear sign of a partial blockage.
  • Foul Odors: Accumulated food debris and stagnant water can produce unpleasant smells coming from the drain.
  • Gurgling Sounds: Air trapped by a clog can cause gurgling noises when water is draining.
  • Standing Water: The most obvious sign is water backing up and pooling in both sinks.

Understanding the structure of your double kitchen sink’s plumbing can also provide insight into why clogs occur. Typically, each basin has its own drain, but they both connect to a central pipe that leads to the main drainage line. This shared pathway means a blockage in one area can affect both sides of the sink.

Home Remedies for Unclogging

Dealing with a double kitchen sink clog can often be managed with simple home remedies. Here are a few methods you can try before calling in a professional.

  1. Using a Plunger Effectively
    • To use a plunger on a double sink, you need to create a vacuum to dislodge the clog. Start by filling the sink with enough water to cover the plunger’s cup. Place the plunger over the drain and push down firmly. For effective plunging, ensure the other sink drain is tightly sealed, either by a stopper or with a helper holding another plunger over it.
    • Plunge vigorously for a few minutes, then check if the water drains. Repeat the process if necessary until the clog is cleared.
  2. Baking Soda and Vinegar Method
    • This classic combination can help break down clogs caused by organic material. Start by removing any standing water from the sinks. Pour half a cup of baking soda down the clogged drain, followed by half a cup of white vinegar. Cover the drain with a stopper to keep the reaction concentrated in the pipe. After 15 minutes, flush the drain with boiling water.
    • This method works well for minor clogs and helps maintain clean pipes.
  3. Salt and Boiling Water Method
    • Salt can act as a mild abrasive to help clear clogs. Pour half a cup of salt down the drain, followed by boiling water. Let it sit for a few minutes, then flush with hot tap water. This method is particularly useful for grease-related clogs as the boiling water melts the grease, and the salt scrubs the pipes.

Advanced Unclogging Techniques

If home remedies don’t work, you may need to try more advanced techniques.

  1. Removing and Cleaning the P-trap
    • The P-trap is the curved section of pipe under the sink that often collects debris. To clean it, place a bucket under the P-trap to catch any water or debris. Use a wrench to loosen the nuts on either side of the trap, then remove it. Clean out the trap thoroughly, removing all debris. Reassemble the trap and check if the sink drains properly.
  2. Using a Drain Snake
    • A drain snake, or auger, can reach deeper clogs that are out of reach of other methods. Insert the snake into the drain and push it down until you encounter resistance. Turn the handle to break up the clog, then pull the snake out. Flush the drain with hot water to ensure the clog is completely removed.
    • This method is effective for stubborn clogs located further down the drain pipe.
  3. When to Consider Professional Help
    • If you’ve tried all these methods and the sink is still clogged, it’s time to call a plumber. Persistent clogs can indicate a more serious problem in the main drainage line or beyond, which requires professional equipment and expertise to resolve.

Preventive Measures

To avoid future clogs, it’s essential to adopt some preventive measures.

  1. Regular Maintenance
    • Use drain traps to catch food particles and debris before they enter the drain. Regularly clean these traps to prevent buildup.
    • Avoid pouring grease and oil down the sink. Instead, dispose of them in the trash.
    • Run hot water down the drain after each use to keep it clear.
  2. Proper Usage of Garbage Disposal
    • If you have a garbage disposal, use it properly. Avoid overloading it with large amounts of food waste. Run cold water while using the disposal and let it run for a few seconds after the food has cleared to ensure all debris is flushed down the drain.
  3. Regular Drain Cleaning
    • Periodically clean your drains using a drain auger or a homemade solution of baking soda and vinegar to maintain free-flowing pipes.


By understanding both the causes and solutions for clogs in a double kitchen sink, you can tackle this common household problem effectively. Simple home remedies, combined with regular maintenance and proper usage, can prevent most clogs. H

owever, don’t hesitate to seek professional help for persistent issues to ensure your plumbing system remains in good working order.

George Pinel
George Pinel

Master Plumber

I have been involved in this family owned business for 33 years now.

It has always been and will continue to be the core focus of Instant Plumbing & Heating to provide a long lasting relationship with our customers based on trust and integrity of our service and products.

This achieved by using the best quality materials. I as a business owner continue to mentor and treat my staff with the highest regard and respect, this interns helps them deliver to the client great quality workmanship and service.

It is our professional goal to leave a situation better than when we arrived both in how we do our work and in how you feel for having chosen us to do your work, we are in the anxiety reduction business using plumbing and heating service work to do it.

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