So this summer is my time to relax as well as save us some money by DIY around the house.  Yesterday I tackled the plumbing under our bathroom sink, the one in our bedroom.  It’s been draining very slowly for a few months now and has been on the To Do list since the fall.  Yikes. In the mean time I’ve tried various home remedy (not super chemically see other posts on my philosophy of chemicals) products to try to clean it out, it’s not been great and cleaning is really annoying when it doesn’t drain right away, so it was the day to take it apart and truly clean it out.

I began by removing the drain stopper and cleaned that out. I then pushed a wire brush down the sink hole and into the plumbing only to pull it up and have it spray black gunk all over the sink/mirror/wall/floor and me. At which time the brush went away and I started taking it apart.

I unscrewed the “pea trap” I think, the uneven U shaped piece off.  I do know enough to have a bucket under the sink at this point, which was good as the piece was full of gunk.  This doesn’t show how gross it was or how gunky, but I proceeded to wash it, yes even with soap to clean it up.  I then unscrewed the next piece which wasn’t U but had a bend in it and also through the gagging cleaned that out.

Now this was what my pipes looked like and I continued to smell something nasty, so I briefly put my finger into the pipe on the left.  BIG MISTAKE.  All I felt was gunk, no hole or anything.  So I started trying to unscrew that pipe which is attached to the pipe sticking out of the wall.  I couldn’t do it, so after a while I sent a picture text to my dad with a note to call me when he could.  In the mean time I started looking for a wire hanger I could use to dig out the gunk. I even took a picture to confirm the gunk inside the pipe.  Here you can see where it comes from our wall through the half painted cabinet (I didn’t do that) to connect to the sink.

He finally called and confirmed that I couldn’t take it apart due to being glued together so after hanging up, I started digging with the hanger.  I pulled out so much gunk it was really grossing me out. Here’s the hanger in most of the way working on getting the black gunk out of the pipes.

Finally I got what I could get out and put it all back together.  I must have loosened the pipe from the sink because then it started leaking a bit, so I waited till Nick came home to see if he could tighten everything further to prevent the leaking.  I will still probably put some Lye (I have for soap making) down the drain to fully clean it. Anyway, that was the adventure in plumbing for yesterday.