The P-trap under your sink gets its name from its shape, which allows a small amount of water to collect in the lowest part of the pipe. This effectively seals the pipe against foul-smelling or dangerous gasses that could otherwise be pushed back up into your home. It also provides a handy trap for objects that get lost down the drain. Unfortunately, its design makes it relatively easy for the pipe to become clogged.
Removing and Replacing the P-Trap
From food in the kitchen drain to hair and soap in the bathroom, the P-traps in your home may require removal, cleaning or replacement, depending on their condition and the composition of the clog. This job can be fairly simple, but may also be prone to small problems that become larger as the job progresses.
- Be prepared. You’ll need gloves, a bucket, tools and safety glasses, especially if corrosive drain cleaners have been used to try to remove the clog.
- Get started. Shut off the sink’s water supply before removing any pipes.
- Loosen the fittings. The P-trap is held in place by fittings that must be loosened or removed. Be careful; some of the fittings and pipes may break if too much force is used.
- Clean in out. You may want to hold your nose or look away if you have a queasy stomach; the contents of a P-trap can range from mildly offensive to truly disgusting. After it’s cleaned out, wash it well using a bottlebrush, soap, and hot water.
- Put it back. Clean all connecting surfaces and prepare the trap for installation. If you buy a new one, make sure it fits properly before using any adhesives to reconnect the pipes. Buy PVC, not chrome, if it must be replaced.
Once you’ve completed the job, test the pipes by running some water before removing the bucket used to capture the drain contents.
Getting Professional P-Trap Help
All of this might sound like a lot of work, and it can be. Fortunately, at Ace Home Services, we’ve been helping Phoenix residents with their plumbing for more than 20 years. Contact us today for the most trusted and reliable plumbing services in Phoenix.