How to Clear a Blocked Basin Drain


Despite how annoying and inconvenient a blocked basin drain can be, you can frequently unclog it with the correct equipment and methods. A basin drain, or a sink drain, is the opening at the bottom of a sink or basin that allows water to flow out. It handles the flow of water and waste from your sink, but debris and hair can sometimes accumulate and cause blockages.

A photo of a blocked drain that All Needs Plumbing can resolve.

What is a basin drain?

A basin drain is a plumbing fixture that links the sewer line to your sink. It plays a crucial role in removing wastewater from your home. However, hair, soap, and other debris can sometimes accumulate and cause blockages, leading to slow draining or complete clogging.

What You Need

To clear a blocked basin drain, you'll need the following tools and products:


A plunger is a straightforward yet powerful instrument for unblocking blocked drains. It has a rubber cup at the end of a handle, which you can use to create suction and dislodge the blockage. The rubber cup fits snugly over the drain opening, allowing you to create a tight seal and generate the necessary suction to clear the blockage without spending too much.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

An easy and safe method to unclog a drain involves mixing baking soda with vinegar. The two react chemically, producing a fizzing action that can help clear the obstruction. Before moving on, flush the drain with one cup of each component. Wait a few minutes for the mixture to sit, and then pour hot water down the drain to clear it. The approach is safe for the environment and is a favourite among those who favour organic solutions.

Drain Snake or Auger

An auger, a drain or plumber's snake, is a flexible and long metal cable. You typically insert it into the drain to physically remove the blockage by breaking up the cause into more manageable pieces. The snake is designed to be inserted into the drain and then turned so you can turn the blockage into smaller pieces. This technique is especially helpful for removing obstructions deep in the drain.

Drain Cleaner

If the above methods don't work, you can use a commercial drain cleaner. These items have chemicals that can dissolve and deconstruct the obstruction. These products are effective, but because of their abrasive nature, you should exercise caution around pipes and skin. Be sure to take all the required safety measures to prevent exposure, and always carefully follow the instructions.

Basin Wrench

A basin wrench is a specialised tool used to remove the drain stopper or pop-up mechanism from the basin. This tool can help access and clear the blockage, particularly if you need to remove the stopper to clear a blockage located further down the drain.

Steps to Clear a Blocked Basin Drain

1. Use your fingers or a pair of tweezers to clear the drain opening of any visible hair or debris. Removing debris can help prevent further blockages and make drain cleaning easier.

2. Try using a plunger to create suction and dislodge the blockage. Once the plunger is firmly over the drain opening, repeatedly plunge up and down. To work properly, ensure an established tight seal between the plunger and the drain.

3. If the plunger doesn't work, try the baking soda and vinegar method. Empty the drain of one cup of baking soda and then one cup of vinegar. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes, then flush the drain with hot water. This method can help break down the blockage and clear the drain.

4. If the blockage persists, use a drain snake or auger to break up and physically remove the clog. After carefully inserting the snake into the drain, pull the handle to extend the cable. When you feel the blockage, turn the handle in the opposite direction to bring the cable back out and remove the obstruction.

5. As a last resort, use a commercial drain cleaner. Follow the product's instructions and ensure a properly ventilated space. When using these products, always wear protective goggles and gloves.

Considerations When Clearing a Blocked Basin Drain

1. Wear gloves and goggles to shield your eyes from chemicals and splashes.

2. If the blockage is deep in the drain or you're unable to clear it, it's best to call a professional plumber to avoid further damage to your plumbing system.

3. Regularly maintaining your basin drain by cleaning out hair and debris can help prevent future blockages.

Frequently Asked Questions About Clearing a Blocked Basin Drain

What do plumbers use to unblock drains?

Plumbers often use a combination of tools, including plungers, drain snakes, and specialized drain-cleaning chemicals to clear blocked drains.

What is the best tool to unclog a sink drain?

A drain snake or auger is considered the most effective tool for unclogging a sink drain because it physically breaks up and removes the obstruction.

What is the best way to clear a slow-draining sink?

Baking soda and vinegar make a fantastic all-natural way to unclog a slow-draining sink. The chemical reaction has the potential to dissolve the obstruction.

How do you unblock a sink drain naturally?

Two other options for removing hair and debris from drains are adding boiling water or a drain cleaning tool.

How do you unclog the most challenging drain?

If the blockage is stubborn, you might need to remove it with a high-quality drain snake or auger physically. If that doesn't work, you must use a commercial drain cleaner.

How do I clear a blocked basin drain when nothing works?

Don't Let a Blocked Basin Drain Ruin Your Day - Call All Needs Plumbing Today!At All Needs Plumbing, we understand the frustration of a blocked basin drain type. We offer a $0 callout fee, 24/7 same-day service, a 15% seniors discount, and $150 off hot water systems. Our skilled plumbers are equipped with the technologies to quickly and effectively clear your blocked drain so you can return to your day. Don't wait - call us now at 1800-123-456 or visit allneedsplumbing.com.au to schedule your appointment.

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