Troubleshooting Toilet Clog with Gurgling Bathroom Sink
A lot of things can happen in your pipes. That means a lot can go wrong. Some problems are worse than others.
Standard Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning has provided quality plumbing repair to communities in and around Manhattan for a century! So you can imagine that we have seen everything that can go wrong with pipes and home plumbing.
While often we get calls for what homeowners are seeing, sometimes they tell us about the toilet and sink problem they are hearing.
Gurgling. Bubbling. These are not things you want to hear coming from your sink simply because you flushed the toilet.
It sounds wrong to hear a sink gurgle when you’re not using it. And for a good reason. It is not supposed to.
Does a sink that gurgles after a toilet flushes mean you have a big problem? Not necessarily. We will go over the possible things that can cause a gurgling sound from your sink and some troubleshooting steps to get it fixed.
When a Sink Gurgles After a Toilet Flushes
Whenever there is a gurgling sound coming from a sink, there is likely an airflow problem in your pipes. The sound is actually from air passing through the sink P-trap, which is not supposed to happen.
Air flows easily through the lines in a plumbing system working as it should. This airflow helps waste run smoothly out of your home. So a gurgling sound indicates that there is negative air pressure building up in the drain line. There is a negative airflow happening that is pushing back through the drains.
If your pipes are not getting vented properly, the water flow may be affected and even become blocked.
Gurgling Sink is Sign of a Clog
You don’t want to ignore this warning sign of problems in your pipes. It means you likely have a clog in one of a few places.
There could be a clog in your drain line, not far from your toilet. A drain line clog typically happens when someone puts wrong things down a toilet. Most often, with this type of clog, your toilet will be backing up and overflowing. Fortunately, it will likely be easy to fix with just a plunger.
The other likely place for a clog is deeper in the sewer lines. There may be a clog in the main sewer line that connects to your community’s sewer system, or the clog may be in your home’s vent stack. This vent stack is a pipe that releases sewer gas out through your roof.
Troubleshooting Step: Plunge the toilet
Whether or not you have a clogged toilet, the best way to fix the problem is by plunging your toilet.
Close off the drain to nearby sinks. This is important as it helps ensure optimum air pressure happens as you are plunging. You can use duct tape to seal off sink drains.
With a good plunger (read about some top-reviewed plungers), pump it into your toilet a dozen or more times.
Open sinks back up and flush the toilet. If there is no longer a gurgling sound coming from the sink, you may likely have solved your problem! However, if your sink is still bubbling or gurgling, you should try plunging again to push out the clog.
If the plunger does not fix it, you can try tackling the clog with an auger, also known as a plumber’s snake. This tool often is able to remove clogs that plungers can’t.
If these steps don’t fix the problem, the clog is probably too far down to easily reach. A longer motorized tool may be needed. However, if the clog is deeper into the sewer lines, a different tactic will be required.
Your best option is to call for a repair from a professional with drain and sewer experience like the plumbers here at Standard Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. One of our experienced and trained plumbers will be able to diagnose the source of the clog and completely fix it.
Don’t Ignore a Gurgling Sink
A gurgling sink is a sign you have a problem. It may be a relatively minor problem like a clog that can easily be removed, but it should not get ignored.
If you don’t fix the issue now, it could turn into a big problem later, and one that is more expensive to fix. A clog that does not get removed can get worse and cause damage in your home, like cracking pipes or collapsing sewer lines. Waste may start backing up into toilets or bathtubs.
Preventing a Clog
Drains get clogged in many different ways, but fortunately, the problem can be avoided many times.
Remember this important rule: Toilet paper is the only thing to flush down a toilet (other than waste).
You should never flush any other type of paper. That includes paper towels and wet wipes. Do not flush down the wet wipes that claim to be flushable. They can still cause clogs and problems to your plumbing system.
Standard Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning provides professional drain cleaning service to the entire Manhattan area, including Wamego and Junction City. We provide a full range of plumbing services, including service on pipes and sewers. So you can count on our team of experienced plumbers to handle whatever problem is happening in your pipes.