Common Kitchen Sink Issues and How to Solve Them

by Paul

kitchen sink issues

Let’s face it unless you’re a certified plumber, the chances of knowing what to do when something goes wrong with your kitchen sink are fair to poor.

None of us enjoy messing with our kitchen sinks, especially when it comes to something more challenging like leaky drain baskets or broken garbage disposals.

Kitchen sink plumbing can be intimidating to those not familiar with them. The good news is that kitchen sinks don’t need to be replaced very often, so the solution to the problem might be a simple do-it-yourself fix.

Below is a list of the most common kitchen sink problems, along with some suggestions on best methods to fix them.

Clogged Drain

An unfortunate reality of drains is that they are likely to become clogged at some point during their lifetime. The good news is that you can fix most of these clogs without calling in the professionals. Armed with a little elbow grease and the right tools, you can clear that clogged up kitchen sink in no time.

For a kitchen sink clog, the recommended method is to use a plunger. If you have a double-bowl kitchen sink, stuff a rag in the clear drain, then fill the problem bowl up with water. Now it’s time to start plunging. Use the plunger over the drain a few times, then pull it off.

If the plunging method doesn’t work, it might require the use of a cable auger or call in a licensed plumber.

Leaky Kitchen Faucet

Perhaps one of the most frustrating kitchen sink issues is a leaky kitchen faucet. You’re trying to shut off the water, but it keeps dripping or leaking through the base. Remember to turn off the main water valve before doing any troubleshooting.

The most common leaking problem is water leaking from the faucet’s base. For this type of leak, the answer is typically replacing a damaged O-ring seal. This is especially true if the faucet or sink are older.

We compiled the general plumbing problems in an article as a reference for this.

If all else fails, or you aren’t comfortable attempting the repair yourself, contact a plumbing professional to fix the issue.

Low Water Pressure

Fortunately, low water pressure issues are relatively easy to fix – it is one of the easiest-to-fix kitchen sink issues that can happen. Usually, the cause is just a clogged aerator. The clog is typically the result of the buildup of small mineral deposits like calcium that collect on inner surfaces of aerators.

To fix this, just remove the aerator from the faucet, and place it into a small container filled with vinegar. Let it sit in the vinegar overnight, which will dissolve the calcium deposits, then reinstall the aerator onto your faucet. Your water pressure problem should be resolved!

If replacing the aerator does not fix your issue, you may have clogged drains in other places caused by debris buildup, or you may have a breach or leak in the pipes leading into your home. In these types of situations, immediately reach out to a plumbing professional to investigate and fix the issue.

Broken Garbage Disposal

Another common problem you’ll encounter with kitchen sinks is a broken garbage disposal. A side effect of your garbage disposal not working correctly is your kitchen sink backing up or clogging. The easiest way to fix this issue is to simply find the reset button located on the bottom of your garbage disposal and press it.

If resetting the disposal does not fix your issue, the next best course of action may be to contact a plumbing professional to come out and take a look at it.


We don’t give our kitchen sinks much thought as we go about our daily lives, but when they do not behave the way we expect them to, significant issues can ensue. Running into problems with your kitchen sink can be frustrating and time-consuming, but some can be easy to fix with the right tools and know-how.

However, the danger lies in attempting to fix something without the proper experience or tools. This can cause further damage and drive up the cost to repair what might have been a small problem. If you’re not sure how to handle your kitchen sink issue, the best bet is to reach out to a plumbing professional to help you sort things out.