How to Clean a Bathroom Sink Overflow Hole

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how to clean overflow drain in bathroom sink

Have you ever had standing water around your bathroom sink’s overflow hole? If so, chances are it’s clogged. It’s not as difficult to fix as you may think – all you need to do is clean out the overflow hole and you should be good to go!

But if you haven’t done this before or if it has been a while, you may be feeling completely overwhelmed and unsure of where to start.

The good news is, I’m here to help make this process easier for you. In this article, I’ll walk you through step-by-step how to easily clean out your bathroom sink’s overflow hole yourself in no time.

How to Clean a Bathroom Sink Overflow Hole (5 methods)

Clogged drains not only create hurdles in the draining process, but they will also give an ugly look to your otherwise clean bathroom. Here are some of the ways through which you can keep the bathroom drain clean:

1.Bleach Solution

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  • LAUNDRY SCENTED BLEACH: The number one bleach of choice in America, Clorox Scented Bleach with CloroMax technology can be used in standard and high efficiency washing machines and is great for everyday cleaning

Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

One of the easiest methods to clean a bathroom sink overflow is by using a bleach solution. In a container, add equal parts of bleach and water and pour it down the overflow hole. Leave the mixture for 10 minutes and then flush it using clean water.   

2. Baking Soda and Vinegar

Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

There can be multiple reasons for your reluctance to use bleach for cleaning purposes. In fact, if your house has a septic system, using bleach is not advisable. On that basis, it will be even better if you use household products to tackle the dirty overflow hole.

For this purpose, baking soda and vinegar work wonders. Simply pour 1 cup of baking soda into the hole with the help of a funnel and then 1 cup of white vinegar. Let the mixture sit in the hole for around 10 to 15 minutes. Now, flush out the hole with the help of boiling water.

3. Enzyme Eaters

The reason why clogged drains should be dealt with at the earliest is that they are a home for bacteria. This unwanted growth of bacteria often causes a revolting stench in bathrooms.

And even though you might have followed the methods explained above, you still wouldn’t be able to kill the bacteria. For that, you’d have to use enzyme cleaners that eat organic bacteria. This will help you get rid of the unpleasant odor from your bathroom. Enzyme cleaners are easily available in several local shops and are easy to use.

Simply pour down the enzyme mix in the overflow hole and leave it there to sit overnight. With warm water, flush the overflow hole. Make sure that you gave enough time to the cleaner to kill all the bacteria.

4. Zip Tie

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Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If there is any buildup in the overflow hole, you will have to dislodge it before pouring any cleaners down the hole. Zip ties are perfect for pushing out any buildup. However, use a long zip tie to prevent it from falling into the hole. 

Pro Tip: For getting rid of any heavy residue left over, pour some hot water down the drain.

5. Rubber Hose

Another easy method to get rid of the strong buildup in your overflow hole is to use rubber hose. Fill the sink with water, slighter above the overflow hole. Take one end of the hose and put it against the opening of the hole. Now, through the other end, blow puffs of air into the other end. Repeat the process after draining the sink.

What Tools to Keep a Bathroom Sink Overflow Hole Clean?

The above information talks about how to clean a bathroom sink overflow with the help of various tried-and-tested ways. Now, let’s have a look at the tools that you can use to remove the strong buildup of gunk or other gross substances from your bathroom sink overflow hole. Let’s have a look:

Alink Sink Drain Overflow Cleaning Brush, Household Sewer Hair Catcher
  • 17.7” long, 1/2” diameter, clean your sink drain with removing the stopper
  • Flexible but durable, it will follow the curve of the pipes and does the job
  • Lots of spiral bristles for catching just about everything down that drain hole
  • Use easily, just go right down, pull the hair and gunk out with just once swipe
  • Perfect for cleaning your bathroom, tub, wash basin and toilet drain opening

Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

1. Drain and sink overflow cleaning brushes or pipe cleaners are both durable and flexible and can be easily used to loosen the buildup.

2. The next tool that works wonders when it comes to cleaning the buildup is a funnel. To loosen the blockage, insert the funnel into the hole and pour down hot boiling water. This will help flush out the blockage.

Cleaning Overflow Drain FAQs

Q: What causes a bathroom sink to overflow despite having an overflow hole?

If your overflow hole is unable to drain the water, it indicates that you have a problem of clogged drains. This is one of the most common household problems. All you have to do, now, is to thoroughly clean the hole and ensure that it is free of any buildup.

Q: Can I pour bleach down the overflow hole?

Since bleach is a harsh chemical, it is not advisable to use it without diluting it. If you have to use bleach to clean the overflow hole, you should mix it with equal parts of water.

Q: Why is there a foul smell in my bathroom?

If you are not paying attention to regularly cleaning your bathroom sink overflow hole, you might end up having bacterial growth in the hole. This bacteria can cause a foul smell in your bathroom.

Q: Do all bathroom sinks have an overflow?

Most bathroom sinks do have an overflow hole. However, it rests on the buyer to make sure that the sink that they are buying has an overflow hole.

Q: What is the purpose of a bathroom sink overflow hole?

In the case where the drain of your sink is not working effectively, the water will keep accumulating in your sink. If you don’t have an overflow hole, this standing and dirty water will overflow and ruin your entire bathroom. To prevent such accidents, it is preferable to buy a bathroom sink that comes with an overflow hole.

The Final Word

Homeowners are often found scratching their heads while figuring out how to clean a bathroom sink overflow drain. Most have no idea that cleaning the overflow hole is a simple process that can be performed in a jiffy. This comprehensive guide is written to help beginners to have a clear understanding of how to clean a bathroom sink overflow hole.        

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