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Kitchen Sink Maintenance

Did you know that you can maintain the efficiency of your kitchen sink and related plumbing with a few tips?  Staying up on these basic maintenance items can save you big bucks.

9 simple sink maintenance tips

1. Eliminate Build- ups

It may sound counter intuitive, but kitchen sinks should be clean as much as possible.  Yes, it’s a place where all the dirty dishes go.  However, they should be cleaned promptly or put in the dishwasher.  Avoiding unnecessary garbage clogging up the sink is one of the easiest things you can do to keep your kitchen sink’s plumbing in top shape.

If you find your sink a bit more on the dirty side than it should be, use the following tip for kitchen sink maintenance from our plumbing experts to eliminate excess and to reduce harmful microorganisms.  Fill one part of the sink (for a double basin sink) with hot water and mix in a cup of Clorox. Open the drain and let the water pass through. It will clear the sink and help minimize germs within the drains.  Repeat the process on the other half of the sink.

2. Scrubbing the Sink

Unless you scrub your sink, water spots, rust, food stains and soap deposits can build up.  Excessive build up can lead to you having to spend money to have drains unclogged, when it could have otherwise been prevented.  For a quick, easy way to scrub your sink, simply squirt dishwashing liquid in warm water and mix it in a bowl. Dip a cleaning cloth or sponge into the mix and scrub your sink gently. For a more thorough scrub, consider using a nonabrasive cleaner or an all-purpose cleaning spray.

3. Protecting the Sink against Stains and Scratches

Here’s a few tips for the home to minimize expensive repairs in your kitchen sink.

  • Install a plastic (perforated) mat at the bottom of the sink. This protects the sink surface against mars and scratches.
  • Don’t let salad dressing, vinegar, fruit or any other acidic food linger on the sink surface for long. Clean them up immediately to reduce staining and etching.
  • Avoid scouring powders while cleaning the sink. Instead, use a dish detergent formula or warm water.

4. Baking Soda

Baking soda is a wonder.  This inexpensive household item is effective at cleaning solid surfaces.  If you sink is made of a non-porous, solid surface than it should be easy to clean and relatively stain-resistant.  This is the perfect environment for a thorough cleaning with baking soda.  Simply mix water with baking soda into a toothpaste-like consistency and use it to rub out any stains. Use a nonabrasive scrubbing pad to apply the paste and rinse thoroughly.

5. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is often useful for removing stains from surfaces. Add a half cup of powdered borax to juice from a half lemon. Dab a sponge or piece of cloth into the mixture, rub the stains and rinse using running water. This works for the majority of kitchen sink types.

6. Vinegar

Sometimes you will notice white spots on your kitchen sink’s faucet.  These are lime deposits and can come from mineral-rich hard water running out of the taps.  This tough build up can sometimes be quite tricky to clean too.  However, you can easily remove them using vinegar.  Dab a paper towel in some vinegar and wrap it around the spotted areas.  Remove after 10 minutes and buff using a dry paper towel.

This should work perfectly on many fixtures.  However, please note, colored and brass fixtures can be discolored when put in contact with vinegar.

7. Get Rid of Rust

What can’t WD-40 do?  It’s a wonder around the house.  It can even help minimize rust.  Wiping WD- 40 on rust spots with a piece of cloth, then rinsing, can help remove or reduce pesky rust.  If your sink is made of porcelain and some pots or pans have left a rust ring, dabbing some lemon on salt and then scrubbing the rust can often do the trick.

8. Clogged Sinks

While we’re happy to help with major clogs, sometimes you can save some money and resolve a clogged kitchen sink on your own.  These clogs can often be prevented by being proactive.  Start by mixing 1 cup baking soda with a cup of salt.  Add a quarter cup cream of tartar and store in an airtight (and childproof) container.  Every month or so, pour a half cup of this mixture down your kitchen sink drains followed by a jug of boiling water.

9 – When using a garbage disposal, treat it gently.

Many people assume that garbage disposals can take anything you throw at them.  This is not the case.  Garbage disposals should only take tidbits of leftovers.  Whatever you can throwaway in your garbage should go in your garbage.  When disposing of the small scraps into your disposal, you’ll want to turn on water and slowly feed the small scraps.  Large pieces of food should be disposed of in the garbage to avoid clogging or build up over time.

Maintaining a “healthy” sink really comes down to basic cleaning.  Should you have any major problems, give us a call.  We’ll send one of our friendly, professional plumbers to come and help you out.