I've had this problem for years and have learned to live with it, but today I got an idea to ask it here.

My kitchen sink has a problem where the water flows away from it slower than it flows into it. The first idea is, naturally, a clog, but I can swear that there is none. Checked the tubes myself. Also when the stream from the faucet hits the hole directly, it flows away mostly fine. However when it hits the edge of the hole, or doesn't hit at all, after a little while water will start gathering.

When it does, there is also a workaround - place your hand (or the plug) tightly over the hole, and the remove it upwards in a quick motion. In essence, you act like a little plunger and suck a bit of water back from the hole. After doing this once, the flow increases dramatically. A full sink empties in, like 10-20 seconds, with a loud, sucking noise. After it's empty, the water starts gathering again.

A long time a go I made some pictures to show in a local forum, but didn't get any satisfactory answers.

Any ideas?

P.S. It'd be nice if someone could correct my terminology; DIY is not my area of expertise.

  • are there any appliances hooked up to the same drainage as the sink, as a washer or dish washer hook up could cause something very similar.
    – allindal
    May 2, 2011 at 17:26
  • @allindal - No.
    – Vilx-
    May 2, 2011 at 18:19

2 Answers 2


I suspect you are getting an air bubble in the drain. I've seen the same effect in a bathroom sink with the stopper that can be lifted out. When it runs slow, lifting the stopper up results in a quick bubble followed by the water rushing out.

  • Actually I also suspected air bubbles, in particular near the surface of the hole. Anything that can be done about it?
    – Vilx-
    May 2, 2011 at 13:07
  • You could try changing the drain cover to something with larger holes, or perhaps long slits. With the bathroom sink, it just required adjusting the stopper to sit higher.
    – BMitch
    May 2, 2011 at 13:17

Check your roof vent. This might cause the drain to back up.

  • I ruled this out since the way the water was going down the drain made a difference.
    – BMitch
    May 2, 2011 at 16:32
  • Since my flat is on the 4th floor of a 5-story building, and the bath on the other side of the wall (and 50cm down the same pipe) doesn't have this problem... No.
    – Vilx-
    May 2, 2011 at 17:00

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