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Replacement For P-Traps & Seals

Water leaks under bathroom sink are a sure sign of drainage problems. The pipes beneath the sink carry its used water into your home's sewer drainage system. The water makes its way to the curved p-trap at the bottom of the drainage system. Some p-traps have seals on them to help keep the connections watertight, but they can disintegrate over time. Replacing the seal on the bathroom sink p-trap can prevent a lot of future damage.

Step 1 — Prep the Area
Make sure the water tap is off and close the valves under the sink. Use gloves to protect your hands from any contaminated or decayed material and wear a face mask. Place a bucket below the drain before pulling out the p-trap to capture the water and any objects that will spill out.

Step 2 — Remove the P-Trap
Use a pair of channel-lock pliers to loosen the nuts at the top and bottom of the p-trap. Be gentle so you don't crack the tail piece coming from the sink, the trap itself, or the drain stub coming from the wall. After loosening the nuts, unscrew them with your hand. Once the nuts are removed, carefully remove the p-trap.

Step 3 — Empty & Clean the P-Trap
Empty out all the contents of the trap. Use a bottle bush to scrub out the inside. This will get rid of all the extra buildup in the drain and will help prevent further blockages. This should be enough to solve the problem of unclogging the drain, but if the trap is broken or worn, you should replace it.

Step 4 — Buy a New Trap
If the trap was leaky or broken, or if it's an old one made of chrome, you want to replace it with PVC plastic. Chrome traps may look classy, but they corrode quickly. If it's an old brass one, you probably don't need to replace it. To ensure you buy the correct size p-trap, take the old one with you to the hardware store.

Step 5 — Install the P-Trap
Now install the p-trap. It should easily fit into place. Wrap the threaded ends with Teflon tape. When the p-trap is placed in its right position, slide the nut over the gasket and screw it down on the sink's tailpiece. Now on the trap's tailpiece, screw the nut and gasket onto the drain stub. Use the wrench or channel-locks to turn the nuts just past hand tight, but not too tight.

Step 6 — Test It
Once everything has been screwed in place, turn on the water supply. Test the p-trap by running water through it. Check for any leaks and make sure the sink is draining properly.

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