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Why Does the Bathroom Sink Gurgle? And How to Fix It?

Do you hear a gurgling sound while using your bathroom sink? Well, it might also happen when you shower and flush the toilet.

So, you might be eager to know the reason behind the glug-glug sound in your bathroom sink and the ways to prevent it. Let’s find the solutions to all your queries one by one.

Why does the bathroom sink gurgle?

The bathroom sink makes a gurgling noise if the venting system is clogged. When a clog develops in your pipes, a pocket of air can form around it, causing trapped air to rise when water drains down the sink. As a result of this air displacement, the bathroom sink starts gurgling.

Why does my bathroom sink drain gurgle?

There are numerous reasons for your bathroom sink drain to make a gurgling sound. This occurs when any part of the drainage system is wholly or partially blocked.

Let’s take a look at all those reasons for which your bathroom sink drain might gurgle. 

Blocked plumbing vent:

The plumbing vent is meant to let air flow through drains without affecting the water flow. It is typically situated in the roofs, and the vent can get blocked over time for various reasons.

The plumbing system won’t function properly if the plumbing vent is obstructed. Since the bathroom sink gurgles, if the water doesn’t pass properly and air enters the pipe, blockage of the plumbing vent will produce a gurgling sound. 

Clogged drains:

One of the most common reasons for the bathroom sinks to produce gurgling sounds is clogged or blocked drains. If the drains are blocked, an air pocket will form there.

So, when the water flows through the drain, air from the sewage will come up through the pipe, creating a gurgling sound.

Even if your plumbing vents are in excellent operating order, a hairball in the bathroom sink drain can plug up your drain line. You’d be astonished at how fast your sinks’ drain can get clogged; thousands of hairs drop into the sink when you wash your face. 

Insufficient vents:

If the number of vents in your bathroom is not adequate, the plumbing system of your bathroom sink won’t function properly. Due to the low number of vents, the trapped air inside the sinks’ pipes won’t leave.

As a result, when water flows through the pipe, gurgling noise will be produced. 

Problem in P-Trap:

The P-Trap protects your home from odors by forming a water seal that prevents sewer gas from rising and exiting your drains. The trap is a piece of curved pipe that contains a tiny amount of water and successfully prevents any gas and air from rising through the sink.

If there is a problem with the P-Trap of the pipe, the seal that seals off the drain from sewage gas will break. As a result, air and gas will forcefully come up when the water flows to the drain, which will cause a gurgling noise.

How to stop the bathroom sink from gurgling?

The gurgling noise coming out from the bathroom sink can be bothersome. It can hamper the aesthetics of the bathroom. However, you can stop the bathroom sink from gurgling with a little effort and time.

Here are the steps that you should follow to stop the bathroom sink from gurgling:

Detect the reason for the gurgle:

To stop the bathroom from creating gurgling sounds, you will have to detect the exact reason for the sound. The best way to determine the cause for the bathroom sink gurgle is to detect the noise source.

If you hear your sink gurgle while using it, the issue may be confined to that sink and the drain pipe that runs from it. In this case, the gurgling noise from that specific sink will stop right after the water is drained.

Then again, if the sound comes from the sink when you drain the tub, then the problem is with the main vent. It is an indication that there’s a serious problem that has to be addressed right away. 

Use a plumbing snake to clear the drain pipe and vent:

Remove the drain plate and use a snake to push the clog through to clear the blockage in your drain line. You can also try inserting the snake into a tiny drain outside of your home and pushing it through the sewage system to the street.

If the blockage on the roof vent seems to be the reason for the gurgling sound, hose them up to clean any accumulated material. With the help of a sewer auger, you can clear the obstruction by starting at the roof vent hole and working your way down to the blockage.

That being said, you will have to clear the vent and drain with patience and caution. Otherwise, it can be a very time-consuming and complicated task. 

Work on the main vent:

If the gurgling sound doesn’t stop even after cleaning the drainpipe, you will have to work on the central vent. If you flush your toilet and hear gurgling sounds in a different sink from a different region, the problem is most likely with the main vent.

Clearing the main vent can be a little more complicated than the other vents and pipes. You should consult a professional if you don’t want to go through the hassle of cleaning it yourself.

What does it mean when your bathroom sink pipes are gurgling?

The most common indication for the gurgling sound in the bathroom sink is that air bubbles are pushing their way up from within the drain. When there is a blockage in the sink pipe, it’s possible for air pockets to form and surround the obstruction.

As a result, as the water goes down the drain, the trapped air escapes up, creating a highly audible gurgling sound.

Aside from the water pipes, there are ventilation pipes that lead to the roof. Gases from the sewer line can escape through the roof vents thanks to these airways.

However, if those vents become blocked, the gasses are driven back down into the water lines and up to the drain, creating gurgling noises.

Why does my bathroom sink gurgle when I shower?

When your bathroom sink gurgles when you shower, it indicates that there is a problem with the main vent or drainage system of the bathroom.

When there is an obstruction in the vent or drain of the bathroom, the water won’t properly flow through the drain, and an air pocket will form on the blockage. This air pocket will make the air and gas rise up through the sinks’ pipe, which will make it gurgle.

Why does my bathroom sink gurgle when the toilet is flushed?

The bathroom sink gurgles when the toilet is flushed, mainly if there is a blockage in the line leading to the sewage tank.

When the pipe connected to the sewage tank gets clogged, an air vacuum is formed there. When the water and waste from the toilet go through the air vacuum, air comes up through the pipe. As a result, a bad odor is released to the bathroom, and the sink gurgles.

Why does my bathroom sink gurgles when the washer drains?

If your bathroom sink makes a gurgling sound when the washer drains, it means that air is being forced back through the tube. The main reason behind this is the incorrect installation of the washing machines’ drainpipe.

The washing machine releases air at high speed and high pressure. If the pipe is not connected to the drainage system correctly, air will escape through the bathroom sink, which will create a gurgling sound.

Why does my bathroom sink gurgles when the heater is on?

The releasing pipe of a heater is usually connected with the bathroom sinks’ drain pipe to vent out the air. If there is water trapped in the heater line, the heater won’t normally blow the air through the pipe.

In that case, the released air from the heater will collide with the trapped water, which will eventually cause a gurgling noise in the bathroom sink.

Is a gurgling sink dangerous?

The gurgling sink is an indication that there is a serious problem in the sewer system. It is not necessarily dangerous. However, the water won’t flow down the drain at its usual speed, and an unpleasant odor will get released into your bathroom.

Can you pour boiling water down the bathroom sink?

You should never pour boiling water into your bathroom sink. The pipe of the bathroom sink is made of PVC, and it can’t withstand high temperatures. So, if you pour boiling water into the sink, the PVC pipe will melt, and seals will get damaged.

What is safe to put down the gurgling bathroom sink?

The pipe of the bathroom sink is quite sensitive because of its material. Here are few things that are safe to put down the gurgling bathroom sink:

  • Plunger
  • Sewer auger
  • Plumbing snake
  • Chemical solutions

Are shower and sink drains connected?

The shower and sink drains are generally not connected to avoid complications in the drainage system. However, if the distance between the shower and sink is within 5 feet, their drains can be connected.

Final Thoughts:

The bathroom sink will gurgle if there is any issue with the airflow in the drain pipe. Due to blockage in the drainage system, an air pocket will form. Air will go up through the pipe, creating a gurgling sound. However, you can prevent gurgling in the sink effortlessly with a few simple steps.