How to Retrieve a Small Item That Falls Down the Drain How to Retrieve a Small Item That Falls Down the Drain
How to Retrieve a Small Item That Falls Down the Drain
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How to Retrieve a Small Item That Falls Down the Drain

How to Retrieve a Small Item That Falls Down the Drain

If an object has fallen into your drain you have a few options to retrieve it. First things first, turn the water off to prevent your object from flowing into the sewage.

Option 1: Use a Magnet
If your object is magnetic, you can retrieve it without having to take the drain apart. Attach a small magnet to a string and slide it into the drain pipe. If your drain plug does not come out easily you can unscrew it from underneath the sink. Once your magnet is inside the pipe as far as it can go, bring it up slowly so as not to risk knocking the object back off. If your object does not attach at first you may need a stronger magnet.

Option 2: Four-Pronged Tool
If your object is not magnetic, you still may be able to retrieve it without taking the drain apart. Purchase a four-pronged tool at your local hardware store. This tool uses spring-loaded prongs to grab objects. It may be difficult to know whether you have successfully grabbed the fallen object so you may want to grab a flashlight to shine down the drain as well.

Option 3: Take Apart the Drain
While this option isn’t the most ideal, it doesn’t have to be that complicated either. It will likely be messy so be prepared with a bucket and towels. You will need to remove the P-trap - the bendy pipe underneath the sink. Remove the slip nuts on either side of the “J” section of the trap. You may be able to do this by hand, but you also might need pliers or a wrench. Have your bucket handy under the trap to catch the stored water and other debris. Be careful not to lose the o-rings located between the slip nuts and the trap. You may be surprised (and slightly disgusted) at the debris caught inside your trap so you may want to put on gloves before going after your object. Your object might have fallen out into the bucket with the water, but it also might still be caught inside the trap. Use a small brush to clean out the trap and retrieve your object.

Once you have retrieved your item, return all of your piping to the proper paces. Be sure to turn your water back on and test your pipes for leaks. To prevent objects from falling down the drain again in the future you can install a drain guard. Drain guards allow water to pass through quickly while preventing objects and hair from falling in and clogging the pipes.

If you need assistance with retrieving an item in your drain, contact ASAP Plumbing today at 228-865-2727 or visit and request a free estimate! We can handle all your plumbing needs including installation, repair, and full water heater replacement.

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