It’s a common fear, and it can happen to anyone: you’re washing your hands or rinsing the dishes, and the soap on your fingers causes your wedding ring to slip off and disappear down the drain. Before you shriek in horror, you’ll be pleased to know that it is surprisingly easy to retrieve anything you drop down the drain of your sink—provided it hasn’t gone past the P-trap, a common but highly innovative plumbing invention.
Most kitchen and bathroom sinks have a P-trap underneath. A P-trap is, you guessed it, a P-shaped piping fixture that is designed to catch waste that falls down the drain and stop it from causing problems far deeper in your plumbing system. Here’s a step-by-step process to help you fish your ring out of the P-trap and avoid a complete disaster.
- Turn the tap off straight away to ensure the water doesn’t carry the wedding ring past the P-trap and into the great unknown.
- Open the cupboard underneath the sink, grab a bucket and place it underneath the P-shaped pipe you see directly below the drain.
- You’ll see two nuts connecting each section of the pipe near to where it bends. Disconnect these and remove the P-trap. If you need to use pliers or a wrench, wrap the nut so that you don’t damage it during removal.
- Upend the disconnected pipe over the bucket and shake it until (hopefully) your ring falls out. Just a warning: other waste may fall out and it can smell pretty unpleasant!
- While you have the pipe disconnected, use a stiff brush to clean out grime and debris. This helps reduce the risk of future blockages and may help dislodge the ring if it hasn’t already fallen out.
- Re-attach the P-trap and tighten the nuts until the pipe is firmly in place.
- Run the trap for a few seconds and check the P-trap to ensure you have re-attached it properly and there are no leaks present.
If you were unsuccessful in retrieving your ring, chances are it has cleared the P-trap and gone further down into your plumbing system. While this presents a much more complicated scenario, it may not be too late to retrieve your ring. Give Curran Plumbing a call on 1300 135 355 and we will do whatever we can to help!