a blocked/clogged sink

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GandalfMB

Senior Member
Bulgarian - Yellow Beach
Hello,
How would you differentiate between: "The sink in the kitchen is blocked/clogged again!" I think that when a sink is clogged, there's something impeding the flow of water down/through the pipes (making it much more difficult). When the sink is blocked, water can't flow through the pipes at all. I think that "block" is stronger in this context. Is this correct or that's just my imagination?

Thank you
 
  • AmaryllisBunny

    Senior Member
    English (AmE)
    Clogged is complete blockage or very noticeable blockage. You may say that your sink is completely stopped-up (nothing can flow through the drain).

    I can't say why, but I find, "the sink is blocked" sounds a bit strange.
     
    Last edited:

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Clogged is complete blockage or very noticeable blockage. You may say that your sink is completely stopped-up (nothing can flow through the pipes).
    Which pipes?

    Normally, the supply pipes (carrying water to a sink) have no problems with clogging. It's the drain that becomes clogged.
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    I agree with Amaryllis on all counts: "clogged" and "stopped up" are the two normal ways I would describe that situation, while "blocked" doesn't really seem to work. And it seems perfectly natural to me to say "the sink is clogged" -- of course you're referring to the drain; what else is going to get clogged, the faucet?
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    Perhaps it's a BE difference here, but if calling out a plumber I'd say: "The kitchen sink is blocked."

    To me, "clogged" has more of a colloquial ring to it.
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I'd use "blocked" too. "Blocked" vs "clogged" was discussed in the context of toilets, in a thread in the Spanish forum, and one of the moderators concluded that there was an AE-BE difference.
     

    Wordsmyth

    Senior Member
    Native language: English (BrE)
    Just to reinforce the AE/BE suggestion: I would most naturally say "The sink is blocked".

    If I then took the trap off and found the problem, I might say "Yuck, it's clogged up with soggy spaghetti".

    I would never say "The sink is completely stopped up". 'Stopping up' sounds to me like something you'd do deliberately, such as stuffing something in a hole in a wall (of a mud hut?) ... or sticking a finger in a dyke (no sniggering in the back row: I mean the Dutch kind !).

    Ws
     
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