All devices such as sinks using water and pipe fittings in a house need a trap in the waste pipe to create a watertight seal to the drains. The trap prevents the waste pipe from smelling and bacteria or insects from getting inside. There are various types of traps.
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The P trap is one of the most common type of traps in sinks. It is a pipe that looks similar to an upside down letter P. This pipe is connected with a screw joint halfway along that can allow it to be easily unscrewed to remove a blockage.
The S trap is also a common sink trap and looks similar to a sideways letter 'S'. It is also attached with a screw joint halfway along. This allows for the pipe to be easily removed without disturbing the other pipes to remove a blockage.
The Bottle Trap
The bottle trap can be removed by unscrewing the pipe from the bottom, similar to a pop bottle. The waste pipe is always fitted horizontally. The trap takes up less space under the waste outlet than the S and P traps, which make it ideal for pedestal sinks, where space is limited and pipes are exposed.
Special traps are made for twin bowl sinks, washing machines and dish washers. These traps have at least one additional inlet to limit the plumbing pipework and connections.
The Elbow Trap
An elbow trap, also called a J-Bend, is a U- or J-shaped pipe in the plumbing under the sink. This pipe provides a natural location for a clog to from, so it can be quickly clean out and does not travel farther down the pipe. These pipes also catch items not meant to go down the sink drain such as a ring or earring.
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