5 Most common culprits for blocked drains

Most common culprits for blocked drains

There are few things more disappointing than when water will not drain properly when you’re washing the dishes or taking a shower. Unfortunately, clogged drains are a pervasive problem in many QLD homes, especially the older beautiful heritage homes. 

You may be able to get away with leaving a blocked drain to self resolve, the problem is that once there is a small blockage, the build up will continue over time as the substances whether hair or oil or grease has something to adhere to, making the block worse and often leading to more extensive damage.

If left unchecked, a seemingly small blockage that takes only a few seconds to clear can turn into something much more severe, resulting in flooding, bacterial buildup, and water damage. A clogged drain is not only an expensive nuisance, but they also pose a health hazard due to bacterial build up and moisture spreading which can lead to mould growth. Because of this, it is critical to take steps to prevent clogged drains.

You may not require an emergency plumber to unblock your drains, it may be a case of clearing it yourself, there are procedures that may be used to unclog most blocked drains. However, there are some blocked drains that no one but a professional can fix. Plumbers who know how to unclog drains are better equipped to handle the job than DIY methods, such as plunging, dismantling, cleaning out the u-bend, and clearing out the pipe. 

The best advice a plumber can give you in regard to blocked drains is to prevent them from happening in the first place. There are very simple ways to reduce the chance of your pipes getting blocked, and very simple measures you can implement like a strainer by the sink to save a lot of money and headaches in the future.

In this article, we’ll talk about the leading causes of clogging and how to avoid them.

Hair including beard trimmings

Clogged drains can be caused by a variety of things, including hair. It takes up to two years for hair to break down, even though it’s biodegradable. So while the hair may appear tiny at first glance, it will accumulate and eventually cause an unpleasant drain clog. It is not only the long haired individuals who are to blame.

After shaving, make sure you don’t flush the hair down the drain because beard trimmings can also clog drains just like long hair. Precautions and regular practice of decreasing can help you avoid clogs. Hair clogging your drain may be avoided by simply changing your plumbing. For example, Installing a device that captures hair, like a drain net cover before, is another option.

Soaps, fats, and oils

Drains and pipes can become clogged with grease, fats, and soaps. This is because water can’t break down grease and oil. The kitchen is the primary source of grease and oil. 

While grease doesn’t block the system right away, it does over time until it is too late. Hard-to-reach blockage forms when oil accumulates for a long time. No liquid can pass through the pipe because it is filled with thick and fatty oil residue.

In addition, people are more likely to have clogs of oil when it’s cold outside. Thickened oil and grease closes the drainage pipes quickly in cold weather. Avoid putting fat and oil down the drain at all costs. Installing grease traps in the lines can also help stop fat from getting into the sewer system.

Wipes (even the ones that claim ‘flushable’!)

When you use too much toilet paper or wipes, your drains might become clogged. Wet wipes are small, pre-moistened pieces of paper or cloth, often individually wrapped. 

Wipes and tissue can prevent the flushing of your toilets. However, if water continues to fail to flow down your toilet after flushing, you can use a plunger to shift and dissolve some of the toilet paper. 

However, if your toilet only fills up and does not drain, you will need to get a plumber who can remove and clear the obstruction.

Hygiene products

Feminine hygiene products should never be flushed down the toilet or drain. 

Clogged sewers are increasingly being blamed on personal hygiene and sanitary items. Napkins, diapers, and feminine products are the most common things that cause drains to become clogged. 

In addition, many toiletries quickly expand when they’ve been soaked in water, clogging up the pipes. For example, After absorbing fluid, tampons expand by ten times therefore seemingly small, they will further expand and lead to obstructions. The best step to prevent this is to put the toiletries in a separate bin or trash and then throw them away properly.

Tree roots that grow into your pipes, causing blockages and leaks

Tree roots can quickly develop to the point of clogging your pipes and inflicting extensive damage. Cracks in your walls or floors are common entry points for small roots. To get rid of tree roots from pipes, you first need to get a plumber to explore the extent of the damage cause by the roots before conducting any excavation work. Keep an eye on your drains and look for any roots growing in them.

In homes that are elevated on stumps, the pipe work is a lot easier to access and therefore more readily accessible as far as cost to repair. A plumber can easily access and fix the affected section of piping. Compared to homes that are on concrete slabs, the pipe work is a lot harder to access even leading to excavation work and needing to lay down a new slab in some serious cases. Take this into consideration when purchasing a property and getting your building and pest inspection, if plumbing work needs to be done, take this into the negotiation process when buying a property.

Keep things out of your drain, sink, or toilet. Call a plumber immediately if you see any clogs in your pipes and drains. This is very important to prevent long-term damage to your drainage system.