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Signs Of A Drain Emergency

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  • 27-07-2022
Signs Of A Drain Emergency

What are the signs of a drain emergency? This article looks at what causes blockages and who is responsible for a blocked drain.

What Causes Blockages?

A wide variation of factors causes blocked drains; however, the main reason tends to be the things we may accidentally pour or flush down our plugs and drains without second thoughts.

Sewers have been skilfully designed to withstand wastewater from our sinks, baths, showers and toilets, alongside human waste and toilet paper can be easily dissolved. It's paramount that all other forms of waste and rubbish be put into your household or outside bins for collection.

Substances such as the following are known for frequently causing blockages:

Wet wipes. Be wary of the ones labelled 'flushable,' We recommend that you ignore these labels and continue to place wipes in the bin so they do not clog your pipes.

Sanitary items, for example, tampons, nappy bags and towels.

Many pour their food scraps and any remaining fats and oils down their drains after cooking and eating; however, these liquids can become solid inside your pipes, and if you do so frequently, they can block the pipes. 

When maintaining your drains and plumbing system, there are many tell-tale signs to look out for that will help prevent an early on-set emergency situation from occurring or becoming more severe and leading to leakages or water damage in your household or local area.

You can tackle these scenarios yourself with DIY unblocking methods in some circumstances, like removing the drain cover and using drain snakes or plungers, etc. If you struggle or need emergency attention, we recommend calling a local plumber or drain engineer professional to solve the issues as quickly as possible. 

Who Carries Out A Drain Survey?

Suppose you discover your household pipes have pipes, we highly recommend that you immediately turn off your boiler and the water supply at your stop tap. Once this is done, you must open each of the taps inside your house and let them thoroughly drain the entire water system.

If your pipes are already bursting, you want to ensure that no further water can flood your home; however, if you find your pipes have burst close to an electrical system or appliance, you must switch off all mains as quickly as possible to avoid electrical accidents or fires.

Regardless of how big or small your leak is, call the local plumbers in your area. The moment you spot a puddle of water, contact professional help, and they will aim to arrive at your home with haste. 

One of the most common first signs of poor drains is slow-flowing water; however, this is typically an issue for many people as they assume it will clear away. Yet, slow-flowing water is not something that fixes itself and is usually an indication of further significant damage to your drainage system or pipework like a blockage.

For those with broken pipes or blockages that cause slow-flowing, you mustn't neglect them and leave them utterly untreated as you may cause a burst pipe or a flood that could ruin your home's interior. 

For your drainage system to function at a standard rate, the water pressure is essential to focus on. The water pressure will help ensure your drains are effectively flushing wastewater.

For those who experience minimal pressure or slow-flowing water coming from their taps, there could be a burst water main supply in your area, primarily if road works or drainage works are being carried out in your location.

Your drain's low pressure could mean you have a broken drain pipe, leading to numerous issues such as drain overflows, collapses, or drains that break completely. Low water pressure is a detrimental sign of a far more severe problem, so contact local plumbers or a plumbing company in your area immediately if you think this may be the problem. 

Once summer is over, the colder autumn and winter seasons gradually creep up on us, making the days shorter and the weather harsher. Winter comes with a whole host of issues for your drainage system, and it can be dangerous when your drain pipes begin to freeze over, resulting in stagnant water.

When you have frozen pipes, it can be challenging for water to flow through them frequently or even successfully. Once frozen, it becomes easier for them to burst, so contact a professional plumber or local contractors in Ipswich or your area as soon as you spot such problems. We recommend turning off your water supply at the stop tap for extra safety whilst waiting for a specialist team to arrive. 

While this may appear undeniable, flooded drains are an immediate sign of a drainage emergency. The most common cause of drain flooding is seen in broken pipes and blocked drains, and they can have an undeniable effect on your home interior, living situation and overall hygiene.

Drain flooding is a widespread and dangerous issue that many local plumbing and heating professionals must fix frequently. Many professional drainage experts will ensure they will do their utmost to remove the blockage with as minor water damage to your property as possible. 

One of the most unmistakable warning signs of a drain emergency is when your drain begins emitting bad smells. Such is a dead giveaway that decomposing solids and buildup of wastewater are stagnant in your drain, causing immense blockages.

You can discover foul scents coming from shower drains, toilets, bathtubs, kitchen sinks and even from the outside of your home or property. Contact your local professional plumbers in the area to scope out the scene and provide a free quote.

We recommend you look out for one of the most obvious signs if you begin hearing unusual or unnerving sounds about your home coming from your drains, especially after using your kitchen or bathroom appliances.

Hearing loud gurgling noises or groaning sounds from your drains, the plug holes, or the toilet can signify trapped air within the pipes due to clogging.

Build up of dirt, scum and debris, for example, buildups of oil, food scraps, grease and the wrong kinds of soap, can cause clogging. As drains attempt to retain their regular running water, it begins pushing it forcefully around the blockages, which cause odd noises to erupt. 

Lastly, if you find that your drains are getting slower, to the point where you can see from the outside that they are struggling to work efficiently, this is a huge sign.

You may discover that your lawn has begun flourishing, and plants are growing all around the sewer lines. Such is a sign of a blocked drain that has commonly caused leakages or flooding, and its water is assisting the shrubs. These two signs indicate significant damage that hinders your drains from functioning effectively.

If you uncover such problems occurring outside the home, you must dial a local professional to evaluate the situation and take the necessary action to prevent blockages. 

How Do I Know if the Blockage is in my Home?

You must find the best method to unblock it yourself, for those who have uncovered blockages inside your home unless you specifically call for a professional.

These are some signs and visual symptoms you may look out for when deciphering if your drains have a blockage:

  • We recommend asking your neighbours if they are also experiencing issues with their drains.
  • If you have a drainage system that only you and your household solely use, you are likely the only one experiencing problems.
  • If you don't notice any flooding or minimal water pressure in other areas of your local vicinity, it could be a sign your drains are the problem. Therefore you must call a professional for the best solution and great advice on keeping yourselves and your appliances safe.
  • There could be an internal blockage in your household or property if you notice your facilities have been impacted with a slow flow, but not the downstairs ones.
  • Go outside of your property and examine the manhole where the drain is located; if you lift the cover and discover a clear drain, the blockage will be within the home. 

Who is Responsible For a Blocked Drain?

Plumbers and engineers are known for cleaning and repairing all property and household pipework carrying the wastewater from your home to the streets and straight into the local treatment works.

However, it is the responsibility of the property owner to look after the household pipes and those connecting to the communal sewers. Blockages become an owner's responsibility when the following occurs:

  • If you know you are the only house or property in the area experiencing drainage or emergency plumbing issues.
  • Those with drainage systems do not share with other people or neighbours.
  • Or if there are no other flooding issues within your location.

It is only when the problem extends outside the bounds of your household that it becomes a shared responsibility between you and your local plumbers and engineers. If you find that the problem exists outside your home and numerous other properties or home's in your area are experiencing the same issues, contact a local professional. 

There are a whole host of ways to rid a blockage yourself, for example, using white vinegar, hot water and baking soda, or various products such as drain snakes and plungers. If you are unsure how best to do so yourself, continue researching or give your local plumbers a call, and they'll provide top-tier advice on how to achieve happy drains. 

Are you looking for blocked drains clearance in the Ipswich and Suffolk area? Find out more about our local drain jetting services below.