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What Are The Main Causes Of Blocked Drains

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  • 28-07-2022
What Are The Main Causes Of Blocked Drains

Find out more about the main causes of blocked drains. We look at common reasons why a drain can become blocked.

The Common Causes Of Clogged Drains

While clogs are most commonly found in the toilet, they can grow from any point in the system. A clog can form and lodge anywhere, but inspections can help narrow down the options.

If something becomes entangled in one of the sublines, whatever is happening will most likely be contained to a specific area or piece of the structure.

When Should I Arrange a Drainage Survey?

 Tree Roots

Tree roots are well acknowledged as the leading source of water and sewage main blockages and obstructions. While tree roots are more commonly found in the pipes of older homes, they may infiltrate systems of any age. A gurgling sound, according to some experts, is the first indicator of tree root incursion into a sewage or water line.

Tree roots, like all living things, need moisture and are naturally drawn to the water in waste and sanitary sewage pipes, especially if one has a crack or releases some type of leak. If you reside in a forested region or near a lot of trees, you should be on the alert for tree root invasions. 

Some consumers elect to have a video examination every few years since the cost of the service is far less than the expense of resolving a neglected issue.

 Flushable Wipes

Flushable wipes are bad for the drainage system; some cities and other agencies in charge of wastewater processing and management have begun to oppose the use of flushable wipes.

Thick toilet paper, paper towels, face tissue, light cardboard, and other paper items are not designed to be flushed into the toilet. Water, human waste, and biodegradable toilet paper may all be accepted and processed by home and business plumbing systems.

 Food, Bits & Chunks

Food scraps and pieces should never go down the drain, sink, bathtub, or laundry chute; always put them in the trash. It should not go down the toilet in particular. Since it isn't what they were made to transport, none of these drains tolerates much of it. Any edible that is stringy, stiff, sticky, or pointy will not fit well in a water pipe.

Be aware that some foods are completely incompatible with even the most powerful waste disposal systems. Disposal systems work by shredding waste into minute bits so that they may pass through drainage pipes without clogging; sadly, many of the foods we consume are difficult to shred.

What Are The Main Causes Of Blocked Drains?


Particularly in older homes or residences with possibly deteriorating concrete, clay, or terra cotta pipes, pipe disintegration can occur. The earth might erode, joints can separate, and the pipe can droop as a result.

There is a chance that pipes might move in areas where the winter freezes severely due to the constant pressure and heave of the freeze-thaw cycle. Even with contemporary pipes, which are often composed of super-hardened plastic, the damage is still possible due to seasonal and natural soil fluctuations.

 Feminine Hygiene Products & Baby Diapers

Feminine hygiene items and baby nappies put plumbing systems at risk since they don't biodegrade and include cotton and other fibres that are highly prone to clogging.

Both are not biodegradable and put both public and private systems at peril. Even though sanitary napkins and tampon packaging make claims about being "flushable", they are not, and they can cause your drains to clog up.

 Fat, Oil & Grease

Grease, fat, and oil are detrimental to plumbing and all of its accessories. The campaign to inform people about the advantages of preventing greasy substances from flowing down the drain, where they can accumulate and produce blockages, is another one that is receiving more media attention.

People in many private settings might benefit from the same information, but employees in commercial establishments must receive specific training on what belongs in the drain and public system and what does not.We'd like to think that most people are sensible enough to avoid flushing a pan of bacon grease down the drain or the waste disposal, but certain other things that include fat, oil, or grease could slip our minds.

Examples of ingredients include trimmings from a steak or other types of meat, butter, vegetable oil, chocolate, milk, and others.While it's simple to believe that water just washes everything away, fats are sticky, binding materials that are prone to accumulating and eventually clogging.

Fat, oil, and grease should be disposed of in the bin; many other fats and oils, like bacon grease, can be left to cool and will harden or coagulate. Another suggested method is to transfer the grease or oil into a disposable container before discarding it.

causes of blocked drains

 Pipe Scale

The mineral residue that water leaves behind, known as pipe scale, can interact with your pipes and can eventually pile up to the point where it causes a clog or obstruction. Scale buildup is often caused by dissolved calcium, magnesium, and occasionally other metallic elements that are left behind by flowing water.

These particles respond to both changes in temperature and the ongoing wet-dry situations. The scale begins to gather in one area, where it draws additional scale until it reaches an obstructive size. Mineral buildup can impact other water-using appliances like dishwashers and washing machines in addition to the pipes.

 Foreign Objects

Foreign things flushed down the toilet are one of the leading causes of clogged drains. This might include everything from cotton pads, and baby wipes to sanitary products and even the occasional child's toy. Sadly, your drains aren't designed to manage these alien materials, which often causes obstructions with highly unappealing outcomes - overflowing sewage being one of the most typical - and leads to jams.

Make sure to prioritise placing a trash basket close to the toilet so that any hygiene items, cotton balls, or face wipes may be put in it and thrown away rather than being flushed down the toilet. This will help prevent the flushing of foreign things. You'll only need to take additional precautions with your phone and children's toys.

 Leaves & Other Outdoor Debris

What many people do not realise is that leaves and other outdoor debris frequently wash or get washed into drains and obstructions as a result. Unfortunately, this issue is more frequent in rainy weather and can be made worse by messy gutters and unkempt garden settings.

It might be challenging to avoid this specific issue, but blocking the drain openings with a drain guard is one of the best methods to stop leaves and other outside debris from going down your drains. It is essential to get a drainage external professional to visit and give you advice on the best course of action if the issue persists despite the preventative measures.

 Hair & Soap Suds

The weight of several drainage problems falls on your bathroom sinks, bathtubs, and showers, which are quickly obstructed by two typical offenders: hair and soap suds. More obstructions are brought on by these two typical daily events than by most other materials.

Every time you bathe, wash your hands with soap in the sink or wash your hair in the shower, debris can build up in your pipes and result in clogged or slow draining drains. Drain covers should be placed over the plug holes in your bathroom sink to prevent this common issue and lessen the possibility of slow-running drains. These will capture any hair that falls and keep it from becoming twisted in your drain pipes and extend the lifespan of your drains.

Hair & Soap Suds blockages in drains

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