What’s Blocked the Drain? The Most Common Causes
It’s a fact that a blocked drain is one of the most common reasons that you will encounter as a plumber and also one of least pleasant. Whether it is a blocked kitchen sink, a bath or bathroom sink or, worst of all, the toilet, blocked drains are common but can lead to a huge amount of damage if they aren’t dealt with quickly. So what are the most common causes of blocked drains?
Kitchen – Grease & Fat
Top of the list of causes of blocked drains is one that might not seem like a big problem – grease and fat that has built up in the kitchen drain. Most of us will have cooked some food, turned the tap on a hot pan and washed grease or fat down the sink without thinking about it. While this might not seem like a problem, it can become one because what is liquid when hot soon becomes a solid when cold. This means the grease and fat congeals in the drain, which can cause a build up of other debris and block the drain.
Bath & Sink – Hair
Hair is another seemingly innocuous substance that can cause blocked drains. When we wash our hair in the bath or the sink, loose hairs are inevitably washed down the drain. These thin hairs can then catch on other bits of debris in the drain, becoming entangled in it and suddenly, the drain is blocked. There are some products you can use to stop hairs going down the sink such as small covers so one of these might be a good investment to save having to call a plumber!
Toilet – Foreign Objects
If you have ever dropped something down the toilet such as a mobile phone and flushed before you fished it out, then you know how blocked toilet drains can easily occur. Plumbers will tell you that one of the most common causes are kids toys – they have a fascination with flushing them! But the drains connected with the toilet aren’t designed to handle items like this, which inevitably leads to a blockage with undoubtedly the most unpleasant side effects of all.
Outside – Leaves & Plant Debris
Sometimes the problem comes not from inside the house but from outside. Particularly in autumn, leaves and other plant related debris can fall into guttering drains, where they decay. Those smaller lumps then fall into the drain system and can cause a blockage. Sometimes a plumber can deal with these problems but sometimes an exterior drains specialist may be required if the problem is down the length of the drain towards the main sewer system.
Avoiding blocked drains can save money and a lot of unpleasantness. But if you think you have a blocked drain, getting a plumber to look at it as quickly as possible is always a good idea. Signs such as water being slow to drain away or toilets not emptying properly can indicate a blocked drain that an expert should check to avoid a much bigger and nastier issue.
Author Bio: Declan Small is the Marketing Manager at Plumbmaster, suppliers of plumbing products for both domestic and trade customers.