A common situation in many homes and buildings, that can be avoided, is problems with blocked drains. The reasons drains get blocked is usually the same, and ways to avoid these problems are simple, we just don’t pay that much attention to our household pipes. To assist you we will provide you some very important information and show you what to do before a problem happens, what to do when facing the problem and after the event.
The most important tip you’ll hear about avoiding blocked drains is to prevent the blockage in the first place. That can be done in many different ways, but whether you’re reading this because you want to prevent a blocked drain from happening in your home or if you’re finding ways to unclog a blocked drain, everything’s covered here.
First let’s go over what you can do to prevent a blocked drainage problem in your home or how you can stop it from happening again.
• Check around for open pipes. Make sure that nothing is falling into the open pipes, like leaves or dirt, so they don’t cause blocked drains. Also make sure you cover open pipes during renovations so you avoid debris getting into the pipes. Simply cover them during the renovations period then open them up again after.
• Don’t leave hair at drains or sinks. It may seem like hair can’t block a whole pipe but it happens more often than you imagine! When hair bundles up it becomes a big ball that can also tangle around other debris in it. All that stuff jumbled up together will block your pipes.
• Never flush things that are not meant to be flushed down the toilet. Sanitary napkins, nappies or even baby wipes should go in the trash.
• In the kitchen, always use sink strainers.
• Do not wash food scraps or oily and greasy substances down a drain.
Oil and grease are known culprits when it comes to blocked drains.
• Be careful with keeping things near the toilet that can fall in. If you use a clip on freshener for the toilet, make sure it sticks on properly. Did you know that some Real Estate agents make note in the rental contract that you are not permitted to use a clip on freshener due to the potential blocking hazard?
• Do not let your kids ‘experiment’ flushing things down the toilet.
Now if you’re currently going through a blocked drainage problem, here are some of your options:
• A plunger is the easiest tool you could use. Plungers specially work when the toilet or kitchen sink is blocked. It won’t however do much for a serious blockage problem.
• A cable auger or otherwise known as a plunger snake is a steel cable wound around a hand crank. This works well in curved pipes as the steel cable is flexible.
• High Pressure water jets are another solution. They work well and do not cause any damage to pipes.
• Drain Cleaners also work well, especially in kitchen sinks and should only be used by an adult.
• Electro-Mechanical Cleaning is another method used to unclog blocked drainages. Using a rod which you can fit attachments to can be used in getting rid of roots, twigs, leaves or other objects that have bundled up.
After you’ve dealt with your blocked drainage problem, you go back to prevention. Another way of preventing problems like these from happening is to regularly have your pipes checked. Cleaning maintenance will save you from the trouble of suddenly having to find a plumber because water is flowing in places it shouldn’t. Also keep in mind that a drainage problem when not taken care of immediately can cause health problems as the water is normally waste water.
If you can’t take care of a drainage problem by yourself, then contact a plumber immediately. Keep the number of your neighborhood plumber or building plumber on hand and also find an emergency plumber you can contact if needed.