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Blocked drains? Find out what’s blocking your pipes.

Blocked drains can be a real emergency. You don’t need a little issue turning in to a big puddle of problems. Find out what’s blocking your pipes and get things running smoothly again.

Signs of blocked drains

Blockages build up over time in your pipes and drains. The simple signs:

  • toilet not emptying
  • shower or bath plughole filling up with water
  • kitchen sink draining slowly

Let’s be honest, while most blocked drains are preventable, they are common.

Causes of a blocked drain

  • Got kids? You’ve most likely rescued a toy out of the toilet
  • Got hair? You’ve most likely pulled a clump from the shower.
  • Got an appetite? You’ve most likely scraped food out of the sink.
  • Got a nose? You’ve most likely found tissue in your washing machine.

For every bit you pull out, a fraction goes down. Over time the build up of human and household items can block your pipes.

The pipes & drains in your home

Don’t wait for the problem to get worse. While it could look alarming to have u-bends pulled out and tools all over the floor, a plumber can get rid of blocked drains fairly easily.  An emergency call out is more expensive (and stressful!) than a planned and quoted job. Give yourself the time to find a local plumber that’s right for the job and right for you. Check out our blog article How to find and hire a local plumber for tips.

So, usually food scraps, oils and hairs don’t get far down the pipe before getting stuck. But not always!

And usually blocked pipes are caused by humans. But not always!


Pipes from your home run from your property to the main sewer and drain in the street. They may be hidden underground but they are not safe from harm. Tree roots grow and earth moves.

Earth movement and tree roots can:

  1. squash the pipes – restricting flow and causing things to get stuck.
  2. break the pipes – causing a crack. Waste needs a smooth round pipe to slide along, not a jagged or sharp edge to catch on.

The pipes & drains in your yard

But how does a plumber inspect the pipes in the ground? Don’t worry, a good plumber won’t leave your lawn looking like a pirate has lost their treasure. Yay for advances in technology and human invention!

Plumbers who specialise in blocked drains will have a few handy tools up their sleeve…..or in their van because these tools are big! Your drain needs a colonoscopy. Yep, you need a video inspection system. It’s the longest fanciest camera torch you’ll ever see. Snaking down pipes, it allows the plumber to find what nasty surprises lurk within. Without pulling your garden apart to do it. Then they may use a high pressure jet to blast away the blockage, or an auger to cut away the roots or debris.


What’s the solution when I have a blocked drain?

So, whether it is unwanted items going down the drains or damage to your pipes under ground, make sure you don’t wait. Fix your problem before it’s an emergency and ask your local plumber:  Do you specialise in blocked drains? What tools and equipment do you use to unblock a pipe? Good luck!






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