Tru Flow Drainage

Drainage Specialists Lancashire

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What Is The Most Common Cause Of Blocked Drains

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  • Admin
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  • Blocked drains, Drains, Sewage, Blocked pipes, Blockage
  • Posted date:
  • 12-01-2023
What Is The Most Common Cause Of Blocked Drains

What is the most common cause of blocked drains? Are you asking: why are my drains blocked? Find out more about the most common blocked drain causes.

Why are my drains blocked?

Blocked drains can be incredibly unpleasant to deal with. In addition to this, the situation can only become worse if you have to get your drains unblocked over and over again on regular occasions for what might feel like no reason. 

If your drains becoming blocked is a problem that is causing you a large amount of stress, then you might be wondering to yourself why your drains keep becoming blocked and how you can prevent your drains from becoming blocked up in the future. 

Some of the causes for blocked drains can be handled at home simply by changing the ways that you use your drains.

There are a wide variety of different reasons why a drain can become blocked, and some will simply lead to your drains getting blocked over and over again. In order to stop this from happening, it is always a smart idea to take a deep dive into what exactly is causing the blockage in the first place.

Most Common Blocked Drain Causes


Foreign Objects

One of the most reasons for blocked drain problems is caused by foreign objects being flushed directly down the toilet. This can mean anything from baby wipes and cotton pads to pieces of jewellery and sanitary items. 

Of course, you will not be surprised to know that household drains are not built to be able to handle these types of foreign objects, and this inevitably leads to blockages being formed with very unpleasant results. Sewage overflowing all over the home is one of the most common nasty outcomes.

In order to avoid foreign objects being flushed down your toilet, you should prioritise the positioning of a waste basket nearby the toilet so that any sanitary items can just be placed there and thrown away instead of being plunged down the toilet. When it comes to car keys, jewellery, and phones blocking up your pipes, the only solution is to be extra careful.


Leaves and Outdoor Debris

What many people do not realise is that their blocked drains are very often caused by leaves and debris being blown or washed into their drainage system and causing a blockage. 

Unfortunately, this can be a major problem when the weather is stormy, and it will only become worse if a property's gutters are left unkept and surrounded by unmanaged garden landscapes.

Trying to avoid this issue can be quite tricky, but one of the most worthwhile ways you can stop leaves and other outdoor debris from entering your drains is to cover up the drain entrances with what is known as a drain guard. 

If you find that this is a reoccurring problem, then even with prevention methods such as the drain cover in place, your best course of action may be to call a drainage exterior specialist to come and take a look at your drainage system.


Grease and Fat

Without a doubt, grease and fat that people wash down their sinks after cooking is certainly the most common reason why blocked drains are caused. 

This is a very regrettable habit that many people have found themselves doing in their homes, and in many ways, it is actively destroying people's home's pipes and sewage systems. The grease and fat that is poured down the drains will eventually culminate within the pipes and form what is commonly known as fatbergs. These fatbergs will block up the pipes and lead to major backup issues.

In order to stop blockages which are caused by grease and fat from cooking, when you have finished making your food, you should pour the excess grease and fat into a receptacle and then throw that away. This should be done rather than pouring it down the sink. This can help you save massively on plumbing repair work and generally assist in your home's drain pipes lasting for much longer.


Leaves and outdoor debris


Hair and soap


Hair and Soap

Your home's bathroom sinks, showers, and bathtubs take the brunt of various drainage issues, and they can easily become blocked up through the two common culprits, soap suds and hair. 

These two very common daily occurrences will cause more blockages within drains than any other type of debris. Whenever you wash your hair in your shower, take some time in the bath, or wash your hands with soap in your bathroom sink, this debris can slowly build up within your pipes and lead to blocked or slow-running drains.

This common problem can be avoided, and the risk of having slow-running drains can be reduced in your home by placing drain covers over the plug holes. The drain covers will catch any strands of hair that fall and stop them from getting all tangled up within your drain pipes. This will prevent blockages from occurring and assist in helping your drains run successfully for longer.


Tree Root

The outdoor health of your drainage system can have a major impact on the flow and general effectiveness of your drains. Even the tiniest cracks or leaks in your drainage system can be the beginning of tree root ingress, leading to tree roots growing in the direction and eventually finding their way inside your plumbing system. 

Clearly, this is massively destructive to your piping and will not only obstruct water flow but also cause a significant amount of pipe damage.

In order to avoid this issue from occurring, it is vital for you to ensure that your drain pipes are in good health/ The easiest way you can check to see whether your drains are in healthy condition and not cracked or breaking is to hire a professional and have them carry out a full CCTV survey. 

A CCTV drain survey is where a slim and flexible tube with a camera fixed to the end is fed into the drainage system and provides a video feed of the inside of the pipes to the professional outside. This is one of the most effective techniques for analysing the health of a drainage system.


Ground Coffee

Even though instant coffee dissolves completely within your morning cup of coffee, ground coffee is quite the opposite. The coffee grounds are an absolute nightmare to scoop out of a coffee pot and into the bin, so many people will usually just rinse it all down the drain and move on with their morning. 

Over time, coffee grounds can build up within a drain, especially in the sharp corners of piping, and add even more substances to small blockages that are already causing issues. If you regularly use ground coffee instead of instant, then it is recommended that you get all of the coffee grounds into your bin using some kitchen roll or a spoon rather than pouring them down your sink.


Ground coffee


Cotton buds


Luxurious Toilet Paper

A thick four-ply sheet of toilet paper is an absolute luxury. But even though there is a nice design printed on the paper, it still has a major effect on your home's plumbing system. Think of it this way, with double the normal ply of paper, you are essentially putting twice as much paper down your toilet as you would be with your average toilet roll. 

Using multi-ply toilet paper may sound like a fantastic idea at first, but the people using it are unlikely to adjust the amount they are using to accommodate for the fact that the toilet paper is thicker. This means that twice the normal amount of paper is shoved down the toilet, and this only ever leads to blockages becoming formed.


Cotton Buds

This one might sound ridiculous, but it is actually more common than you would originally think. There is nothing about a plastic stick with cotton wool at the end that screams that it should be flushed down the toilet, and yet there are lots of people doing it anyway. 

The same issue often occurs with cotton wool; it is either dropped down the toilet or thrown down the drain. Even though the object may quickly slide out of view, that doesn't mean that it is gone and is more likely to be causing issues for the plumbing. 

Cotton buds and cotton wools can do great damage as they can become stuck in nooks and crannies, get caught in the corners of pipework, and even become tethered to other small pieces of debris to create a huge blockage. In some cases, it might be possible to flush out chunks of cotton wool on their own, but with cotton buds, there is no real solution. A professional will need to get involved in order to remove the obstructions from the piping.

Struggling with a drain blockage in your bathroom or kitchen? Let us help. Tru Flow Drainage is a drainage contractor that has been resolving drainage issues for local homes, businesses, and property developers for more than 25 years.