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  • Writer's pictureSmart Drain UK

Why are my drains blocked?

Updated: Mar 8, 2022

If you’re experiencing a blockage it can often be incredibly frustrating and can sometimes lead to damage throughout your property, particularly if your drains are starting to back up and overflow.

There are a number of reasons why your drains could be blocked but due to the pipes your waste flows through being located underground, it’s often difficult to locate the source of the problem and identify what’s causing the blockages.

We’ve listed some of the most common drain faults to help you identify the issue.

Are you experiencing slow running water when emptying your sink or flushing your toilet?

If water is draining slowly then this can be a sure sign that your drain is starting to form a blockage. A number of things can start to cause it and sometimes you’ll find that a domestic house product such as a drain clearer which can be emptied into your sink can dissolve a small blockage.

This is only effective however if it’s a buildup of food product such as fats and oils that have been emptied into your sink, if the blockage within the drain has been caused by something a little more substantial such as baby wipes that have been flushed down the toilet, then it will fail to clear the blockage.

When you start to notice that your water is draining slowly it’s vital to act quickly to prevent the issue from becoming worse, small fat and oil build ups may be dissolved by using an over the counter drain cleaning product but if left unchecked, these build ups can become solid and almost form a rock like substance which can be extremely difficult to clear.

Our recommendation for slow running water would be to try a drain cleaning product to see if the blockage can be dissolved, if this seems to fix the issue then we would still recommend a CCTV survey which our engineers can offer to ensure the problem has been resolved and any potential build up has been removed from your drainage pipes.

If after trying an over the counter drain dissolve product you find the problem still persists, then it maybe you need your drain rodding to clear any stubborn blockages.

Are your drains completely blocked and overflowing?

If your drains are starting to overflow you can pretty much guarantee there’s a stubborn blockage which needs removing. Once your drains have started to overflow, they’ll need to be cleared quickly before the damage to your property starts to become costly.

By rodding your drains, we can quickly remove stubborn blockages which can be caused by fats and oils building up to form a rock like substance, baby wipes being flushed down the toilet or waste product snagging on rough surfaces within your pipes.

The most common blockages can be cleared by rodding which is when fiber glass rods are connected together to form a long pole which is run through the blocked pipe to push and dislodge the blockage.

Our engineers clear most domestic blockages from drainage systems by rodding but sometimes the problem can be more severe. If your property has large trees surrounding your boundary then you may find the roots have breached your pipes and formed the blockage. By utilizing our mechanical rotary cutting blade we can cut our way through any pipe and remove tree roots that have worked their way through into your drainage system.

Is there surface water or waste product building up in your garden?

If you’re finding a buildup of surface water or waste product in your garden, then you may be experiencing a collapsed drain. There are a number of reasons why your drains may have collapsed but we find it’s much more common in older properties where the pipes have corroded away. Collapsed drains can cause damage to your property and neighboring properties which is why they need repairing quickly.

By utilizing a CCTV survey our engineers can quickly identify the location of the collapsed drain and carry out the necessary repair works. Often pipes can collapse underneath your property which could end up becoming costly if floors need excavating in order to reach the damaged pipes. Fortunately, the engineers at Smart Drain UK can repair collapsed drains by installing a new liner without digging up internal floors and causing further damage.


Whether it’s a small buildup of fats and oils, a stubborn blockage or a collapsed drain, if left unchecked these issues can cause devastating damage to your property and can become incredibly costly.

If you’re attempting to clear the blockage yourself then we always recommend seeking a professional drainage company to visit your property after to conduct a CCTV survey to check the blockage has been displaced and your drains are once again free flowing. Often you may think the blockage has been cleared, only to find out weeks later, it’s actually just dislodged and has formed a new blockage further up the pipe.

Our team of drainage engineers have over 20 years’ experience within the drainage industry and can identify, unblock and repair any issue you’re facing. If you’re currently dealing with a blockage, have issues with standing water or unwanted waste product in your garden or have recently noticed your water seems to be draining off much slower than normal, contact us today and let our drainage engineers take care of all the hard work for you.

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