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The 6 Top Reasons Your Plumbing Is Blocked

Functional plumbing is something a lot of us in Australia take for granted. But the truth is, it can be all too easy to find yourself at the business end of a blocked pipe.

Here is our countdown of the top 6 reasons your plumbing might be blocked, how you can fix the issue, and ways to mitigate your risk going forward.

 

6. Fat Blockage

A lot of people wash the fat from a frying pan down their kitchen sink with nary a second thought. What most don’t realise is that it’s common for the fat to cool and solidify while still in your pipes. As the fat builds up over time, you can find yourself with a severe blockage that’s incredibly hard to budge without the proper equipment.

If you suspect a fat blockage in your pipes it’s best to get a professional plumber involved. They’ll be able to dislodge the fat with the proper tools and get your pipes back in working order.

To avoid the issue of a fat blockage in the first place, refrain from tipping any excess grease and fat from your frying pan down your drain. Instead, tip it into a container and throw it out with your food scraps.

 

5. Toilet Paper Blockage

Unsurprisingly, this blockage occurs in the toilet. Sometimes excess toilet paper can block or clog your toilet drainage.

This is usually a fairly minor blockage. Plunging the toilet is often enough to dislodge the toilet paper and get things running smoothly again.

 

4. Foreign Objects

This problem is particularly common in households with small children. Some kids have a seemingly endless fascination with flushing the toilet and all it takes is one toy dropped into the bowl to cause a blockage.

In fact, any item other than toilet paper can cause issues if flushed down the toilet. Sanitary items like pads and tampons are common culprits. Baby wipes and nappies have also caused many a plumber headaches.

A good rule of thumb: if it’s not toilet paper, don’t try to flush it.

 

3. Concrete or Grout Blockage

If you’ve recently moved into a newly built or renovated house only to get blocked drain after blocked drain, you might have your tilers to thank for it.

Some tilers don’t dispose of leftover grout from their work appropriately, instead they pour it down the drain. The grout or concrete will then settle at the bottom of the pipes and set, leaving the pipe partially blocked and prone to issues.

This one is an issue for the professionals. Plumbers will use either a jet rodder or a robotic cutter to remove the set concrete in the pipe. In severe cases, the pipe will need to be entirely dug up and replaced.

 

2. Tree Roots

Even if you have no large trees in your yard, tree roots might be the cause of your blocked pipes. Roots can travel long distances in search of water, particularly in times of drought or low rainfall.

Even very small breaks or cracks in your pipes can give roots access enough to block up your system. Badly glued joints can also be all tree roots need to take over.

If you suspect tree roots are the cause of your blocked pipes then it’s time to call the professionals. A licensed plumber will have the tools necessary to properly clear the roots from your pipes.

 

1. Bad Installation

Plumbing is a licensed trade for a reason. Pipes laid incorrectly can cause any number of issues that can lead to blockages or even structural damage to your property.

A couple of common issues associated with bad installation include:

Pipe Backfall

This is an issue where the pipes are laid without the requisite minimum fall to keep water flowing fast enough through the pipe. Pipe backfall can cause paper and other sediments to settle to the bottom of the pipe, eventually creating blockages.

Crushed or Collapsed Pipes

Crushed or collapsed pipes commonly occur if the pipes aren’t laid deep enough underground. Failure to surround underground pipes with sufficient sand or gravel is another common cause.

Pipes laid incorrectly can easily break when heavy vehicles such as a car or truck travel over them. Even tiny cracks can invite tree roots to cause blockages, but a partially or fully crushed pipe can spell a major problem.

 

Get Quality Plumbing Services in Brisbane

Blocked plumbing can happen to anyone, but not everyone is qualified to fix the issue. SJK Collective plumbers are certified professionals who’ve been dealing with plumbing issues in Brisbane for years. We’ve got you covered.

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