Blockages can occur for a variety of reasons, however most blockages are preventable.
The main causes of blockages are:
- Disposing of fats and oils, food scraps, coffee grounds, etc,down sinks and drains.
- Toilet deodorants dislodging from toilet bowls and the flushing of anything other than toilet paper down the toilet.
- Tree roots blocking and/or damaging pipework.
- Debris from trees blocking downpipes/stormwater pipes.
What to Do When a Blockage Occurs
If you suspect a blockage, check the boundary riser (it looks like a plastic cap with a concrete surround). This is an access point to your property's drainage system that allows you to inspect for and clear blockages. If the blockage appears to be located at the boundary riser call the local council before calling a licensed plumber. Local councils are responsible for clearing blockages that occur on their side of the line. If the blockage appears to be not associated with the boundary riser, call your local plumber (or real estate agent).
How to Prevent a Recurrence
- Only flush toilet paper down the toilet. Put other items in the garbage.
- Don't put food scraps, oil or cooking fats down the sink. These can solidify when they cool and cause blockages. Instead wipe pans with a paper towel and throw it in a bin.
- Don't plant trees over the sewer pipes as the roots get in and cause blockages.
- Clean gutters regularly to prevent debris entering your stormwater pipes.
- Ensure only licensed plumber carry out any installation or repairs to sewer or stormwater pipework.