FAQ

What is a collapsed drain?

What is a collapsed drain?

When something goes wrong with your drains it can be a huge inconvenience and a big source of stress. But we forget that we often take our drainage systems for granted. We turn on the taps and expect clean water to be there without thinking about the care that our drains need in order to work properly. Even the smallest of problems can escalate into much bigger issues such as cracks in the pipes or even a collapsed drain. When your drains collapse this can create chaos as it leads on to many issues that will need resolving, so it is important to know what causes a collapsed drain in order to properly prevent it from happening.

Drains that are particularly old are more susceptible to collapsing. After years of wear and tear drains can become worn down. This makes them more vulnerable to breakage such as cracks and decay.

If the condition of the drains is not kept up to a high standard then it becomes increasingly difficult for the drainpipes to handle the pressure inside the drain as well as having to hold all the weight of the earth around them. If there are pre-existing faults with your drains and they are ignored, they will only worsen over time, and when it gets too much for the drain, the drain will simply collapse under the weight. The most important thing you can do is to act straight away and nip any potential risks for problems in the bud before they can end up costing you more money.

The best way to do this is to call out a drain engineer to conduct a CCTV drain survey on your property. CCTV surveys are the ideal way to find out the current condition of your drains. Using the latest technology and software, drain engineers can find out not only how old your drains are but they can identify and locate any underlying problems that you wouldn’t have otherwise noticed.

collapsed drain and tree root damageTree root invasion is another reason behind drain collapse. Even if your drains are nowhere near any trees, they are still vulnerable to tree root invasion. Tree roots get smaller and smaller the further away they are from the tree, meaning they can make their way into even the smallest cracks in a pipe. So even if your drains are not so old, they may still be an easy target for small tree roots to make their way in. Drains are the perfect habitat for tree roots – they provide the roots with all the water and nutrients that they need to grow. As these roots grow, so does the crack that they entered through.

If left for long enough, this creates more pressure on the drain and eventually the drain will collapse. A CCTV drain survey is the perfect way of finding any roots that might have made their way into the pipes and could cause you any trouble. It is also a good idea to consider using chemicals that will kill roots. However, you need to be careful with these chemicals as some will not only kill the roots but the plants too, so it is a good idea to use these only on the inside of the drains where the chemical’s effects will be isolated solely to the root inside the drain.

Whatever the problem, it is important that you act quickly as soon as you notice something’s wrong. Even if you are uncertain, a professional drain engineer will always be happy to help you with some advice on how best to proceed depending on your case.

Following a CCTV drain survey the drain engineer will provide you with a fully comprehensible and useful report of the findings as well as some friendly help and guidance, and they will be more than happy to address any concerns or queries you might have.

Where does my waste go?

Where does my waste go?

It is very easy to take for granted our sewerage systems. We forget that there is an intricate system of drains and pipes that take away our waste so that we don’t have to deal with it. However, if something goes wrong with the drains on our properties, it is a harsh reminder that we must take care of these pipes so they don’t fail and cause any significant damage.

Waste that we flush away is taken from our properties to the public sewer systems via our own personal drainage systems. The further along the system you go, the more drains there are joining together and so the size of the sewer increases. Here collapsed drains are a severe issue if they occur. Wastewater is often passed through a pumping station if there is a large amount of waste, as normal sewers can sometimes become overwhelmed with the amount of waste being passed through them.

Beyond the sewage systems, waste is sent to settlement tanks. The water is left motionless in the tank, allowing the solid waste to fall to the bottom of the tank where it can be scraped away. Anything that is taken away by scrapers is used for a variety of things, including fertilisers, compost, and can even be used to generate energy.

The water is still not completely clean after this process, so the next step is for it to be sent to an aeration tank where oxygen is pumped into the water to encourage any ‘friendly’ bacteria to grow and multiply, as this bacteria will then eliminate the harmful microorganisms that still reside in the wastewater. Following the aeration tanks, the water is sent to another settlement tank to allow the dead microorganisms to fall to the bottom of the tank and be removed by the scrapers.

Where does my waste goThe final stage is to pass the water through sand, as this will remove any final waste that has not been caught in the previous processes. The water is then released into a nearby body of water, such as a river, lake, or ocean. Through this process you can see how the wastewater that we flush away becomes part of the natural cycle, and this emphasises our role in taking care of the sewage systems.

If something goes wrong with your drains, it is preventing the wastewater from being taken away into the sewers. It is very important to properly maintain your drains and ensure that you are not washing away anything that may disrupt this process.

For example, food waste, nappies, sanitary items and baby wipes are all things that can easily block up a drain. Once the drain is blocked, the waste is stopped from being taken away into the sewage system, and it will be left on your property to cause more damage that can ultimately result in flooding, and so the waste will all be spilt out back into your house. This is an unnecessary issue that can be efficiently prevented by taking the proper precautions.

We highly recommend calling a drain engineer to conduct a CCTV drain survey on your drainage systems, as this will identify any underlying problems in your drains that you wouldn’t have otherwise noticed. Should an issue be located, it will be dealt with then and there so you can rest assured knowing that you’re not going to be faced with an expensive blockage any time soon. CCTV drain surveys are particularly handy if your drains are old and worn out.

Once a drain is worn down, it is far more susceptible to issues like cracks and bursting, and even complete collapse. These problems are far more expensive and can cause a great deal of stress, so to avoid anything like this we recommend acting straight away and getting a survey done on your drains today. This can be arranged easily, by calling our Blocked Drain Bournemouth team.

What are the signs of a blocked drain? 2/2

What are the signs of a blocked drain?

Post 2/2

Prevent toilet from unpleasant blocksA blocked toilet is often one of the easiest to identify, as you may begin to notice the water rising each time you use the flush mechanism, and on some occasions there may be an overflow of the water. If the blockage is coming from the sewage system, the toilet will overflow with dirty sewage water which is a serious health hazard due to all the bacteria within the water that could contaminate your bathroom.

Sounds coming from the drains is also often an indicator of a blockage. Gurgling sounds from the drains, pipes, plug holes, or toilet flushes imply a blocked pipe somewhere, as the sound is made from the trapped air that is caused by the disturbance of a blockage being pushed through the systems.

Another important point in determining whether you have a blockage is if neighbours in the surrounding area are experiencing similar issues. If your neighbours are being faced with the same problem, there may be an issue somewhere in the public sewer system, in which case your local council would need to be contacted.

A problem with the sewage system is also more likely if you are experiencing difficulty with more than one fixture in your property, as opposed to just one appliance. However, if you are the only house experiencing the problem then it is likely that you have a blockage somewhere within your property’s drainage system.

These signs are all cause for concern by themselves, but if you are experiencing multiple symptoms then the blockage may be much more severe than you realised, which is why it is important to call Blocked Drain Bournemouth as soon as you notice the warning signs, to avoid it escalating into a much bigger and more damaging problem that will cost you more time and money.

What are the signs of a blocked drain? 1/2

What are the signs of a blocked drain?

Post 1/2

Keep your drains from clog don't put everything down itA blocked drain can be a huge inconvenience, and if it is left for long enough it can become increasingly hard to ignore. It is important to know what to look for when you think you may have a blockage, and as soon as you notice anything that concerns you it is very important to call a drain technician to come and take care of the problem. If left for long enough, blockages can increase in size and cause a great deal of damage to your property, which ultimately ends up costing you more money.

Slow draining water is one of the biggest signs of a blockage, and if the blockage is particularly bad the water may not drain away at all. The resulting overflow of dirty water can pose a serious health risk, so it is important to call straight away and get the problem sorted.

Many blockages are caused by a buildup of substances that have been incorrectly disposed of, especially in kitchen sinks where food and oily substances have been washed down the sink rather than being thrown away in the bin as they should be. In this scenario, you may notice that the water does not drain quickly and there may be a bad smell coming from the drains.

Foul odors are very often the first indicator of a blockage, especially if there is a buildup of waste in the pipes. The waste will begin to rot over the time which can omit a bad smell, so if you are noticing anything that smells bad around the drains it is important to act straight away to prevent the problem from getting worse. We often also forget about the signs of a blockage that are in our external drains and manholes. You can check to see if there is water rising in these areas, which is often a strong indicator that somewhere on the property there is a blocked pipe. If this is the case, then it’s time to act and call Blocked Drain Bournemouth today.