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Category Archives: Blocked Drains

Categories Blocked Drains

Common Causes of Toilet or Sewer Blockages

Common Causes of Toilet or Sewer Blockages

First, let’s begin with the human factors.

  1. Wet Wipes or flush-able wipes.
    Recently a major company in Australia was ordered to pay over $700,000 for making false or misleading representation about their bathroom cleaning products. It was proven that these products did not break down like normal toilet paper.

    So as plumbers we ask that that our clients avoid using these materials. It puts a lot of strain on the sewerage treatment system and prevents your pipes from flowing.

  1. Sanitary Pads and Personal Protection Equipment PPE.

    Another major cause is the disposing of baby nappies and sanitary pads through the toilet. What this will do is cause a stoppage point in the sewer drainage system and start backing up waste from flowing through its natural path.

    Toilets are not made to break down these products within the system and should only be used for the purposes for which they were designed.


  1. Other foreign objectives

    If it is not wet wipes or sanitary pads then it might be the odd object jammed in the line or toilet. Kids and some adults are known to flush unwanted goods down the toilet. Kids toys are a major one we pull our or push out with our specialist equipment. But we have also seen other items as well. Let’s be safe and say that as plumbers we ask that you use a rubbish bin and not a toilet to get rid of unwanted things.

  1. Incorrectly installed fixtures or toilets.

    If there is a DIY type of installation and you are coming across blockage after blockage most likely it is due to a fault in installation.
    Best thing is to get a plumber to have a look at it and do it right the first time.

    Now lets talk about factors that have minimal human interference with…

    5. Tree roots

    The most common thing we hear is that there are no trees next to the sewer pipes, a key note to consider is if you have a tree 10 meters away but 20 meters tall be assured that its roots can be around your pipe looking for water.

    This is very common as tress need water to survive and there is a plentiful source coming from your sewerage or storm water.  All it takes is a very small crack or a connection that was not installed correctly and the roots and slowly make their way in. Over time this will start to block your pipe until it completely blocks the line.

    The best thing to do here is to be proactive and plan the best place to grow and plant trees.  Also make sure you use quality products when building or repairing faults so there is no room for error or tree roots to penetrate your drainage.

  1. Collapsed pipe

    This can be from old age pipe, incorrect back fill, bad installation of pipe work or ground movement.

    You really do not know until it is dug up, however its best to get a CCTV camera check to ensure that the pipe is collapsed.  There are too many plumbers out there saying pipes are collapsed when they are not.  So, it is best that you check it and make sure as a pipe replacements pipe can be costly exercise.

  1. Blockage in main shaft of boundary trap connection.

    There can be several reasons for this from roots to old pipe or debris caught in the pipe.  The best way to deal with this is to have it cleared with a Hydro Jetter and then inspect it with a CCTV camera to eliminate any assumptions.

  2. Sewer service provider main line blockage.

    It is common that Sydney water might be dealing with the same issue yet on a larger scale.

    In this case you can have our plumbers come to check your line and then have Sydney water to come out and clean theirs. You can ask for a refund which is subject to their refund schedule.