Common Reasons For Drain Blockages And How To Prevent Them?

If the problem is not treated promptly, clogged drains are a regular plumbing issue that can result in both inconveniences and costly repairs. Once you have a better understanding of the common reasons for drain clogs and how to prevent them, you will be able to save yourself time, money, and frustration. In this article, we’ll delve into some common causes of drain blockages and find ways to unblock drain clogs.

Hair Buildup

One of the primary culprits behind blocked drains is hair buildup. In showers, baths, and bathroom sinks, hair can easily go down the drain and become tangled, leading to blockages. To prevent this, consider installing drain screens or strainers to catch hair before it enters the plumbing system. Regularly clean these screens to maintain their effectiveness.

Soap Scum

Over time, soap scum can build up, and when it combines with debris and hair, it can create tough obstructions. A water softener can be installed to reduce the amount of minerals in your water supply, which can help avoid the accumulation of soap scum. To remove soap scum from your drains, you should use a mixture of vinegar and baking soda to clean them regularly.

Food Waste

As a result of food waste, grease, and cooking oil, kitchen sinks are extremely prone to being clogged. To prevent large food particles from falling down the drain, it is recommended to make use of a washbasin strainer. Cooking oil should be disposed of appropriately by either recycling it or storing it in a container that is sealed away for disposal in your household rubbish.


If cooking grease is dumped down the drain, it has the potential to harden and adhere to the pipes, resulting in obstructions. To avoid throwing grease away in the sink, you should first allow it to cool and harden in a container before throwing it away in the garbage. Taking this one easy measure can prevent you from having to pay for expensive plumbing repairs.

Foreign Objects

It is not uncommon for foreign objects like toys, jewellery, or sanitary goods to make their way into drains unintentionally, resulting in the formation of blockages. To avoid this, it is important to keep a close eye on young children and make sure they do not play near drains. Additionally, to prevent objects from falling into drains, you should utilise grates or drain covers.

Tree Roots

There is a possibility that tree roots will penetrate pipes in outdoor drains in search of moisture and nutrients. Plant trees and bushes in a location that is not close to drainage systems to avoid tree root obstructions. If you see any indicators of root invasion on your property, such as slow drains or strange noises, you should conduct routine inspections and, if necessary, seek the assistance of a specialist.

Buildup Of Minerals

Mineral deposits can form in pipes in regions that have hard water, which can lessen the flow of water and lead to clogs. Installing a water softener could help reduce the accumulation of minerals in the water. To keep drainage functioning properly, it may also be required to descal the pipes regularly.

Flushable Wipes

Flushable wipes, even though they are labelled as such, can nonetheless lead to drain obstructions. Because they do not decompose as quickly as toilet paper, they have the potential to amass over time. To avoid clogs, flushable wipes should be thrown away in the garbage rather than flushed down the toilet.


Blocked drains can disrupt your daily life and lead to costly repairs if left untreated. By understanding the common causes of drain blockages and following these preventive measures, you can keep your plumbing system in top shape and avoid unnecessary inconveniences. Regular maintenance, responsible disposal of waste, and the use of drain screens are key steps in ensuring that your drains remain clear and functional. In Australian English, we call it “taking a proactive approach” to drain care – a wise choice for any homeowner.