Don’t Get Too Flushed This Summer!

A selection of different wet wipes

The summer is a particularly bad time to get a blocked drain, as in the heat the bacteria and odours can grow rapidly. If you are experiencing any slow drainage or smells building up, you’d be wise to act promptly. One of the key places to get blocked around the home can be the toilet and there are many debates about what you should and shouldn’t flush.

Prevention

Whilst the Drain Guys can rapidly come and fix any issues you encounter, its definitely better not to get blocked pipes in the first place. Here’s our guide to the top causes of toilet blockages and things you should consider as you flush.

The Wet Wipe Issue

A modern solution – disposable, convenient, hygienic; you can now get wet wipes for everything from cleaning your face to your kitchen surfaces. But wet wipes and the flush issue have become controversial, particularly the moist toilet wipes many of which are labelled as ‘flushable’.

At the end of last year, the BBC carried out some research and found that all wipes sold as ‘flushable’ had currently failed the disintegration tests of the water industry. Some sources cited by the BBC state that 93% of blockages in UK sewers are caused by wet wipes; so they can certainly cause problems in homes and offices too. The government and manufacturers are yet to agree a flushable standard, so until you can be sure, its better to bin them

All bathroom products and toiletries are for the bin.

Indeed only basic toilet paper should be flushed. And you might want to teach your kids to consider how much they put down the loo. Certainly cotton wool, cotton buds and other hygiene products should be binned, as these swell up and enlarge in water and won’t disintegrate. Dental floss seems so small, but if you keep flushing it, it can wrap around things and create a net-like effect.

You should remember that it is often about build up. Your toilet may not instantly block with one item but bits collect and stick together. Think of the London fatberg – 250 metres long!

The 3 Ps

So we go along with the advice to only flush the 3 Ps. One of these is toilet paper, We’ll leave you to work out the other 2! Should anyone in your family fail to heed this advice and cause you a blockage, then give us a call and we’ll flush your problems away.

Why CCTV is not just for watching people!

CCTV drain image of football

CCTV is what you use to make sure people are not up to mischief, or to warn off burglars right? Well it may be well be used for these reasons, but it is an incredibly useful tool in lots of other areas too, including drain surveys and maintenance.

Why use CCTV in your drains?

We use CCTV across commercial and domestic properties. It can be very insightful if you are buying a new property and want to be fully informed on the state of the drain system before you are hit with unexpected problems or expense.

Or it may be that your home or business has experienced a reoccurring problem or

a blockage that is not straightforward and couldn’t be easily identified. It pays to have the right equipment for a thorough investigation and CCTV allows for a full survey and a comprehensive view of the situation.

How does a CCTV drain survey work?

It involves a small camera on flexible cable which can get into very small drains. This allows engineers to see high-quality live images making it much easier to identify problems that might otherwise be hidden away and only guessed at, or temporarily solved only to come back soon after.  You can see structural faults – such as fractures or different levels of collapse, pests, or more usual and awkward issues; in fact they can pretty much reveal anything.

What are the advantages?

CCTV drain surveys offer many advantages through their fast, accurate and reliable assessments. The cameras can reduce the need to dig up or manually enter the drains and so minimise disruption for everyone. They can make drains easier to maintain so problems don’t build up. Generally they provide an incredibly effective solution.

The Drain Guys have been working with CCTV technology for a number of years and are well experienced in using it to expose a wide range of issues. If you have an issue or think your property could benefit from a detailed survey then get in contact.

New, and Very Useful, Equipment!

New, and Very Useful, Equipment! 1

While you might assume that unblocking drains was something you use the same equipment for each time that truth is each drain is different. In fact, each situation is different, sometimes we need to use CCTV to find out what the problem is, sometimes we use rods and other times we use a jet system. There are so many variables and the technology behind drain unblocking is always moving forward to give us more tools for more jobs.

Investment

We take investment in our equipment very seriously, after all, you wouldn’t want us to arrive at your home to unblock a drain with equipment from the 90s that is far more likely to go wrong or even damage your drains. There is certainly a cost to getting new “kit” but we feel it is well worth it and it makes our service better which is what we are all about!

Picote Super Midi

This month we have a new toy and it’s called the Picote Super Midi. This machine is designed to deliver fast and efficient drain cleaning. It is able to tackle soft blockages, scale problems and calcium build-up and more. What we think it really good is that the Super Midi can even tackle tree roots and concrete deposits. Tree roots can be a very serious problem when it comes to drains and sadly quite a common one. Being able to tackle them faster and more efficiently now is a really exciting development for us. But that’s not all, the Super Midi can also help with failed drain liners and imperfections in the pipe itself which are also things we come across a lot.

Call Us Now

If you have a blocked drain in Hove, Worthing, Storrington, Chichester, Horsham or anywhere in Sussex then get in touch! You may not need the Super Midi but if you do have any of these more serious problems we have the best tool to deal with it quickly and safely!

Adur and Worthing Councils – Who is responsible for your drains?

When it comes to drains most people don’t actually know the “ins and outs” of what they are responsible for and what the council looks after. On top of that most people don’t know the difference between a drain or a sewer as far as a legal definition goes. for people who live in Worthing or the local area under Adur District Council we thought we would help clarify a few points!

What is a Drain?

According to Adur and Worthing Council the following definitions are used for sewers and drains

  • Drain – A drainage pipe that is serving a single property.
  • Sewer – A drainage pipe that is serving multiple properties.
  • Public Sewer – A sewer that has been adopted by the sewerage undertaker which in this case is Southern Water.
  • Private Sewer – A sewer pipe that is owned by all the homeowners that is serves.
  • Lateral Drain – A drainage pipe that serves one property but that sits outside of the boundary of that single property.

What Does This All Mean?

Well basically if the pipe coming out of your home is on your property then it is your responsibility to look after it, keep it flowing and get any blocked drain issues sorted. This means what you put down the drain in your kitchen, toilets and bathrooms is down to you and if your drain blocks on your property then you need to give us a call.

However, a drain that serves your property in Worthing or the local area but that is outside of your property boundary is actually down to Southern Water. That being said, this shouldn’t be a signal to put bad things down your sink because nearly all blockages that occur happen very close to the property and this means its your responsibility.

Southern Water – Responsibilities

Southern Water is responsible for the following:

  • Any drain that serves a property that is not within the property boundary of the owner.
  • A drain that serves a property that lies on another persons land.
  • A private sewer that serves more than one property.
  • Drains that serve blocks of flats, commercial buildings and the like.

Any unusual situations that include some of the above but have other factors should be discussed directly with Southern Water but our friendly team have a lot of experience so would be happy to help solved the issue.

Here are two useful pages to visit about how to treat your drains properly to avoid blockages:

https://www.southernwater.co.uk/bag-it-bin-it

http://www.southernwater.co.uk/at-home/your-wastewater/pain-in-the-drain/default.asp

What is a Pre Purchase Drain Survey?

Pre purchase drain surveys are also known as home buyers drain surveys. They are becoming more and more popular with first time buyers and experienced home owners but what are they and why might you need one?

Basically a pre purchase drain survey is just that; it is a full detailed survey of the drains in and around a property done before someone buys it. Buying a home is a serious thing and making sure everything is in good condition is nothing new but it seems drains have often been forgotten about only to become a very expensive problem later on.

What’s the Difference between a normal survey and a drain survey?

A normal RICS survey like a home buyers report or full building survey is focused very much on the property itself. By this we mean it looks at walls, ceilings, damp, structural issues, brick work and rendering and much more. It also covers some of the boundary issues and even things like loft spaces and windows. A pre purchase drain survey will look at a check a totally different a rarely thought of part of the property. Where the normal survey stops he drain survey begins. The only time a RICS surveyor will look at drains is if they feel there is an issue that they noticed at the surface or in the home like an odd smell. They would simply not be able to see if roots were growing into a pipe in the garden or if there was a connection issue out towards the road for example.

Normal surveys are critical when buying a house but so is a drain survey. The results of not getting one can be the same; expense, stress and repair work.

Is It Important with a New Build?

As with most things, the newer it is the less likely there is to be an issues. That being said however, there have been a number of cases of new build homes with drain issues where things were not installed properly in the first place. The advantage of getting a drain survey done is that the results can be used to get the construction company to pay for the repair work.

How Do I Know the Drains are All Part of the Property?

Most pre purchase drain surveys will actually help map out the drains as well as work out the ownership and responsibility. This can be very useful for a number of reasons. The first reason is that it’s useful to know before purchase especially if anything is wrong. The second is that an issue could arise 5 years down the line and having clear evidence and information to show which parts of the system are yours, the water companies or the neighbours could save a lot of time and money. The final reason is then when or if you come to sell the property this kind of report can really have a positive affect on a potential buyer.

 

If you would like more information about this kind of survey then Click Here OR if you would simply like to speak to us and book in your survey then Contact Us Today.

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