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Preventative Measures

There are some simple preventative measures that you can take to reduce the likelihood of a blocked drain whether it is through structural defects or foreign objects and they are listed below:

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• Regularly remove any hairs that get trapped in the waste plug hole.

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• Keep small objects such as combs, medicine bottles and toilet rolls away from places where they could accidentally fall into the toilet.

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• Regularly flush the wash basin and bath or shower pipework with hot water and a disinfectant to clear soap residue and prevent build up over time

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• Don’t flush away large and disposable items such as sanitary towels, nappies or product wrapping as they can become caught in the drainage pipe.

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• Do not dispose of waste food scraps and cuttings down the kitchen sink. These are much better composted. If any items do fall into the sink pull the vegetable material out of the plug hole, do not try to poke through as you could impact the blockage making it harder to remove.

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• Never dispose of cooking fats down the drain system. As they hit cold water they will solidify. If there is absolutely no alternative you should dilute and emulsify the fats by mixing them with hot water and of detergent. Keep the water running for a minute after you have done this to keep a clear water flow.

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Regular Maintenance
There are also a set of regular maintenance activities which can reduce the likelihood of a drains problem.

• Check the house roof gutters and rain downpipes twice a year. Take care when working at height but remove any accumulated debris and leaves with a trowel

• Regularly check that your drains are free-flowing by periodically lifting the inspection covers and make sure that these can easily be accessed

• Keep external drain grids free of fallen leaves, autumn moss and other garden materials. As with the internal drains you should regularly wash external drains with hot water and disinfectant.

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For complete peace of mind, particularly if you are running a business you can request a regular drain surveys and get your drainage system checked regularly by a CCTV drain inspection service. This will give early warning of any potential blockages and also enables you to keep an eye on the structural condition of the drainage pipework. Remember that drain leaks can result in environmental pollution in contravention of section 85 of the Water Resources Act 1991.

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