How to deal with blocked plumbing

Unblocking baths, basins, showers, sinks or toilets

Please note:

  • The trap always holds some water which stops air or foul smells coming up the drain
  • Blockages in basins, sinks or showers are usually caused by a build-up of trapped waste e.g. cooking oil, fat, tea leaves and hair. To stop this happening you should flush waste pipes and traps with hot water regularly. At least once a month, use a clearing product to clear them (do not use caustic soda as it destroys modern plastic fittings).
  • If more than one fitting (bath, basin, sink or shower) is blocked, the blockage may be in the soil stack or main drain. This will need to be cleared by a contractor, so please report it as a repair.
  • Blocked toilets are usually caused by unusual objects such as nappies, toys or toilet fresheners. To avoid this, do not flush anything other than toilet paper. 
  • If your property is connected to a sewage treatment plant then it is recommended to use products that are suitable for septic tanks and other non-collective sanitation systems. Household cleaning products that are environmentally friendly should be preferred.

You will need:

  • A bowl/bucket, a jug/mug and a cloth
  • A plunger (for the toilet you can use a toilet brush)
  • Rubber gloves
  • Towels 

To unblock a bath, basin or sink:

  1. Scoop out most of the water from the bowl so you can easily get to the plughole.
  2. Hold the cloth tightly over the overflow opening.
  3. Place the plunger over the plug hole and pump it up and down quickly.
  4. If there is no improvement, you should contact us to report it as a repair.

To unblock a toilet:

  1. If the pan is already full, scoop out some of the water using a jug/mug and put this into a bowl/bucket.
  2. Push the brush or plunger to the bottom of the pan.
  3. Pump it up and down quickly about 10 times. This should shift the blockage.
  4. Flush the toilet to see whether the blockage has gone.
  5. You may need to repeat this process several times before the toilet flushes normally. If there is no improvement, you should contact us to report it as a repair.
  6. When you have finished, thoroughly wash your hands and equipment using cleaning products.
Google translate Google translate
click to choose
Reachdeck Reachdeck
Colour contrast Contrast
Font size Text size