Blocked drains are a common plumbing issue. They are caused by excess debris building up within the pipes, and outdoor pipes can become blocked up if there is any type of crack or hole in the pipe that allows for tree roots to work their way inside. Indoor pipes can become clogged due to un-flushable items like sanitary napkins, paper towels, and baby wipes getting flushed down the drain, and shower drains can become plugged up with hair that sheds during a shower. Clogged pipes can also cause back up, and many times homeowners will notice murky colored water with sewage particles in their sinks or bathtubs. There may also be a foul odor present. There are over the counter drain cleaners that can help with minor blockage issues, but if the back up is being caused by tree roots or heavy debris blockage, it is always best to contact a professional plumbing service.
Plumbers have special tools that they use to remove blockages, and the most common tool used is what is called a snake. The term “snake the drain” refers to the plumber inserting a long, flexible tool into the pipe. There are different varieties of drain snakes that can be used, and they can be anywhere from two to fifty feet in length. The plumber will attempt to remove the blockage this way, and they also have industrial strength drain cleaners that can assist in moving the blockage along. If the pipes are old or damaged, the plumber may need to patch them up or replace the entire pipe. If there are tree roots growing inside the sewer line, the plumber may use a chemical called copper sulfate to help dissolve the roots, or they may have to manually cut the roots in order to remove them completely. Once the plumber gets to the source of the blockage and it has been properly removed, the plumbing in the home or building should start running smoothly again.
Emergency Plumbing Services
Since plumbing disasters can happen at all times of the day and night, most plumbers offer 24-hour emergency services. Blocked drain can cause flooding, as well as damage to the carpet and flooring, and broken and burst pipes can cause severe water damage as well. It is always recommended to immediately shut off the water source if possible during a plumbing emergency, and the next step will be to contact a professional plumber who offers emergency services. There is usually an extra charge added if a plumber is needed after hours or on holidays, but paying an extra service charge is definitely worth it if it means preventing further damage caused by a plumbing malfunction. The emergency plumbing technician will arrive at the location as soon as possible and assess the issue. They will give the home or building owner a full estimate of costs before getting started. The cost of a plumbing job, emergency or otherwise, will depend on what type of work needs to be done and if any replacement parts are needed.