Reasons Your Drain Keeps Clogging

Clogged pipes are never a good thing and can be a challenge to deal with no matter when or where they happen. Your pipes can get clogged for several reasons, but regardless of why it happens, it can make a big mess. Knowing why your drain keeps clogging can help you take care of the problem so it stops happening once and for all.

If you need help with clogged drains or rooter service in Scottsdale, Arizona, or the Greater Phoenix Valley area, call Zest Plumbing. Here are some of the most common reasons drains keep clogging to help you troubleshoot and solve your issue.

Damaged Pipes

Damaged pipes are a common cause of clogs in drains. When pipes get holes or work themselves loose, they can fill with dirt or debris. This debris can make it so nothing can pass down the drain and through the pipe. Eventually, water and other debris will come back up out of the drain. Sometimes two pipes might separate in a way where one pipe blocks the other. If this occurs, water can’t flow properly, and it’ll come back out of the drain. A break that changes the slope of the pipes can also create a clog.

Environmental Issues

plant growing from clogged drain in scottsdale, AZ
Image by Radu Privantu| Licensed with CC BY 2.0

We all love the trees, bushes, and plants that grow in our yards. Unfortunately, the fauna in your yard can be the cause of your clogged drain. When a tree root pushes through your plumbing, it can block the way for anything to escape. The same is true for bushes and other plants that have roots near your pipes. Any plant life that’s put roots in your yard should be away from possible interference with your pipes. 

If a tree does put a root through your pipe, it can be a big job to get to the problem and repair it. The task may require digging deep into the ground to find the pipe and then along the pipe to pinpoint where the root has damaged it. You won’t be able to use your water without issues until you fix the pipe.

Oil, Grease, or Fat

In the kitchen sink, your drain might clog with oil, grease, or fat that you use when you cook. Washing dishes after preparing foods that use oil or contain fat, such as bacon or butter, allows fats and grease to go down your drain. Doing this regularly causes the oils and fats to stick to the pipes. Over time, the fats attract dirt and debris that you wash down the drain. If your drains aren’t cleaned often, you could experience a clog because of fat, oil, and grease buildup in your pipes.

Hair and Skin

Bathroom and shower drains constantly get hair and skin washed down them. The drain’s opening and the pipes can trap this hair and skin, and you might be able to see hair in your sink or shower drain. If you do see anything in your drain, pull it out to free water so it can flow down the pipes. A drain that still has a clog after you remove any visible sign of a hair clog could have more hair and skin trapped farther along the water system. You may need to call a professional for help.

Improper Use of Your Toilet

When you flush your toilet, the only things that should go down are water and toilet paper. People who use their toilets improperly are likely to experience a clog at some point. Sometimes, even using too much toilet paper can cause a clog. Wipes, even those that claim to be “flushable,” should never go down the toilet drain. These are other things people commonly flush but shouldn’t:

  • Feminine hygiene products.
  • Cotton swabs.
  • Medications.
  • Paper towels.
  • Napkins.
  • Cotton balls.
  • Cat litter.
  • Dental floss.
  • Small objects, such as toys and keys.

Your toilet is probably the last thing you want getting clogged, so make sure you only flush toilet paper. It’s also a good idea to teach children to use the proper amount of toilet paper when they go to the bathroom.

Buildup in the Pipes

Water and other liquids contain minerals. These minerals build up on the walls of your pipes. Although it takes years, the mineral buildup can eventually clog your drains and pipes. Most of the time before the pipes clog, you might notice an unusual, possibly metallic taste in your water caused by mineral buildup. However, a mineral buildup farther in the line may go unnoticed until water can no longer pass through the pipes, forcing it back through the drain. Pipes with a lot of mineral deposits on them require descaling, a job typically handled by a professional.

Food, Soap, and Other Objects

Food, soap, and other objects can get stuck in your drains. When you wash dishes in the sink or the dishwasher, food particles can slip down the drain. The small food scraps can stack up in the drain if they don’t wash down properly. Soap also builds up over time because it leaves a residue that can be hard to clean. Sometimes, small objects such as a child’s toy or a piece of jewelry, can slip down the drain and catch partway down it. Each of these things on its own or combined can cause clogs.

Let Us Help You Keep Your Drains Clean

A drain that keeps clogging is more than just an annoyance; it’s an issue you need to address before it creates bigger plumbing problems. One of the best ways to prevent your drains from clogging altogether is to get regular plumbing inspections. Your plumber can keep your drains doing their job so you don’t have to deal with any messes or inconveniences. If you’re in the Scottsdale, Arizona, or Greater Phoenix Valley area, let the team at Zest Plumbing and Drain help you keep your drains clean and free of clogs. Give us a call to schedule an appointment.

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