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The most disturbing thing about blocked drains and blocked pipes is the rate at which they develop into large-scale problems. What starts as slow water drainage can escalate into flooding and sewage backup if not attended to on time. Hence, it is important to watch out for the early signs and causes.

In this piece, we have compiled the 8 common causes of blocked drains in Melbourne while adding the fix and prevention in each case.

We also have a guide on unblocking a drain to help clear minor blockages yourself.

1. Soap

Grease or fat is part of the constituents making up a traditional soap bar. When this fat mixes with the minerals in water, the result is a hard residue or soap scum. This, in turn, clogs pipes and stains bath fittings. To prevent this, use soap-free washes, and the most straightforward fix is to pressure clean all your pipes to get rid of these soap substances.

2. Hair

Hair can block shower and sink drains, considering its ability to bind with sticky substances, such as grease, and forming clogs. Prevention is the best fix for blocked drainages caused by hair. Put guards in place to catch hair and clear the guards frequently.

3. Dirt

Most of us rely on the drain and pipes to wash up whatever we throw at them. However, the truth is that the accumulation of this excess dirt can lead to blockages (or smelly drains). This can be prevented by shaking and rinsing extra mud or dirt off your body or clothes before washing them indoors.

4. Accumulation Of Minerals

Hard water contains dissolved minerals, which can accumulate and become insoluble, thus blocking the drains. You can either install a water softener for your home (if you are restricted to a hard water supply) or descale and eliminate sediments and accumulations in your pipes. Fully formed mineral masses blocking your drains and pipes can be difficult to remove. Hence, bring in a competent plumber to take a look and fix your blocked drains and pipes.

5. Food Waste

Rather than allowing your food waste to go down the drain, it should be transferred into a composting pile. Even if you have a sink with a garbage disposal, do not send food waste down the drain. Watch out for tea leaves, coffee grounds, and other unbreakable wastes. Likewise, grease or oil becomes solids in the pipes, thus causing a blockage. To dispose of greasy and oily food wastes, absorb them on a paper towel and transfer them to the compost.

6. Small Objects

The damages caused by small objects in your plumbing supply are usually serious. Your toilet, sink, or drain is made to allow only human waste, toilet paper, and water. Everything else will eventually cause blockages and clogs. So, ensure that you dispose of other objects using compost, trash, or recycling. If you have plumbing problems caused by these foreign objects, bring in a professional local plumber to check and repair as required.

7. Tree Roots

Your underground pipes are prone to cracks or leaks, no matter how small, caused by tree root growth. Roots get more significant once they find their way into your pipes and end up blocking the flow of water and damaging pipes. Common in stormwater drain blockages, you will require the service of a plumbing company to clear tree roots from pipes effectively. Such serious situations may require excavation, trenchless repair, pressure jet cleaning, and rooter service. To prevent this, always observe the condition of your drains and monitor the root development of your trees and plants.

8. Accumulation Of Toilet Paper

Everyone will experience it at some stage, but there’s nothing like realising your toilet drain is blocked. When there is too much toilet paper in your pipes, it causes clogging, and your toilets will end up not flushing. If the pipes still allow water flow, you can dissolve or shift the toilet paper using a plunger. However, for a toilet that doesn’t drain, you should call a plumber to handle the situation.


Blocked drains are now more common than ever, and in most cases, the best fix is prevention. Avoid doing things that will clog your drain, including sending down the wrong things or trying to clear the pipes by forcing down other objects or chemicals. When your blocked pipes and drains require an instant fix, call an expert plumber like the guys at Ezy-Plumb to look at them and make the necessary repairs.

Petros Ttofari
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