A blocked drain, whether it's completely closed off or still draining slowly, is going to need fixing eventually. The question is, how long can it wait?
In many cases, a blocked drain doesn't need urgent attention and certainly wouldn't constitute an emergency. Sometimes, however, you need to get someone out to look at your drain as soon as possible.
Knowing when those times are can save you a lot of money and stress and can prevent potential health risks. Here are the most common situations where a blocked drain constitutes a plumbing emergency.
When There's Also a Leak
If your blocked drain is accompanied by a leak or a slow drip, the problem is only going to get worse. In a lot of cases, this can happen faster than you think. With water leaking into the area of a blockage, you might find yourself with a flood in a short time. Flooding causes extensive damage and expensive repairs and also causes significant danger when it's near any electrical cabling.
When your blocked drain is constantly having to deal with water, don't wait to find out what happens. It's not worth leaving it overnight since you could find yourself with bad flooding when the morning arrives.
When It Stops Your Business
Reliable drainage is essential for lots of business types. When drains become blocked, sometimes it's inconvenient but bearable. But if your blockage stops you being able to carry out your work and continue as normal, it counts as an emergency.
Every moment you leave the blockage, you could be losing out on money. As soon as you realise the impact the blocked drain is having on your business, you should get it seen to.
When You Work With Food
Food preparation requires excellent hygiene and a carefully controlled environment. Blocked drains can interfere with this in a number of different ways.
First of all, it doesn't take long for a blocked drain to start smelling. This is particularly problematic if the blockage is stopping dirty water from draining away or the drain is blocked with food remains. In an environment where you're preparing food, bad smells can ruin your product and reputation and should be dealt with as soon as possible.
Bad smells aside, blocked drains have a big impact on your kitchen's hygiene. Standing water is a breeding ground for bacteria like salmonella, which are spread easily. On top of that, if you're not able to wash your dishes properly, you won't be able to operate your kitchen as you should.
When It Puts a Wide Area at Risk
Blocked drains and the overflow issues they cause are bad enough in a small, contained area, but when they affect larger areas, the problems are multiplied. If you're concerned your business may flood and spread water into neighbouring buildings or out onto the street, this is an urgent situation. If you're quick enough, you may be able to prevent the issue becoming too serious.
Similarly, if you're in charge of a large public area like a park, shopping centre or just a street, blocked drains can cause problems for large numbers of people. They may also prevent several businesses from being able to operate as normal.
If a drain is blocked on or near to a road, it can cause hazardous conditions for drivers. This is something you should be aware of when you're assessing the risk, even if the road is currently clear of water.
Whether you're certain you have an emergency or you're not sure if your situation counts, contact us to discuss the problem. We're available for call-outs 24/7, and we'll be happy to give you our opinion on the best course of action.