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Drain unblocking — How to avoid autumn leaves blocking your drains

The summer has extended longer into the year than usual in 2020, but whether we want to admit it to ourselves or not, summer is coming to an end and we’re about to head firmly into the autumn and winter months. Autumn brings its own pleasures, with the beautiful burnt orange, red and brown colours on the leaves and plants that you only see in autumn.

Yet with those leaves changing colour and falling off trees, heavier rainfall and colder weather leading to pooling water freezing, it’s sensible to check your drains and make sure everything is flowing properly.

It’s inevitable that the leaves will fall off the tree, so the real trick is taking preventative measures to stop those leaves blocking your outdoor drains in the first place. With that in mind, here are our top tips on how to avoid needing to get your drain unblocked during autumn.

Get the rake out of the shed

If you’ve noticed leaves starting to pile up in your garden or anywhere outside your home, we recommend getting out your rake and recycling them in an appropriate manner —potentially in your garden waste bags — to make sure they don’t blow into your drainage system.

Scoop out what you can

Assuming it’s safe and easy to do so, if you see leaves collecting in your drain, don a pair of thick gardening gloves and scoop out as many as you can before they start to clog up your pipework. As long as you can remove a majority of leaves, some of the harder to reach debris will hopefully be washed away.

Install a drain cover

There are drain covers available for your outdoor drains that reduce the chance of blockages. These guards act in a similar way to a sieve; water and liquid drains through but leaves and other solids are captured. These guards will need to be cleaned regularly to remove the build up of leaves, otherwise you’ll end up with the same problems!

Clean your drain pipes

With the autumn wind and tall trees, leaves can be blown onto roofs and end up in your drainpipes. Just like the drains on the ground, these can become clogged with leaves, leading to blockages and drainage problems. Employ a professional or carefully and safely brave a ladder yourself to clear those drainpipes; doing this regularly throughout autumn is recommended if your roof is close to trees.

Consider a CCTV Drainage Survey

Despite your best efforts if you do experience a blockage, with the majority of our drainage systems existing underground, it can sometimes be tough to know exactly what the cause of the blockage might be, even if we suspect an autumn leaves.

Our CCTV Drainage Survey involves a member of our team pushing a specialist camera down your drain, recording high quality footage that can then be used to generate a survey and find the exact cause of any problems in your drain and figure out the perfect solution to clear it safely and quickly.

Clear-flow are experts in unblocking drains, particularly those which have become blocked because of autumn leaves, twigs and debris. If you have a blocked drain and need a CCTV drainage survey, want some help with drain covers or need some advice on your drainage, call us on 0800 317 082.

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