The Most Common Causes Of Clogged Drains

Clogged drains are a hassle for every homeowner. Nobody wants to spend their time and energy unclogging the toilet or sink to restore normal water supply!

Prevention is always better than cure and this statement also applies when it comes to clogged drains. Given below are the most common causes of clogged drains.

Food Particles

The drain should never be considered as an alternative to a garbage disposal bucket or trash can. While some food items in fluid form can be washed down the drain, solid foods should never be given the same treatment.

Households which consume a lot of rice should use strainers or remove leftovers from the plates before they are washed. It might not be a problem initially but you will end up with a clogged drain if you have a habit of discarding food items in the sink.


Hair is one of the most common causes for clogged drains but also the most neglected. Hair collecting in drains is something we cannot control. But we can stop it before it gets to the point where it can physically clog your drains. Make sure to get a drain stopper for your bathroom. Check the drain for accumulated hair after every shower and remove it periodically. Don’t let it build up.

Sanitary Items

Sanitary items are not meant to be flushed in the toilet. Their physical structure makes it hard for them to be disintegrated or broken down. These items can range from diapers and napkins to tampons and pads. Some kinds of toilet paper can be flushed but not in excessive amounts. It is generally recommended to avoid flushing them anyway. Only biodegradable toilet paper can be properly flushed down the drain. 

Even if diaper and feminine hygiene products claim to be flushable on the packet, you should avoid doing it. They can cause a massive clog in your drain in no time if you practice flushing them on a regular basis.

Dirt, Mud And Sand

Sand, mud and other dirt can make their way down the drain in unexpected ways. This can happen when washing plant pots or other items which have traces of dirt. When dirt or mud goes down your drain it can build up and lead to the clogging of drains. You can use tools like a drain snake for unclogging a drain clogged with dirt or sand.

Haircare And Skincare Products

Many haircare and skincare products contain chemicals which can build up and clog your drain. Hair products like conditioners and hair masks have waxes and oils. If they are present in excessive amounts they can combine with other dirts in the drain to form unnecessary buildup. Although drain clogs due to hair products are less common, skincare products can be a greater concern. Some skincare products, especially dry peels can be a problem.

Leaves, Roots And Twigs

Roots and leaves are usually the unexpected causes of clogs. Most of the time, they are not deliberate. If you live in a house surrounded by trees or have a tree in your backyard, your drain is more susceptible to these kinds of clogs. 

They are usually manifested by gurgling sounds, low water pressure or a sudden drop in the quantity of water coming from your taps. Pipes with leaks tend to attract roots from nearby trees which in turn creep into the pipes and create blocks.

Greasy Liquids

Greasy liquids and fluids can do more damage than you think. We are all well aware of the fact that oil and water do not mix. People dump cooking oils and other greasy liquids down the sink thinking it is going to naturally flow down the pipes along with the water. Rather, it prevents the effective flow of water and blocks the pipes. Clumps of grease will combine with each other and clog your drains.

Random Objects

Apart from the common culprits there can be a number of random objects which might have accidently made their way into the drain. Some people drop objects into the toilet by mistake and flush them instead of retrieving them. 

This crucial mistake could lead to a clogged drain and you will end up losing your time and money. If you have kids, make sure they don’t drop marbles or other small toys into the toilet.

Some clogged drains have simple fixes while some might require professional help. You might be contributing to these causes knowingly or unknowingly. Be aware of these different causes and try to prevent them as much as possible. Clear out your drains periodically to prevent buildup.