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How to Prevent Blocked Baths in Rental Properties

#Blocked Bath

Learn essential strategies to avoid blocked baths in rental properties, minimise plumbing issues, and enhance the rental experience for landlords and tenants alike.

Rent House Blocks

As a landlord, one of the most common and frustrating issues you may encounter is a blocked bath or shower drain in your rental property. A clogged drain not only causes an inconvenience for your tenants but can also lead to water damage and mould if left unresolved.

While some blockages are inevitable from time to time, especially in older properties, there are steps you can take to help prevent blocked drains from happening in the first place. Being proactive about maintenance and educating your tenants on proper drain care will save you time, money, and headaches in the long run. In this article, we’ll explore some of the top tips for keeping drains free-flowing and avoiding blocked baths in your rental units.

Inspect and Maintain Pipes Regularly

One of the best ways to avoid blocked drains is to inspect and maintain your plumbing system carefully. Clogs often occur over time as debris, hair, and soap scum accumulate in the pipes. Regular inspections and maintenance can help prevent major blockages before they happen.

You should inspect exposed pipes under sinks and bathrooms for any leaks, cracks, or bowing that could indicate an issue. Catching small problems early is key. Also, check for slow drains by filling sinks and tubs and timing how quickly they empty. Slow drainage often precedes full blockages.

Bath Tap Wall

It’s ideal to flush drains regularly with hot water to help dissolve buildup. Once a month is a good frequency. For extra cleaning power, use a drain cleaner or baking soda and vinegar. Removing drain screens and pipe traps to check for accumulated debris is also wise. Rinse and scrub away any gunk you find.

Consider having main sewer lines professionally inspected and cleaned annually using a drain auger or hydro-jetting, as roots, grease, and mineral deposits can cause major sewer clogs. Replacing old and corroded or damaged pipes and fixtures allows for better drainage with newer pipes.

Ensuring any tree roots are trimmed back from underground sewer lines prevents intrusion and damage. Following this routine drain maintenance schedule will help keep pipes debris-free and flowing.

Educate Tenants on the Proper Use

Many drain clogs are caused not by faulty plumbing but by improper use. Educating your tenants on how to prevent clogged drains is crucial.

Make sure tenants understand they should never pour grease, oil, or fat down the sink. Grease will cool and coat pipes, causing major blockages. Tenants should collect grease in a container and dispose of it in the trash after it hardens. Solid food scraps, coffee grounds, and hair should also be disposed of in the garbage rather than washed down the drain. Using drain strainers in sinks and tubs catches debris before it enters pipes.

Caution tenants against letting soap, shampoo, and conditioner residue build up in tubs and showers as it leaves a film that accumulates. Tenants should let hot water run for a few minutes after bathing to rinse away residue. Disposing dental floss, feminine hygiene products, and flushable wipes in the trash rather than the toilet prevents clogs.

While chemical drain cleaners may seem like an easy fix, they can damage pipes, so mechanical means like plungers or snakes are preferable if clogs occur. Knowing the proper way to use drains will help tenants avoid causing blockages.

Choose Drain-Friendly Fixtures

When renovating or replacing plumbing fixtures in your rental property, choose components that resist drainage issues. Look for sinks, tubs, and showers designed to prevent clogging. Deep, curved sinks and smooth-edged tubs allow water to drain freely without catching debris. Slotted or perforated drain covers allow more water through while catching hair and gunk. Pop-up stoppers on sinks and tub drains are more prone to clogs than simple open drains.

Paint Peeling Tub

If possible, replace old brass or galvanised steel drain assemblies with new PVC fittings that are less likely to corrode and accumulate mineral deposits over time. Finally, install floor and shower drains with integrated traps and membranes to prevent hair build-up.

Taking drain-friendliness into account when selecting plumbing fixtures and drain components can directly reduce future clogs and backups. Consult with your plumber about the best options when renovating rentals.

Respond Quickly to Clogs

Even with vigilant maintenance and tenant education, clogged drains still happen occasionally. Having a plan in place to respond quickly is key to minimising water damage and tenant complaints.

Make sure tenants know to report slow or blocked drains immediately before the problem worsens. Provide clear instructions for clearing the drain with a plunger if simple clogs occur. Offer to provide plungers for each unit if needed.

Plunging Bath Water

Respond promptly to serious clogs and backups or with a plumber to diagnose and clear the blockage. Rooter cables, augers, or hydro-jetting can clear stubborn clogs in main drain lines that plungers cannot.

Having an emergency plumber you can call for after-hours issues can prevent scenarios from escalating into major headaches. Make it known to tenants that you take drain problems seriously and will address them quickly to provide assurance. Taking quick action at the first sign of a clog can often resolve issues before they become large-scale problems requiring more extensive repairs.

The Plumbing Specialists You Can Trust

As a rental property owner, preventing blocked drains requires foresight and diligence. Sticking to regular drain maintenance, choosing optimal plumbing fixtures, and educating tenants on proper usage go a long way in avoiding major clogging issues. However, even the most prepared landlord will inevitably have to deal with a blocked drain now and then.

Having established relationships with plumbers you trust and can call on short notice, like Service First Plumbing, provides peace of mind. Our team of drain specialists can quickly diagnose clogs and get your rental property’s plumbing back in working order.

We utilise state-of-the-art equipment to clear all types of drain obstructions efficiently and cost-effectively. Our techs are experienced in preventing water damage throughout repairs.

From routine drain cleaning to emergency clog removal, Service First Plumbing has landlords covered. Don’t let rental property plumbing headaches get you down. Call us anytime for reliable solutions to keep your drains running smoothly.

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