The Top 5 Signs Your Drains Might Be Blocked: What Every Homeowner Should Know


Free-flowing drains are the sign of a well-maintained home. However, old drains and a bit of our carelessness can disrupt the flow of drains and later turn them into major problems. Have you been encountering that water in kitchen sinks is not draining as it should be? Or does the unpleasant smell in the bathrooms and kitchens make you stay awake at night? 

Blocked drains are a common but preventable issue in many homes. Ignoring the early warning signs of a clogged drain can cause major repairs, water damage, and inconvenience in using bathrooms and kitchens safely. 

In this blog, we will walk you through all the warning signs to save you time and money. As we move forward, you’ll realise why plumber services in Footscray are the need of the hour to prevent such issues from happening again.

Let’s dive straight into the signs that exaggerate the drainage problems in your house.

5 Early Warning Signs of Blocked Drainage and How to Prevent Them?

Here’s a detailed look at the top five signs that indicate you are dealing with a blocked drain. 

1. Slow Draining

Is the water in your kitchen sink taking forever to drain? Then, it is the most obvious sign of jammed drains. While minor clogs in the sinks, showers, or other drainage systems are occasional and clear up on their own, consistent and slow draining is a clear signal that there might be a significant blockage somewhere in your plumbing system. 

This usually happens when hair, soap residue, or other small waste accumulates under the pipes, leaving less space for water to move freely. 

What To Do:

  • Regularly clean the stoppers in your sinks and bathtubs to remove hair and other debris.
  • You can use a plunger or a plumber’s snake to clear out the clog, or you can consider using a gentle drain cleaning solution.
  • Consider hiring plumber services in Footscray. Professionals diagnose the problem with CCTV inspection and pinpoint the major causes. They also use a hydro-jet cleaning method to effectively remove the buildup entirely.

2. Unusual Noises

Gurgling sounds coming from your drains and toilet can be an eerie and telling sign of a drain blockage. These sounds may be especially noticeable after running the dishwasher, washing machine, or toilet flushing.

When air suddenly traps and releases inside the drainage system, it creates annoying noises that require immediate attention. This is often an indicator that water is not flowing freely and that something is stopping it from moving. Some major causes of drain noises are improper ventilation, high water pressure, poor water supply, or worn-out washers. 

What To Do:

  • Listen to where the noise is coming from to help localise the issue.
  • Use gutter guards to catch the fine particles.
  • Check if the vents are clear from bird nests, leaves, and other debris. 
  • Install a pressure regulator to maintain the correct pressure throughout your home. Turn on all the water faucets simultaneously until the water flows without noise.
  • Avoid using chemical cleaners as they may worsen the blockage. It’s best to consult with a professional plumber in Footscray if plunging doesn’t resolve the noises.

3. Bad Odours

If you end up draining food particles, soap scum, grease, or hair inside the kitchen sinks or bathtubs, then you might be experiencing flooding drains that are also emitting foul smells. As these materials break down, they release bad odours and signal immediate attention. Persistent bad smells can also indicate deeper serious issues within the sewage system.

What To Do:

  • Pour a mixture of vinegar and hot water down the drain to help dissolve organic matter that might be causing the smell.
  • Removing the p-trap under the sink and cleaning it can be an effective remedy if the bad smell problem persists.
  • If nothing works, call a professional plumber in Footscray. This might be a sewer line problem that requires CCTV inspection and pipe relining. 

4. Water Backing Up

Water backing up from a sink drain or toilet is a definite sign of a blockage. When the water that should go down the drain has nowhere to go due to a blockage, it will flow back up through the pipes and manifest at the lowest point, usually your shower or basement floor drain.

If water is backing up across all the fixtures simultaneously, then it is also a sign of a blocked sewer system. Common culprits might include tree roots, damaged pipes, or leaking sewer lines.

What To Do:

  • Immediately stop using plumbing fixtures that could add more water to the system.
  • Hydro-jet all the draining systems to remove the obstacles causing the water backup. 
  • Check with the professional plumber in Footscray to see if the concern is with damaged pipes or broken sewer lines. 
  • Check if the cleanout (a special fitting on your waste piping) is clear; clearing it can sometimes immediately resolve the issue.

5. Frequent Need to Plunge

If you find yourself reaching for the plunger more often than usual, it’s a sign that something isn’t right. Frequent clogs, especially in different fixtures, suggest a deeper problem and require a thorough inspection of your house’s plumbing system. Multiple blockages can also indicate that the main sewer line obstructs the water and requires professional intervention.

What To Do:

  • Use a sewer snake to try to clear out the main line.
  • If snaking the line doesn’t help, it’s time to call a professional plumber. Persistent issues often require a camera inspection to diagnose and resolve them.

Final Words

Recognising these five signs can help homeowners identify and address blocked drains before they become a bigger problem. Regular maintenance, like cleaning drain stoppers and using natural cleaners for routine flushing, can prevent many issues. However, when home remedies aren’t enough, it’s essential to take plumber services in Footscray to assess and fix the problem correctly and safely.

Recognising the early signs can help you maintain a healthy plumbing system and avoid the headaches of unexpected repairs. If you are looking for professional Footscray plumbers, contact NLK Plumbing today. 


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