Blockage

Stop the Block!

Millions of pounds are spent cleaning drains and sewers right across our region because of products that shouldn’t be in them. Wet wipes, period products, cotton wool, cotton buds, nappies, and dental floss are just some of the culprits. Flushed wet wipes don’t just disappear down the u-bend and disintegrate, they clump together and cause havoc in the pipes, drains and sewers.

Cooking oil, fats and grease can also create blockages known as ‘fatbergs’ (a congealed mass of fats, oils and bathroom rubbish) which clog up the underground sewer pipes. Blockages can lead to sewage flooding in homes, businesses and pollution in the environment.

Help us to Stop the Block!

We know a thing or two about the best ways to prevent blockages and sewer flooding. We’ve put together these hints and tips to help avoid blocked pipes and drains in your home.

How to avoid blockages in the bathroom

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Only flush the 3 Ps

Pee, Poo, and (toilet) Paper

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Bin wet wipes

Don't flush wet wipes, even if the packaging is labelled to say they are flushable

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Bin bathroom rubbish

Put period products, cotton pads, dental floss and nappies in the bin

Wet wipe being flushed

How to avoid blockages in the kitchen

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Don’t pour oils down the sink

Fats, oils, and greases solidify and block drains

Do scrape cooking oils and leftover food into the bin

Wait for oils and food waste to cool and then throw them away

Use a sink strainer

Use a strainer to catch any leftover food bits going down the plughole

Oil being scraped into bin

Stop the Block at your place of work

Do you work in a restaurant, cafe, take-away or hospitality business? The last thing you need is sewage flooding in your premises. Flooding, blockages and bad smells coming from drains can all be avoided by making small changes to the way you dispose of cooking fats, oils, grease and leftover food. Don’t put your business at risk of flooding or costly plumbing bills to remove blockages. Simply click the link below and find out more about how you can keep your pipes and drains blockage-free.

Preventing blockages
Air-fryer
  • Pouring fats, oils and grease (FOG) down the sink and flushing wet wipes, period products and other bathroom rubbish down the toilet can lead to damage not only to your home but also the environment.

    Blockages in the pipes in your home or on your property can cause sewage to back up into your bathroom and kitchen leading to an expensive and smelly problem for you to fix.

    A build-up of flushed products and FOG create fatbergs which restrict the flow of wastewater through the sewer network and reduce the capacity of the sewers. This can lead to storm overflows spills into rivers during heavy rainfall. Please help us to keep rivers cleaner and safer for everyone by putting all bathroom rubbish and all cooking oils and leftover food in the bin.

  • It’s often hard to know where a blockage is and who owns which bit of the pipework so it's worth having a quick look at who looks after what inside and outside the boundary of your home on our sewers and drains explained page.

    If you’re still unsure, don’t worry. We’re happy to help get problems sorted, and the quickest way is to visit our online tool here. If it’s our responsibility (or we’re not sure), we’ll send one of our engineers out to have a look. We'll always try to let you know when we'll be able to get to you and, if it changes, we’ll try to keep you informed.

    When we come out to look at the blockage, we'll confirm if the blocked pipework belongs to us. If it does, we'll clear it for free and try to investigate the cause of the blockage.

    If the blockage is within your own private drains, unfortunately we can't clear it for you, but we'll try to offer advice on how you can sort the problem. 

Monster found in Liverpool sewer!

Measuring a whopping 250 metres, this sewer monster is formed from a congealed mass of fats, grease, oil, wet wipes, period products and other products which shouldn’t have been poured down the sink or flushed down the loo.

More about fatbergs