Record number of drainage rods stuck in sewer

Lanes engineers have discovered what is believed to be a record number of drain rods blocking a sewer.

They pulled 55 of the rods from a foul water pipe leading from a restaurant in a town just outside London. No wonder the Lanes team was responding to an urgent call about a badly blocked drain!

It is highly probable that an inexperienced drainage operator, or the business owner, had been using the rods to try to clear persistent drain blockages.

If not used properly, it is possible for drain rods, or sections of them, to become stuck or lost in sewer pipes.

The people using the rods, then give up trying to get them out, leaving an object behind that causes an even bigger blockage problem.

Drain rods are readily available at DIY stores and builder’s merchants, so business or home owners can be tempted to try to use them to avoid paying for professional help with unblocking drains.

Quite often, Lanes finds rods down sewers when they are called to unblock drains. Either the rods have contributed to the blockage or it is a sign that another drainage company or drain owner has made a failed attempt to clear the pipe.

But to find 55 rods down the same pipe is extraordinary, and is the largest number ever discovered by a Lanes Group team. What is more, the engineers also found three plungers and two drain pigtails.

You cannot say these ‘amateurs’ did not have a good go at trying to solve their drain problems!

Drain rods are made up of a number of sections which are connected to make a long rod that can be pushed along a pipe to where the blockage is located. They can be useful, but they have their limitations.

In the wrong hands, they can merely push drain blockages further along the pipe, where they become out of reach or can cause problems for neighbouring properties.

Once Lanes engineers had removed all the drain rods, they used a CCTV camera to inspect the pipe and make sure it was completely clear and blockage-free.

Let’s hope the next time the pipe is checked, it will contain only what it is meant to.

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