Some clogged pipes may cause minor headaches and hassles, while others inflict major damage and expense. Let’s take a look in to the common causes of blocked drains and possible fixes and preventive measures to avoid this from occurring. 

Below are the most common causes of blocked drains and how you can prevent them. If you would prefer to call the experts in, you may contact our plumbers in Toronto

The most common reasons for blocked drains are

  • Hair
  • Plants and Dirt
  • Grease Build-up
  • Putting food waste & other waste in the drain
  • Toiletries
  • Heavy Rain and Storms
  • Broken Pipes
  • Poor Water Flow
  • Bad Pipe Installation
  • Foreign Objects 


1.Food Waste

Food waste clogs are generally an issue as they never go down the drain, even if you have a garbage disposal in your sink. Instead, food waste can still clog up your pipes. This is particularly important for some food wastes like tea leaves and coffee grounds, they are especially bad because they don’t break down. Other foods to be cautious of include grease or oil as they will solidify in the pipes and eventually clog the pipework. 

To prevent this from happening, set up a compost bin for food waste and avoid depositing food waste down drains, even if you do have a garbage disposal.


It may not seem like hair can cause such a big problem, however, a build-up of hair will start to clog your drain.  Most times it’s a moderately easy task to simply ‘remove the hair’, but it can bind with grease and other sticky substances to form clogs. This can be prevented by simply using a hair strainer drain guard to catch hair and clean it regularly.

3.Foreign Objects

Any foreign objects, including children’s toys to soap, food build-up, sanitary items and other materials that have been put down the drain may not initially cause a blockage but overtime they will collect and cause a block eventually. So be mindful about what you put down your toilet to help prevent blockages from occurring and be wary of anything that may have accidentally dropped in, causing a drain blockage.


Baby wipes and toilet paper are commonly known to block drains and Using moderate amounts of toilet paper should not cause any issues. Toilet paper has been designed to be flushed down the drain, but too much toilet paper can clog your drains and stop your toilets from flushing. Baby products such as wipes and nappies are the two common issue items known to block drains as they are not designed to go down the toilet however, many people do flush them! As they do not disintegrate the way that toilet paper does because such items become immersed with water, they absorb the moisture and enlarge and they will get caught up in your pipes and cause blockages. This way of disposing of toiletries is harmful for the environment and everyone should be encouraged to dispose of toiletries the right way, use small batches of paper over several flushes.

5.Trees and Leaves

Other cause of blocked drains is outside of your home, external drains can easily get clogged up by plants. A build-up of leaves and other debris can also enter the drain and cause issues like drain block, especially during the fall season. So, to prevent this make sure you keep the drain openings clean and tidy and make sure that they are covered with effective grills. 

Here are some helpful tips to maintain your drains and to prevent clogged drains.

1. Always use a drain strainer

This is a very inexpensive tool that will help in preventing debris from entering your drain line systems and causing a blockage.  Find a drain strainer that fits the opening of your sink and use it to collect food scraps. 

2. Avoid pouring grease or oil down the drain:

Never pour hot fat down the kitchen sink. The fat will cool down, congeal, and set in the pipes. The best approach is to let fats cool in a container and place the solid fat into the compost bin.

3. Avoid putting foods through your disposal:

 If you have a garbage disposal, you don’t need to worry as much about food scraps. However, there are a handful of foods such as bones, eggshells, coffee grinds, pasta, potato peels, etc, that can cause problems for garbage disposals and lead to blockages in your kitchen sink

4. Perform weekly deep cleaning with salt, baking soda, and vinegar:

For this deep cleaning method you can combine 1/2 cup of salt with 1/2 cup of baking soda and pour this down the drain. Follow this with 1⁄2 cup of white vinegar, and wait 15 minutes. Then pour 8 cups of hot water down the drain to rinse it out.

If the clogs still persist, call Wrench it up drain experts’ team for deep drain cleaning and drain snaking services.

Call us on (416) 800-5050

COVID-19 Update: In this critical time of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are taking extra efforts to ensure health and safety of our customers, technicians and community as we continue providing 24/7 plumbing services. Learn more about COVID-19 updates and safety measures at Wrench it up.