Solving Common Drainage Issues in Commercial Buildings: Identifying and Fixing the Problem

By Robbie Buckingham Mar1,2023

Commercial buildings can face problems with their drainage systems that can range from minor inconveniences to major disasters. Regularly inspecting and maintaining the system is key in order to ensure that it is running properly and safely, both for employees and customers.

Here are some of the most common problems that can occur in commercial buildings:

Food, Fat, Grease and Debris Blockages

Drain blockages are a very common problem for commercial buildings, particularly for restaurants, coffee shops and so on. When food or other debris becomes lodged in pipes, water can no longer flow freely and may start to back up, causing an unpleasant smell. In fast-paced restaurants and cafes which supply a lot of food and therefore require a lot of washing up, blockages from sinks and dishwashers can be a recurring problem. In more serious cases, the blockage may also lead to flooding or burst pipe. If you suspect that you have a blockage, it is important to act quickly in order to avoid any further damage. The best way to remove a blockage is to use a plunger or a drain snake. If these methods do not work, you will need to call a professional plumber to assess the problem.

Blocked Toilets

In the privacy of our own homes, only a handful of people use the bathroom on a daily basis and we are much more conscious of maintaining a standard of hygiene in our own space. Public or shared toilets do not receive the same care and consideration, as people will liberally flush paper, nappies and sanitary towels down the toilet without a second thought. For a commercial setting, a blocked toilet can be just as unpleasant for guests to visit as employees, especially for the unlucky person who has to try to release a blocked toilet. Recurring toilet blockages could signal that there is a blockage within the pipe system under your premises, caused by a more long-term build-up of matter. A professional plumber will be able to investigate the root cause of this issue, restoring your bathrooms to working order.

Hard Water Damage

Hard water can put a massive strain on all industrial premises, from construction sites to coffee shops. The minerals present in hard water build up over time and take residency in parts of your appliances and heating systems, like on heating elements inside your boiler, reducing its efficiency over time. Depending on the type of equipment your business requires, hard water can also damage and reduce its effectiveness. For example, hard water can wreak havoc on expensive coffee machines, as a build-up of scale inside pipes and filters can permanently damage equipment.

Burst Underground Pipes

Most commercial premises are rented or pre-owned, meaning the pipes and infrastructure surrounding your space has been used before, most likely for 30+ years. This means you are probably dealing with pipes and wastewater systems which are decades old, perhaps already weakened by consistent use. With intensive use, the pipes and fixings over time will naturally degrade and need repairing. In a bigger building, the more pipelines and the chance for an issue to arise there will be.

Sewer Odours

One of the most common drainage issues premises will face is unpleasant smells emerging from drains or air ducts. Sometimes drainage problems can cause the backtracking of wastewater, meaning water (and all of the debris within it) becomes stagnant, releasing a horrible smell. This could also be caused by defective ground grading, in which sewage lines have been incorrectly laid, meaning there is a lack of gravity pulling the water in the direction it needs to flow. Either way, this will require the attention of a professional to find the source of the problem or blockage, ensuring water drains smoothly.

It is important to hire a professional plumber who has experience and knowledge in dealing with common drainage issues in commercial buildings. They will be able to quickly identify the problem and provide an effective solution that prevents future issues. A good plumber will be able to advise on preventative measures to keep the drainage system running smoothly, such as the experts from London property maintenance experts Aspect. They support multi-site customers and commercial properties experiencing common drainage issues in commercial buildings.

Identifying and fixing common drainage issues in commercial buildings is essential to maintaining a healthy and safe environment for employees and customers. By hiring a professional plumber and practicing preventative maintenance, you can avoid costly and time-consuming drainage issues and keep your commercial building running smoothly.

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