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Common Causes of Clogged Drains

Common Causes of Clogged Drains

At some point in time, everyone encounters a clogged drain. Sometimes it’s just a minor clog that results in a barely noticeable slowing of the drain. Other times, the clog is complete and the drain won’t empty at all. A slow drain may not seem much of an urgent issue, but, if left unaddressed, it will eventually turn into a major clog.

Major clogs can cause severe damage to your pipes and can even result in dangers like disease, flooding and water damage in your home. Let’s look at the most common causes of clogged drains, how you can prevent them and where to go for help when the clog is more than you can deal with alone.

Common Causes of Clogged Drains

The most common causes of clogged drains involve the expected and the surprising. These include hair, dirt, food, small objects, roots, minerals, toilet paper, and even soap. Let’s take a look at each more closely.


Probably the most common clog encountered in showers, hair can bind to grease and other substances and back up your drain. Using a drain guard can catch the hair and stop it from going down in the first place, which will prevent clogs. Just be sure to clean out your drain guard after each shower.


Is it any surprise that dirt can clog up your drain? After all, when you wash, the dirt, skin oil, and other contaminants you’re removing from your body have to go somewhere. The best way to prevent this kind of clog, if you can, is to rinse off outside before actually washing inside.


Much like dirt, the food you wash off of your dishes has to go somewhere. Whether you hand-wash or use a dishwasher, all those food particles go down the drain, and they can often bind together and result in clogs. Instead of just rinsing all your food off down the sink, scrape it into the trash, or better yet, set up a compost bin for your gardening!

Small Objects

Everyone’s heard a story about someone accidentally losing their wedding ring down the drain. Small objects that go down can wreak havoc on your pipes. Never flush anything down the drain that’s not supposed to go down.

Tree Roots

Tree roots are of a concern mostly to your drainage pipes coming out of your basement, under your driveway and other areas of your home’s exterior. Additionally, exterior pipes that spring leaks are like a magnet for tree roots, which can snake their way into the pipes themselves and cause major damage, as well as be very complicated to fix.


If you have hard water, minerals can build up and create deposits that narrow your pipes, eventually causing clogs. A water softener in your home is one way to deal with this; otherwise, you’ll need regular descaling and sediment removal to keep your pipes open and flowing.

Toilet Paper

Toilet paper can clog up your drain and back up your toilet if you use too much. A good old-fashioned plunger can often clear these clogs; if that doesn’t work, you may need professional help.


This may be shocking, but soap buildup can also create clogs. Traditional soaps are often made with fat, which can leave a residue called soap scum that clogs your pipes and stains your fittings. Making smart choices in soap can help to alleviate this risk.

Finding Help With Clogged Drains

These are just a few of the things that can be causes of clogged drains. If you find you have a drain clog that’s too tough to clear yourself, don’t just dump chemicals down — you could do more harm than good. Call on a professional to safely remove the clog and free up your drains once more. If you’re in Henderson, NV, that means calling Village Plumbing. Get in touch with us for help clearing your drains today.


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