Blocked Drains: The Health Risks

A blocked drain is a real problem for a homeowner. Not only can a blocked drain be a symptom of an underlying structural problem, or the cause of an unpleasant issue like water resurgence, but a clogged drain can also carry substantial health risks too.

Blocked household drains tend to occur within the areas of toilet, bathroom, or sink plumbing, but regardless of the clogged pipe or drain the result is the accumulation of waste water. It is this stagnant water that can cause health problems, and that fact alone means that itís well worth getting your drain unblocked as soon as possible. Here are a few of the common health complaints that are associated with blocked drains.

Dirty Water

When water goes down a drain, it is usually dirty to begin with. When it then sits within a blocked drain for a prolonged time, itís only going to get worse. Blocked toilet drains are perhaps the worst offenders in this respect, as backed-up water from such drains can become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria, and this in turn can lead to disease. Even initially uncontaminated water can encourage bacteria like Legionella when it stands idle, so the health concerns from dirty water are very real.

Bad Odours

A blocked drain will usually smell, and this in itself can create a fair few health concerns. Even if the odour isnít innately toxic, being exposed to bad odours stresses us, makes us more anxious, causes symptoms like headaches or poor moods, and can even make us feel more tired, and this will, of course, only get worse the longer a drain is left. Bad odours might not be life-threatening, but that doesnít mean they arenít a problem.


Blocked drains can irritate or exacerbate existing problems that a person may have. For example, asthma sufferers frequently have more regular attacks when they are forced into proximity with a blocked drain,