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Common plumbing problems
Most common plumbing problems

It’s one of those things we all take for granted – our plumbing. For a plumbing concern to rear its ugly head every now and then is completely normal, particularly as our homes get older. Many of these problems are easily handled by yourself and your trusted plunger. But other problems are more serious and need specialised solutions.

So if you suspect you have a plumbing problem, don’t panic! Check out our FAQ page for a quick run-down of the ‘symptoms’ of some of the most common plumbing problems. Knowing when to call a professional will save you money in the long run, as neglecting a serious issue could require more extensive, and expensive, solutions later on.


Blocked drains and blocked toilets are common plumbing problems. You know that lovely shower you take every day? Your hair and skin leaves a lot of residue in the pipes, which eventually builds up. The same happens when oils, fats and food are washed down the kitchen sink. Foreign objects are also sometimes flushed down the sewage system, causing blockages.

If you suspect a drain is blocked, check that the stopper is fully open and free of hair, food and debris. If the stopper isn’t the problem, then the drainpipe is probably clogged. Try a plunger and chemical drain cleaner – our specialised products quickly dissolve all organic obstructions including roots, sanitary pads, even rags. Or check out some educational how-to videos here for how to handle bigger blockages.

The same goes for toilets – any foreign object that is flushed down the toilet could result in a blockage. You’ll recognise a blockage when you see the water rise up in the bowl and even overflow. Turn off the water, grab your plunger and climb in there. You’ll know the blockage has moved when the water level in the toilet bowl returns to normal.

But as always – if this all seems a bit daunting, you’re welcome to call Drain Surgeon. With more than 30 years’ experience, we are the ultimate experts in unblocking drains and we’re on call 24/7.

Solving the problem of a blocked toilet or drain really starts by avoiding it. Do not flush any foreign objects down your toilet. Even tampon applicators and earbuds marketed as ‘flushable’ can cause problems. And if something falls in the toilet accidentally (we’ve all done the phone-in-the-back-pocket shuffle) – fish it out, don’t flush it down. Plumbing problems Plumbing problems


Leaking pipes and taps are another common plumbing problem in your home, and often unavoidable. Plumbing problems

Like any structure in your home, your pipes will eventually show signs of wear and tear, particularly when washers rip, move or harden. These kinds of leaks will most likely happen at the joints. To deal with the problem – turn off the main water supply and make temporary repairs to stop the leak and prevent water damage, then call Drain Surgeon for a more permanent solution.

Dripping taps aren’t an emergency. But as any South African knows, they can add a significant cost to your monthly utilities account. You can also run into fines when water restrictions are in place. Slow down the wear on your taps by opening and closing them gently and by avoiding excessive pressure on the handles. As mentioned, a good rule of thumb is to handle small issues when they pop up to avoid them becoming bigger concerns. So if you’re not comfortable with dismantling your tap or replacing it, rather call us. At Drain Surgeon, no job is too deep, too dark, or too dirty.


You’ve come home from a relaxing holiday to find your soggy ceiling laying on your floor. Or you expect a lovely hot shower, and instead, get blasted by ice-cold water. Or your overflow just dumped 25 litres of boiling water onto your roses.

Dripping water, watermarks on your ceiling, high electricity bills and weird noises coming from your roof could all be signs that your geyser is faulty. If your geyser is overheating, open all the hot water taps to relieve the overheated geyser. Turn off the gas or electric supply, and let the taps run until cold water flows from them. Check your geyser temperature, which should be between 55 degrees (summer) and 65 degrees (winter). It’s critical that a geyser is installed correctly, so call us to make any necessary repairs to for example the thermostat and pressure safety valve. This is one instance where you do not want to save money by attempting to do the job yourself. Many insurance companies will also not pay out damages if the geyser was not professionally serviced and installed.


Old and new houses can suffer from low water pressure. This problem can also fluctuate, even disappear and reappear from time to time.

Low water pressure can result in the main water supply, in which case your neighbour will also be affected. Loss of water pressure can also be the result of a leaking pipe in your home, or because of the build-up of minerals in your pipes, taps or showerheads. The build-up slows the water flow, resulting in low pressure. If you think build-up is the problem, start with a showerhead or tap where you have low pressure. Unscrew the end on the tap or showerhead and clean thoroughly. You can also soak in vinegar overnight. However, if the water pressure suddenly decreases, and you can’t pinpoint the cause of the problem, it could mean you have a pipe leak. Now would be a good time to contact Drain Surgeon.

On the opposite end of the scale, high water pressure can often cause noisy pipes ranging from loud hammering sounds to high-pitched squeaks. The cause may be loose pipes, water-logged air chambers, or high water pressure. Anchoring exposed pipes is often a simple and effective solution to this annoying problem.


Drain Surgeon is the largest plumbing group in the Southern hemisphere. We will give you quick and professional service no matter what your plumbing and drainage needs may be.

Call us today and our plumbing team will take care of it – any time of the day or night. We’ve been in the business for a long time and we’ve seen it all, so you can enjoy peace of mind in knowing that one of our expert plumbers will be with you soon. 

At Drain Surgeon we only contract security-screened plumbers and electricians, so you can rest assured that your home and family are in safe hands when we perform work on your premises.

Download the app here and save R150 on your first job. And check out our testimonials here to hear what other happy customers have to say. We hope to add your testimonial there next!

Why call Drain Surgeon? We offer all general and specialised plumbing services, 24/7.

  • We only contract security-screened plumbers and electricians, so you can feel at ease when we work on your premises.
  • We are on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Your call will always be answered by our helpful staff – never an answering machine.
  • You do not pay extra for services outside office hours.
  • We will keep you informed throughout the process.
  • Our technicians will always be professional, highly competent and wear our recognisable uniform.
  • The Drain Surgeon vehicles carry all the equipment to complete most jobs immediately.
  • We leave all work areas clean and tidy.
  • We always aim to solve your problem quickly and professionally.

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