You might not realise you have a problem with your drains until the problem has got so serious that it’s going to take a lot of time, resources and money to put right.

Drainage problems can be a hidden cost, partly because the problems can build up beneath ground, and partly because these problems are often cumulative.
A drain survey can help identify drainage problems early; and it can provide an accurate means of drainage detection to provide an effective diagnosis to allow to work to commence as soon as possible.

What’s Going on Underground?

There are various things that can go wrong with a property’s drains. Some will be down to damage, some deterioration over time. There may also be historic issues with the drainage network if building work, extensions or renovations have disturbed it.

Collapsed or broken drains may not be immediately obvious, but a drain leaking into the ground can lead to building subsidence, as the water gradually erodes the ground around foundations.

Tree roots can cause drain damage, as they are drawn towards the moisture coming off the drain. Eventually the roots can penetrate the drain, or cause movement that causes it to misalign.

Unfortunately, drains can also attract rodents, and lead to infestation in a property.
Misuse of drains by putting the wrong things down them leads to blockages, sometimes over a prolonged period of time. Fat and grease build-up in drains is a common cause of blocked drains.

Exposing Drainage Problems

There is a way to see inside drains, and this is by sending a CCTV camera down into them. CCTV drain surveys make the detection and diagnosis of drainage problems that much more straightforward.

The camera picks up faults in the system as well as helping us to put together an accurate, up to date picture of the drainage network. We can supplement this process with sonar drain tracing and dye testing, which means we avoid having to undertake costly excavations just to locate problem areas.
Think of a drain survey as an investment in your drains and, ultimately, your property. And it can save you money: by spotting problems earlier on, which otherwise might be more disruptive; and by making the whole process of remedial work faster, more efficient and less disruptive. These efficiency savings we can pass on to you, the customer.

If you only suspect you have a drainage issue, don’t delay. Contact Drainage Consultants to arrange your drain survey.

Do you assume that your property is automatically connected to the public sewer system? You probably imagine that public sewer connections are the responsibility of utilities companies – large scale work that is not to do with you and your home.

Have you heard of a lateral drain? This is the drain outside your property boundary, connecting it to the public sewer network. At one time, lateral drains were the responsibility of property owners, which led to many complex ownership issues when problems occurred, as more than one property would feed into the lateral drain.

Since 2011, sewerage companies took on responsibility for these lateral drains, and other private sewers.

However, the last piece of the puzzle is your own connection to the public sewer, within your property boundary. This bit is your responsibility.

Your Public Sewer Connection

If you own a recently built property, or one that has been redeveloped, you may need to arrange to have it connected to the public sewer network.

Drains and sewers carrying your household waste are your responsibility, either as a homeowner or landlord. This involves you applying for a connection, to comply with Section 106 of the Water Industry Act.

What should you do to get this work carried out? The simplest way is to use a qualified contractor to do the work. Once the work is complete, the Water Authority will issue you with a Certificate of Satisfactory Inspection – all the more reason to ensure that whoever carries out the work is fully qualified and experienced to do so.

Drainage Consultants specialises in all aspects of drainage work, including public sewer connections. This can involve a variety of methods, such as adding an extra section of drain to connect your property to the public sewer; we might need to use a y-piece junction to connect to a curved pipe. Whatever the job demands, we have the professional means to tackle it efficiently and thoroughly.

You’re responsible for your property’s sewer connection but we can complete the work on your behalf, ensuring that your connection is fully compliant with the Water Authority’s conditions.

Contact Drainage Consultants today for more details about public sewer connections – what your responsibilities are and how we can help you.

Drainage issues are commonplace, which is why we work hard to fix them as soon as we can, because we understand that no one likes disruption. However, in some cases, a drainage investigation will be all the more urgent, depending on the location of the problem and who’s involved.


Trapped by the Overflow

Imagine being elderly and being trapped inside your own property. We were called to a house where an overflowing manhole was causing serious issues.

In this case, the location of the manhole, close to the front garden of the house, meant that the elderly resident was prevented from leaving by the disruption caused.

Clearly this was causing distress alongside the inconvenience. No one wants to feel besieged in their own home.

We soon worked out that whatever was causing the blockage outside the property was somewhere downstream of it, probably three metres or so. The next step was to locate the source of the problem and from there, work out how to fix it.



Our drainage investigation centred on the drain inspection chamber further downstream. It was clogged up with disposable wipes that had obviously been flushed down the toilet.

The thing with wipes is that some brands clearly state that they can be easily flushed away, but a drainage inspection will tell a very different story.

We cleaned out the inspection chamber and washed it down. And we carried out high pressure water jetting to completely clear the drain leading from the manhole outside the front of the property.

It’s always important to be really sure that the drain is completely clear, so we then tested the gully and pipeline by flushing water through it but at a normal, domestic flow-rate. This was testing the system under normal conditions and it was okay.


We can’t tell you how relieved the person in the house was – not only because we’d cleared the blocked manhole, but because they were now once again free to come and go through their own front door.


The motto of this story? Don’t take wipes for granted, because whatever convenience they offer might just be offset by the massive inconvenience of a blocked drain.

Sinkholes seem to be on the increase in the UK and some of them are the result of human activity as well as persistently wet weather. Periods of prolonged heavy rain or flooding are most likely to expose these holes, when water gradually dissolves around soluble bedrock, but also the sudden drainage of groundwater can make them happen. Alongside these natural causes, deterioration of manmade, underground sewage pipes can also cause sinkholes.

Clearly the appearance of a sinkhole is an obvious visual clue to there being something wrong, but a drain survey can have a part to play in ensuring that drainage networks don’t reach the stage of deterioration where sinkholes can occur.

Smaller, but Inconvenient All the Same

Although sinkholes in the UK are generally not more than a few dozen feet deep, they are, nonetheless, an inconvenience, and can be an indicator that drainage or sewage systems are in decline.

Sinkholes can open up nearby large building developments because of water being prevented soaking into rock and instead running off into surrounding land – another example where poor drainage is a big contributory factor.

Rapid Response

A drain survey is an essential tool in tackling drainage issues because it can help ascertain issues before they cause serious disruption. Drain surveys also help with a rapid response in the detection and diagnosis of drain problems, which is a real benefit if things have got to the sinkhole stage.

Sonar drain tracing and CCTV cameras are essential components of the state-of-the-art drain survey. They minimise the environmental impact while providing a detailed view of what’s going on underground.

When we undertake a drain survey on behalf of our clients, we thoroughly assess the local drainage network using this technology. Where we’ve come across drainage problems, or deterioration in the network, we provide a clear set of recommended actions, based on a full report, which includes a DVD of the CCTV footage taken.


A drain survey isn’t simply a nice to have added extra: it’s essential in dealing with drainage issues, whether preventing them or fixing them.

A drain survey is a diagnostic tool, but it also is an important measure in preventing the worst from happening. It can give reassurance to insurers and property owners that the local drainage network is working, and it can provide crucial information should an insurance claim arise. So when it comes to buildings insurance, the drain survey has a key role to play.


Are You Covered?

Faulty drains can have a serious affect on a building, with, potentially, complete failure of the drainage system and subsidence, damaging the foundations. You can be covered for this providing you have ensured the regular maintenance of your drainage system. But making a successful claim can be something of an uphill struggle. There are frequently a substantial number of issues to address and you may have many technical questions around drain failure and drainage to answer.

The drain survey can, therefore, be of real assistance. It will give you the right level of technical information about your drainage system to be able to successfully submit a claim under your buildings insurance.

It’s important that you have real substance to your claim, and the drain survey will be able to provide this, and satisfy your insurer’s demands for information.


What Will a Drain Survey Do?

A drain survey will be able to locate trouble spots in drainage systems: areas where the pipework is degraded, or where tree roots have caused damage. If there are, or have been, blockages, the drain survey will pinpoint where, and indicate contributing factors to damaged drains.

When it comes to deciding what remedial action to take, the drain survey will be able to give you a clear indication what will be required.

We look at all the survey data we’ve gathered, including the actual CCTV footage, and it allows us to put forward an accurate quotation for any essential work we’d need to do on your behalf to put things right. All this is essential for a buildings insurance claim.

If your insurer requires a building subsidence report, we can provide this, along with the full drain survey report. We’re in the business of detection and diagnosis, and experts at carrying out remedial and preventative work. Let our drain survey be your starting point to getting things sorted out.

Can a CCTV Drain Survey Help Your Business?

You might not think of drains as being essential to your business, but it’s more than likely that they are. In fact, if you do run a business, there is likely to come a time when you have issues with your drainage. Drains have to face a lot of wear and tear, and some drains are very old. If you’re having a refurbishment or fit-out you might need to ensure your existing drain network will be up to the changes you’ve got planned. This is why a CCTV drain survey can be a real business asset.


What is the True Cost of Your Drains?

What would be the cost implications of not maintaining your drains? For example, if you’re a retailer then blocked drains are going to have some sort of noticeable impact on how you conduct your business. The smell alone may well put your customers off. Also, there are serious health and safety implications for businesses with drains that aren’t functioning properly.

You may be faced with a situation where something is wrong but you don’t know what it is. It may be that your drainage issues are there but not yet actively disruptive. The sensible thing to do is to act and not wait, because putting things off is only going to result in the problem becoming much, much worse, and therefore costing you more to fix.

Say your business is moving to new premises and you want to have it thoroughly refurbished first. Think about checking the existing drainage network to ensure that whatever your plans, you won’t end up with a bill to fix utilities you’ve disrupted or damaged in carrying them out.

Is a CCTV Drain Survey the Answer?

How do you find out the state of your drains without major disruption? The answer is using state of the art CCTV technology to explore the drainage network. Think of it as part of your business planning. Banks and building societies often insist that a drain survey takes place before they release funds to businesses relocating.

Our survey will provide you with all the details you need and, should you need to take action, we’ll have the right plan for you. We can provide a same-day quote and we offer a quick turnaround for your drainage report, based on the CCTV footage we take.

Act now, and ensure a smoother future for your business with a CCTV drain survey.

No one likes disturbance, least of all when it involves your home or property. The worry when it comes to drains is that inspecting them will then result in contractors digging things up and leaving a trail of disruption. However, it may surprise you when we tell you how hassle-free, and careful, a drainage investigation can be.

Why Have a Drainage Investigation?

In an ideal world, your drains would function well without any trouble. But like many things, they are subject to wear and tear, and damage over time. You might encounter the symptoms of a damaged drain without realising what they mean. For example, interior damp patches, or outdoor pools of water gathering even when there has been no rainfall, are signs that all is not well with your drains.

Now these symptoms might be something you feel you can live with, but like suffering nagging pain from a persistent injury, they are sure indicators that you’ll need to take action eventually. Generally the rule is the sooner the better. Drainage problems, if left alone too long, are likely to escalate into something seriously disruptive.

Even when the fault doesn’t immediately affect you, such as happens sometimes with a collapsed drain, the long-term effects can be catastrophic. Subsidence, for example, results from wastewater persistently leaking into the surrounding ground from a damaged pipe.

How Trouble-free is It?

We employ various non-invasive methods for a drainage investigation. A CCTV drain survey can provide us with valuable visual data about your drains and when combined with sonar drain tracing, builds up a comprehensive picture of the drainage network.

We may follow this detective work with some preliminary excavations to expose the problem, much like exploratory surgery. The key is for us to be able to accurately diagnose the drainage problem before committing to a full programme of work.

By following a proper investigative and diagnostic process, we can usually minimise the amount of disruption you’re likely to face when it comes to taking remedial action.

We make our drainage investigations as non-disruptive as possible, and we work to ensure your drains are functioning the way they should. Contact Drainage Consultants today to find out more about our services.

Your property may not be connected to the public sewer network, if it’s a recent development. You might think of public sewers as utilities on a grand scale, which don’t have anything to do with you. However, it is your responsibility, when it comes to public sewer connections, to arrange to have your property connected.


Who is Responsible for What?


Sewerage companies are responsible for the public sewers. They have certain rights of access, covering private gardens where sewer pipes cross. This means if the sewerage company needs to do work on the public sewer where it falls on your land, they would normally take care of this.


But the drains and private sewers carrying household waste are the responsibility of the householder or landlord whose property it is. It is the private individual’s responsibility to arrange the connection of the local network to the public sewer. Where the household waste connects with the public sewer marks the boundary, and indicates where the individual’s responsibility begins.


How Do You Apply for a Public Sewer Connection?


To connect your property to the public sewerage network, you have to apply for a connection in order to comply with Section 106 of the Water Industry Act. The reason for this is to safeguard the integrity of the public sewerage system by ensuring there are no unauthorised connections to it, releasing anything into it, which might disrupt or damage it.


The most straightforward way of doing this to find a qualified contractor who will do the work for you. In this way, you retain control over the work in terms of when it happens. Make sure you have all the work planned in advance, with proper plans submitted by your contractor on your behalf to your utilities provider.


We have the specialist professional experience to carry out this work for you quickly, efficiently and with the minimum of fuss. We’ll complete the necessary certification and make arrangements for the Water Authority to inspect our work. It’s your responsibility, but we can make it trouble-free for you.


Contact Drainage Consultants today to find out how we can help with public sewer connections.

If your drains are in a poor condition this can cause you serious problems, even if, at present, you’re not experiencing any actual inconvenience. Damaged or degraded drains are a disaster waiting to happen. A most effective means of discovering what’s going in in your drains, and what you need to do about it, is a CCTV drain survey.


Don’t Put Health and Wealth at Risk

If you’re a landlord or a business owner, poor drainage is a liability. There are health and safety issues where drains are concerned, and duty of care you have a duty of care to your tenants, or your employees. Also, if you have a business you can end up facing unscheduled downtime from drainage issues, particularly if your property floods as a result.

Furthermore, if you run a shop, or a business where customers or clients visit you on-site, persistent foul-smelling drains aren’t going to do much for your professional reputation.

In short, drainage problems are costly for a whole variety of reasons, some beyond the actual cost of fixing the problem.


How a CCTV Drain Survey Can Save the Day

A CCTV drain survey is a way of detecting any weaknesses or problem areas in your drains. It also indicates how best to remedy them. These surveys are cost effective, and they allow us to precisely assess what sort of condition your drains are in.

You may find the symptoms of a blocked or damaged drain are at first little more than an inconvenience, but these symptoms, if left undiagnosed, will more than likely grow into to something much more serious. The CCTV drain survey will reveal any weaknesses or problem areas that are likely to become seriously troublesome if left untreated.


Don’t be put off by the thought of investing in an investigation: the amount you spend now on a CCTV drain survey is likely to save you money in the future, and help you avoid the inconvenience and anxiety of your drain problems escalating into a full-blown crisis.

We all know about the sensational aspects of CCTV exposure, from bad behaviour to criminal activity and beyond. But what might a CCTV drain survey uncover about you, should you need one?

What Goes Down the Drain But Shouldn’t?

The thing about drain is, they’re so convenient. You can flush any number of things down the sink or toilet and away they go, out of sight, out of mind.
Or are they?

Drains are not meant to accommodate all and every kind of waste. Many items, if put down the drains, will simply clog them up, either through time, or almost immediately, depending on what they are.

An obvious culprit is cooking fat. If you pour grease from food straight down the drain it doesn’t simply flow away, even if you run the tap. It gradually coats the inside of your drains, narrowing them and making them less efficient. Eventually, if you’re unlucky, this can congeal into a fatberg, which is as unpleasant as it sounds, with potentially dire consequences for your drainage.

Also, food waste and scraps can build up in drains, particularly food that expands with water, such as pasta. Coffee grounds are another cause of blocked kitchen drains.

Hair is another one of the usual suspects. We can’t do much about hair, it’s just something we’ve got, and it sheds in the shower and bath and end up going
down into the drain. Enough hair will clog a drain if left untreated (the drain, not the hair).

Cotton balls, swabs and pads frequently head drainwards. These items are not designed to be disposable in this way, and will eventually clog up the drains if you insist on flushing them down the loo.

There are plenty of disposable products that are just not always as disposable down the drain, such as baby wipes. It’s also worth noting that the performance of disposable products may be dependent on the actual state of your drains in the first place. So check before you flush. This is true of that particularly thick, luxurious toilet paper that appears so tempting in commercials and on the supermarket shelf.

A number of what supermarkets refer to as “unexpected items” also find their way down drains, such as items of clothing, packaging and children’s toys.

A final health warning: cigarette butts can also block drains.


CCTV reveals all

Whatever is blocking your drain, a CCTV drain survey is one way of detecting the cause of the problem.

A word of warning, however: whereas CCTV is invaluable in finding things out, and will certainly come in handy in detecting drainage problems, it may reveal some of your household habits, when the various things that ended up down your drains are captured on camera.


Don’t be put off though: we’re here to help, and anyway, you get to keep your own DVD footage of the CCTV drain survey, if only to remind you not to put the same things down the drain again.