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How To Remove Any Bathtub Drain In 11 Steps

How To Remove Any Bathtub Drain In 11 Steps

Do you cherish a daily bath? You’re not alone, because almost no one could possibly argue that it’s not relaxing, great for a good night’s sleep, and just perfect for that little bit of alone time that we all love. But if you’re faced with the task of needing to know how to remove the bathtub drain, that’s where things get a whole lot more stressful – because there are so many types of bath drains, including:

  • Trip lever
  • Toe-tap
  • Lift and turn
  • Pop-up
  • Push and pull
  • Flip-it
  • Pres-Flo
  • Grid drain & many, many more.

How to remove tub drains of every type

At the end of the day, learning how to remove specific bathtub drain assemblies depends on how old the tub is – and who manufactured it. And the oldest baths in Australia date all the way back to the 19th century! That’s a lot of tubs!

So if you’ve been browsing for the most generic way to unscrew bathtub drain assemblies all across our sunburned land and come up empty-handed, we hear you. And that’s why we’ve put our heads together here at Ryan Old Plumbing to come up with a step-by-step process for removing tub drain components – no matter what they are – to complete the process that we know you just want to get done in the easiest and fastest possible way. So here goes!

Removing bathtub drain components in 11 steps

Dealing with a hopelessly blocked drain? Drain assembly worn out? Just updating the look or functionality of your existing tub? Sure, a plumber could certainly help. But if you want to know roughly what they get up to so you can also learn how to remove bathtub drain assemblies, here’s the basic process:

1. Got your tools?

You’re going to need a few things, including:

  • Screwdrivers
  • Drain removal tool
  • Adjustable pliers
  • Pipe wrench
  • Plumber’s putty/thread seal tape
  • New bathtub drain assembly.

Haven’t got everything? Don’t worry, you can still proceed.

2. Prepare the area

Make sure the area around the bathtub is clear of anything that may disturb you. At the same time, put a towel down to catch any water/debris, and put on some gloves to look after your hands.

3. Remove the drain cover

Can you actually see the drain cover? It will probably come off with a simple tool like a screwdriver, but you may need to unscrew something as well.

4. Access the drain assembly

Do you also need to remove an overflow cover plate or the access panel underneath the bath? It should just be a matter of removing some screws.

5. Loosen the assembly

Next up, grab those pliers or wrenches to grip the assembly firmly and unloosen it in a (normally) anti-clockwise direction. Be patient and gentle but firm enough to fully unscrew it – and if you struggle at this step, you probably need a drain removal tool.

6. Remove the assembly

It should now be a matter of lifting the assembly out of the drain hole. Feel free to do a bit of wiggling or pulling, because debris or sealant may be making it a little tricky.

7. Clean & prepare

Do you see any debris or residue in or around the drain hole? If so, clean it thoroughly with a rag – or something a little stronger if it’s stubborn.

8. Install the new assembly

Wait ’til it’s dry, and then apply a layer of plumber’s putty around the threads of the new drain assembly. Carefully insert it into the hole, and then use your pliers or wrench to tighten it all up. Just be careful not to damage the assembly or tub by tightening it too much.

9. Reassemble

Did you remove an overflow cover plate or access panel earlier in this process? The time has come to re-attach them, making sure not to over-tighten.

10. Test

Your new drain assembly should now be in place, but turn the water back on to check. Do you see any leaks? If not, you’ve done a great job.

11. Cleanup

Tidy up, double-check the connections, wipe everything down – and go boil the kettle for a much-deserved coffee!

How to remove drain from tub the easy way

Just need an experienced, fully-licensed professional in bathtub drain removal to do it for you? At Ryan Old Plumbing, we offer Brisbane & the Gold Coast the most professional, speedy and affordable bathroom plumbing service possible, with all the best goodies like upfront pricing, no-obligation quotes and 100% guaranteed workmanship – for life. Struggling with removing bathtub drain assembles? Stop right now and simply give Ryan Old Plumbing a shout – and we’ll be right there!

How To Use A Drain Snake In 5 Easy Steps

How To Use A Drain Snake In 5 Easy Steps

Drain hopelessly blocked? Already pounded it with a plunger? Poured hot water + baking soda down there? Tried a caustic chemical cleaner? Straightened-out coat hanger simply not doing the trick? It sounds like it’s time to try one more thing before reaching for the number of a local plumber nearby: a drain snake.

Wait: a what snake? A drain what? Not to be confused with the professional plumber’s heavy-duty, motorised version – the powerful drain auger – a drain snake is a cheap, hand-held device you can grab at any decent hardware store to help unblock a drain. Visibly, they take a few different forms, but the working end of any drain snake is basically the same: a thin, flexible, coiled, elbow grease-powered auger that is hand-cranked deep into your drain to mash up whatever’s blocking it.

But let’s not obsess about what any one particular drain snake looks like, because they even have alternate names – including plumbers eel. Whether it’s a plumbing snake or a plumbing eel, how you get yours to smash up all that hair, oil, toilet paper, soap, scum, food and other drain gunk is basically the same. So without further ado, let’s dive into how to use a drain snake.

Luckily, using a plumbing snake is super easy:

1. Push the end in

At the end of the coil is the critical component – the auger. That’s what is going to chew through those wads of stubborn, compact drain gunk. You may need to take the drain cover off to access the drain, but once you do, it’s just a matter of pushing the auger into the opening.

2. Turn the handle

Your drain snake will feature a wound-up ‘snake’ of coil that is housed in a drum. You unwind that snake by turning the handle in the appropriate direction. Once you start winding, the snake starts slithering into the drain.

3. Feel resistance?

If the drain is clear, the snake should slither down there without too much trouble as you wind. Once you feel any significant sort of resistance, that could very well be the feeling of the auger end hitting whatever has clogged up your drain.

4. Keep winding – carefully

Now that the auger end is physically touching the blockage deep inside your plumbing pipe, keep winding just a little bit. Hopefully, the auger has now inserted itself into the blockage and already started to mash it all up. And even if it’s a solid object – like a barbie doll’s head shoved down there by your toddler – the rotating action could entangle the auger head around the object so that it can be yanked out.

5. Wind, unwind, wind, unwind

With a little bit of luck, the drain snake has already done its thing and your drain is flowing again. If not, this technique is highly effective:

  • Wind the drain snake through the blockage
  • Wind the drain snake the other way, back through the blockage
  • Repeat
  • Keep repeating.

Be mindful that if you feel too much resistance while you’re doing this, you could actually be mushing up not just the blockage, but your plumbing pipes themselves – so exercise caution. But as you wind and unwind, you should feel that the blockage is gradually being broken up.

What if your drain snake didn’t work?

Still struggling with your hopelessly blocked drain? Don’t stress! The kind of drain snake you buy for a few bucks at the local hardware store simply can’t compete with the powerful, highly specialised (and extremely expensive) professional plumbing tools like CCTV plumbing cameras, high-pressure water jetters and motorised augers used by plumbers every day. It’s also possible that something more sinister is occurring down your drain – like corrosion, leaks, collapsed pipes and other complex problems.

The solution? The friendly team at Ryan Old Plumbing can rush an emergency plumber to your location 24/7 with a fully-stocked van to check out what’s gone wrong with your drain and put it right – stat! For upfront pricing, guaranteed workmanship and a free plumbing inspection, get in touch with the masters of Brisbane blocked drains & Gold Coast drain cleaning right here at Ryan Old Plumbing today.

How To Unblock A Drain Outside: A Step-by-step Guide

How To Unblock A Drain Outside: A Step-by-step Guide

If you have a blocked drain outside your home, it can be a major inconvenience and even lead to water damage. Fortunately, unblocking a drain outside is a task that you can often tackle yourself with the right tools and some patience. In this blog post, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide for unblocking an outdoor drain.

Before you start: Gather your tools and materials

Before you get started, you’ll need to gather a few tools and materials. You’ll need:

  • A pair of gloves
  • A drain snake or auger
  • A bucket
  • A broom
  • A hose
  • A pair of pliers

Step 1: Put on your gloves

Before you start trying to unblock the drain, it’s important to protect your hands. Drain water can be dirty and contain bacteria, so it’s a good idea to wear a pair of gloves to keep your hands clean.

Step 2: Locate inspection points

The first thing you should do when unblocking an outdoor drain is to find an access point. A sewer drain will have an overflow relief gully covered with a grate, while a stormwater inspection point will have a PVC cap you can unscrew. Both of these drain openings will give you a window to look inside the pipes and assess the blockage. There may be more than one access point, so you want to be above the blockage. Use a broom to remove any visible debris from around the drain access so you don’t accidentally push debris into the drain.

Step 3: Remove any visible debris

If you can see any obstruction, first remove any visible debris from the drain by hand. To do this, you’ll need a bucket and a pair of pliers. First, remove the drain cover and use the pliers to remove any visible debris, such as leaves or small sticks, from the drain. If the debris is too large to remove with the pliers, use your hands (with those trusty gloves on) to remove loose material.

Step 4: Flush the drain with a hose

After you’ve removed any visible debris from the drain, it’s a good idea to flush the drain with a hose to make sure it’s fully clear. To do this, attach the hose to an outdoor tap and turn the tap on full force. Direct the water into the drain, pushing the hose down close to the blockage and let it run for a few minutes to flush out any remaining debris.

Step 5: Use a drain snake or auger

If the hose doesn’t work, you can try using a drain snake or auger. A drain snake is a long, flexible rod with a spiral end that you can use to loosen and remove blockages in the drain. To use a drain snake, insert the end of the snake into the drain and turn the handle clockwise to loosen and remove any blockages. If you don’t have a drain snake, you can try using a plumbing auger, which is a long, flexible rod with a hook on the end. To use a plumbing auger, insert the auger into the drain and turn the handle clockwise to loosen and remove any blockages.

Step 6: Check the drain regularly

To prevent future blockages, it’s a good idea to check the drain regularly and remove any debris that has accumulated. This will help keep your drain flowing freely and prevent any future blockages.


Unblocking an outdoor drain can be a dirty and inconvenient task, but it’s something that you can often tackle yourself with the right tools and some patience. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you should be able to unblock your outdoor drain and get it flowing again.

If you need assistance with cleaning blocked drains, call on the drainage specialists at Ryan Old Plumbing. We can dispatch a Brisbane plumber, Logan plumber, Moreton Bay plumber, Ipswich plumber, Gold Coast plumber….we now cover most of southeast Queensland!

How French Drain Systems Work

How French Drain Systems Work

What is a french drain system?

A French drain system is a subsurface drainage system that is designed to remove excess water from an area. It consists of a trench that is filled with gravel and a perforated pipe, which is then covered with soil. The perforations in the pipe allow water to enter, and the gravel helps to filter out any debris. The water is then carried away through the pipe to a designated area, such as a storm drain or a dry well.

French drain systems in Brisbane are often used to prevent water from pooling in yards or basements, and they can also be used to protect foundations and prevent erosion. They are a popular choice for homeowners and contractors because they are relatively easy to install and maintain.

How Do French Drain Systems Work?

French drain systems work by using gravity to redirect excess water away from an area. When it rains or when water accumulates around a foundation, it flows into the perforated pipe in the French drain system. The pipe then carries the water away from the area through a slope or gradient. The gravel or rocks in the trench help to filter the water and prevent debris from clogging the pipe.

Benefits of French Drain Systems:

There are several benefits to using a French drain system for excess water management:

  • Prevents water damage: Excess water around foundations and other areas of a property can cause significant damage. A French drain system can prevent water from accumulating and causing damage to the property.
  • Reduces erosion: Excess water can also cause erosion, which can be damaging to landscaping and the overall appearance of a property. A French drain system can help to reduce erosion by redirecting the water away from the area.
  • Easy to install: French drain systems are relatively easy to install and can be done by homeowners or with the help of a professional.
  • Low maintenance: Once a French drain system is installed, it requires minimal maintenance. It is important to periodically check the pipe for clogs and to clear any debris that may have accumulated, but overall, French drain systems require very little maintenance.

Do you need a french drain installation? It may be that your poor backyard drainage is caused by something a blocked storm water drain, or your storm water drainage system is just not coping in heavy rain. To answer the question it’s best to have an inspection from a local plumber who can advise you on the best solution to drainage problems.

How to Install a French Drain System:

Installing a French drain system can be done by homeowners or with the help of a professional. Here are the steps for installing a French drain system:

  1. Determine the location for the French drain system. The trench should be dug around the perimeter of the area that needs drainage.
  2. Dig the trench. The trench should be about 18 inches deep and wide enough to accommodate the pipe and gravel or rocks.
  3. Place the perforated pipe in the bottom of the trench. The pipe should be placed on a slope or gradient to ensure that the water flows away from the area.
  4. Cover the pipe with gravel or rocks. The gravel or rocks should be placed around the pipe to help filter the water and prevent debris from clogging the pipe.
  5. Backfill the trench. Once the pipe and gravel or rocks are in place, the trench can be filled in with soil.


A French drain system is an effective solution for managing excess water around foundations and other areas of a property. It is a simple and low-maintenance solution that can prevent water damage and erosion. Installing a French drain system can be done by homeowners or with the help of a professional local plumber and is a relatively easy process.

Do you have excess water issues on your property? Considering installing a French drain system to keep your property safe and dry? Before you do anything, contact the specialist drain plumbers Brisbane and Gold Coast locals call on for the right advise that will save you time and money – Ryan Old Plumbing Services!

How To Get Rid Of Drain Flies In One Week

How To Get Rid Of Drain Flies In One Week

Spotted a few small flies in the bathroom? Think they might be sewer flies? Believe us: if they’re tiny, grey, their wings are round and they seem to just love your damp drains, you’ve already got a drain fly infestation on your hands. The good news is that learning how to get rid of drain flies is easy.

Small flies in the drains? You’ve got a drain fly problem!

Time, however, is of the essence – because as every day passes, another batch of eggs is likely to have hatched. And although drain flies won’t bite you, they will spread unhealthy drain and sewer muck – including harmful bacteria – all over the place. If you have asthma or allergies, drain or bathroom flies are likely to make your symptoms worse, while people have been known to contract diseases including myiasis and microfilaria from this annoying critter.

Furthermore, ignoring them could lead to nasty problems in your plumbing. Why? Remember what they eat? You could have a build-up of gunk about to choke your drain pipes which may mean you’ll need to call on a professional blocked drain cleaning service.

In other words, knowing how to get rid of drain flies Australia wide is rather important – so let’s dive straight into it with 5 easily actionable tips that could make a serious difference within just one week:

1. Clean the sink

When was the last time? If it’s been a while, just give your bathroom its normal thorough cleaning routine – but maybe pull out a pipe brush to give the inside of the drain a bit of a scrub. After a week, follow up with another thorough clean.

2. Use boiling water

Name two things that don’t mix: drain flies, and boiling hot water. Not only will they sizzle their way to drain fly heaven, but boiling water is also simply a great way to get rid of some of the drain muck that attracted them in the first place.

Pour the entire kettle down there, and then repeat it every day for a week.

3. Try baking soda

Baking soda is another key ingredient for unblocking a sink drain and regular drain maintenance – including saying Sayonara to drain flies. Mix up half a cup with another half a cup of salt, add a cup of white vinegar to the brew, and pour it all down. Let the concoction sizzle for a while before washing it all down with hot water.

Repeat the process after 3 or 4 days.

4. Should You try a commercial cleaner?

While the natural remedy above works a treat, there’s a number of drain chemicals on the supermarket shelf. They can work on organic material down there, plus your drain flies. However you need to use caution – not just because of what the chemicals can do to you but they can also damage pipes if not used properly.

5. Catch the stragglers

With all of that implemented regularly, you can check to see if there are any tough little Aussie drain flies left over by setting a trap for them. As they just love apple cider vinegar, add a little to a vessel that can then be sealed at the top with cling wrap. Poke some small holes in the top to let the critters in – and rest assured, they won’t be finding their way out.

Leave the trap out for a full week, replenishing the bait if necessary.

Ryan Old Plumbing can help with any drain issue

At the end of the day, the reason you’re looking into how to get rid of drain flies is because the state of your drains attracted them. We’re talking about moist, stagnant, organic matter and debris that is simply delicious to drain flies – and like a hand-written invitation for them to call your drains their favourite breeding ground.

If you think your drain fly-prone drains and pipes need some professional attention, call the friendly local plumbers near you in Brisbane and the Gold Coast at Ryan Old Plumbing. We have all the equipment, products, knowledge and hands-on experience to tackle any plumbing problem whatsoever. Get in touch today to make a booking, guaranteeing quality workmanship, upfront pricing, and even a free plumbing inspection.

Who Is Responsible For A Blocked Drain?

Who Is Responsible For A Blocked Drain?

Blocked drains are a pain – they are disruptive, messy and potentially very expensive. So, trying to figure out who is responsible for a blocked drain is likely one of the last things you would like to think about while figuring out how to unclog your plumbing.

That is why our local plumbing team have put together a little guide as to who is responsible for different blocked drains and who to call – if you require some further assistance or information, contact Ryan Old Plumbing today on 1300 055 940.

What are the most common causes of blocked drains?

The most common causes of blocked drains are:

  • Grease, oils and fats.
  • Tree roots, plants and/or dirt that damages plumbing.
  • Storm damage.
  • Foreign objects, such as toys.
  • Wet wipes.
  • Hygiene products and sanitary items.
  • Human hair.

There are so many more things that can cause a drain blockage, but these are the ones that blocked drain plumbers see most often.

Who is responsible for a blocked drain?

When the property is owner-occupied

Property owner

  • Any and all plumbing issues and blockages that are located on your property are your responsibility. This includes in, under and around your home and any other buildings on your property.

Council/Wastewater Authority

  • Your local council or wastewater authority is responsible for all the pipes, drains and water metres that lead away from your property. They respond to blockages or issues in the main sewer line, as well as in the stormwater network from your property boundary.

When the property is rented

According to the Retail Tenancies Authority in Queensland, the following applies.


The Landlord is responsible for a blocked drain if:

  • The Landlord is the one who caused the blocked drain or caused damage that resulted in a blocked drain.
  • The blocked drain is due to fair wear and tear, such as age, storm damage and/or tree roots.
  • If the blocked drain is no one’s fault, the Landlord is responsible as property owner.


The Tenant is responsible for a blocked drain if:

  • The Tenant is the one who caused the blocked drain, even if it was accidentally. This can include situations such as foreign objects falling down the drain unintentionally or human hair causing a blockage.
  • The Tenant caused damage to the property, which resulted in a blocked drain.

If a situation arises where the blocked drain is an emergency it may be that the tenant arranges the appropriate fix to occur and who is responsible is arranged at a later date.

Who should you call if there is a blocked mains sewer drain?

Who you should call when it comes to a blocked mains sewer drain depends on where you are located. Also remember, calling someone for assistance when it comes to blocked mains sewer drains refers to pipes, drains and/or inspection points that are not located on your property or another private property.


Brisbane residents can call Queensland Urban Utilities 24 hours a day on 13 23 64. More information can be found at

Gold Coast

Gold Coast residents can call the City of Gold Coast on (07) 5667 5801 or 1300 000 928.

More information can be found at


Redland residents can call the Redland City Council on (07) 3829 8999. More information can be found at


Logan residents can call the Logan City Council on (07) 3412 3412 or 1300 156 426 (if you have a Logan City Landline). More information can be found at

Need urgent help with your drains in Brisbane and Gold Coast? Our local plumbers can help. Contact us today on 1300 055 940 or complete our online plumber booking form.

How to Unblock a Drain

How to Unblock a Drain

Tips to clear a blocked drain

Blocked drains are one of the most frustrating inconveniences for any homeowner, which is why it is important to know how you can unclog your drain quickly if it’s blocked. This article covers a range of different drain unblocking methods that you can choose from when clearing a clogged drain.

Boiling water

To remove soap or fat blockages from a drain, you can simply just pour boiling water down the clogged pipe. This method is easy and free, however, you do have to take caution when pouring the boiling water as you could burn yourself or damage the sink seal.

Natural Enzymes

Natural enzymes can deal with drain blockages that are harder to unblock. This method involves firstly, adding ½ a cup of salt, then ½ a cup of bi-carb soda, then 1 cup of vinegar followed by pouring 1 cup of hot water down the drain also.

Using natural enzymes is danger free, won’t do damage to the drains and can be repeated as many times as necessary. It is often effective at clearing most blocked drains, however other methods are required for dealing with more severe blockages.

The chemical approach

Hydrochloric acid and a wide range of commercial drain cleaner products are often used to combat blocked drains. They are poured down a clogged drain and left there for around 30 minutes, before being washed out with water.

These products are fairly cost effective and are available at many hardware stores and supermarkets. However, when handling hydrochloric acids and drain cleaners, it is best to carefully read the instructions, wear protective gloves, glasses and a breathing mask.

Plunger method

Although plungers are seen as a bit of an ‘old school’ way of clearing a blocked drain, this method is still quite effective, especially for toilets. In order to have enough pressure to push air through the drain, you will need to create a drain seal. This can be done by blocking off one of the drains in a double sink or by covering the overflow with a damp cloth. This method can take a few attempts but is often very successful.

Plumbers drain snake

The drain snake is a flexible metal cable that is inserted into a drain and rotated, either by hand or with a machine, to clear out blockages. The drain snake is also another extremely effective declogging method used by a number of plumbers.

You can hire drain snakes however, they are difficult to effectively operate without the sufficient training and experience. You can also damage ceramic drain pipes with a drain snake, so it is often best to hire a plumber.

Checking the u-bend

Despite how close the u-bend is located to the start of a drain pipe, blockages can still occur in this part of a drain. When checking the u-bend, it is best to always wear protective gloves and clothing to protect yourself from drainage fluids. You just need to unscrew the u-bend from the connected drain pipe and clean it out. It is handy to have a bucket below the pipe when you are opening it to catch any fluid that might come out during the process.

Hiring a professional plumber

The most effective way to unblock a drain is to have it done by a professional! Qualified plumbers like the team at Ryan Old Plumbing have all of necessary training, experience and equipment to efficiently unblock a drain in your home. They will save you the hassle of hiring or buying equipment that you aren’t experienced with or won’t find a good use for after the drain is unblocked.

Your Brisbane drain cleaner specialists

If you want your drain unblocked by a plumbing professional, get in touch with Ryan Old Plumbing. We are industry experts when it comes to unblocking drains efficiently and to a high standard.

We also offer a professional drain cleaning service, which is a regular clean of your home’s drains to prevent blockages from occurring in the first place. Talk to us today about your blocked drains on 1300 055 940 or complete our blocked drains request form.

What is pipe relining?

When it comes to issues with your plumbing, they can be messy and disruptive enough on their own – you don’t want to have to deal with your garden being pulled up and damaged just so a pipe can be replaced.

school projects

Enter pipe relining – a great alternative to the traditional method of pipe replacement. Keep reading to learn more, or give Ryan Old Plumbing a call today on 0488 856 880.

What is pipe relining?

Pipe relining has been around for over 25 years, but it is a pretty new concept here in Australia. Pipe relining is the process of inserting a tube-like lining inside a pipe which may have a crack or a leak. This stops the need for extensive earthworks to remove and replace one broken pipe, and the lining is likely to be stronger than the original piping.

Additionally, when a drain has been blocked by tree roots, they are likely blasted out using water (also known as jet rodding) however this does not fix the cracks in the piping and only removes the blockage. Pipe relining fixes the area in which the tree root got in, as well as protecting it from further damage.

When can pipe relining be used?

PIpe relining can be used in almost any circumstance, however it works well:

  • When plumbing is in a hard to reach place, such as under a concrete slab.
  • Where plumbing is located under areas that would suffer if excavated, such as gardens or landscaping.
  • Where piping is at strange angles.
  • For ageing plumbing.

And so much more! In general, the only circumstances in which pipe relining can not be used is if the piping is severely damaged. If this is the case, the pipe relining does not have anything to attach too, so a full replacement will be required.

What are the benefits of pipe relining?

There are a huge variety of benefits when it comes to pipe relining:

  • Little to no excavation works are needed.
  • Great for plumbing in hard to reach places.
  • Can be installed using access points and/or manholes already in place.
  • Less time is needed – pipe relining can usually be carried out in a fraction of the time it would take to dig and replace.
  • Very cost effective for plumbing in difficult locations.
  • Less excavation works means less cost for equipment and labour.
  • Perfect for ageing plumbing under delicate infrastructure, such as heritage homes.
  • Very versatile, meaning it can be used to repair sewer or stormwater drains made from a range of products including clay, concrete, cast iron and PVC.
  • Great option for pipes that suffer recurring blocked drain problems due to tree roots.
  • A strong layer is created on the inside of the pipe which, in effect, creates a new pipe inside the old one.
  • The pipe relining lasts a long time, with a design life up to 50 years.
  • Reduced safety issues, as creating a large trench or hole in a busy area presents a significant safety risk.

Who can implement pipe relining?

You should always call in a qualified plumbing professional to complete any pipe relining works that require completing. Pipe relining is a specialist job that requires the correct tools and equipment, as well as expertise and experience, so it is not a DIY job for a Sunday afternoon!

For further information, or to speak to a pipe relining expert, give Ryan Old Plumbing a call today on 0488 856 880.


What is Pipe Patching?

Understanding the no dig pipe repair process

Do you think you have a leaking pipe under your house or driveway? Having a leaking pipe is bad enough, but the thought of plumbers digging up your driveway to access and fix the broken drain is even worse. Luckily, pipe patching is an available method, which allows plumbers to fix broken pipes and drains without any digging.

This revolutionary method allows residents to save a significant amount of time and money, whilst also avoiding the demolition involved with the traditional approach. If you want to know more about pipe patching and its benefits for your home, have a look at the information below.

How does pipe patching work?

Now you may be wondering; ‘if a pipe is under a driveway, how do plumbers find where the leak is? Plumbers often look for telltale signs of a leak such as mould, cracks or leaking water; however, to find exactly where the leak is, plumbers use drain cameras. Drain cameras are tiny cameras that are put into a drain, which enables a plumber to see from the inside of a drain.

They move along the inside until the plumber has located where the damaged area of the pipe is. The cameras also allow plumbers to see the size, shape and severity of the damage.

After locating the damaged area, plumbers will then decide whether pipe patching or a complete pipe relining is appropriate. To patch up the broken pipe, pipe lining the size of the damaged area is inserted into the pipe via an inflatable tube. Once in the correct position, the tube is inflated so that the lining patches the damaged area by filling the cracks.

The lining will need to be set and solidify before the pipe can be used again. The time required for solidification is equivalent to the amount of patching used; however, it is generally short for pipe patching as only a small area is patched. Once the plumber ensures that the pipe is set, the repair is complete.

When is pipe patching useful?

Pipe patching is extremely useful for pipes that are difficult to access. Pipes under homes or driveways require a substantial amount of demolition for a repair to be completed. By using pipe patching instead, clients will save a significant amount of money and time.

Pipe patching can be used for a range of different types of pipes, such as;

  • PVC pipes.
  • Copper pipes.
  • Stainless steel pipes.
  • Rubber pipes.
  • Fiberglass pipes.
  • Polypropylene pipes.

What are the benefits of pipe patching?

  • Cost effective.
  • Time efficient.
  • No/minimal digging/demolition.
  • Suited to a wide range of pipe types.
  • Suited to pipes with difficult accessibility.
  • Cheaper than fixing an entire pipe if only a small fix is needed.

Your pipe patching specialists Brisbane

If you are looking for an expert pipe patching specialist in Brisbane, get in touch with Ryan Old Plumbing. Our team are trade professionals when it comes to completing a wide range of drainage solutions at a professional standard. Contact us today on 1300 055 940 or by completing our pipe patching plumber request form.

How to fix a blocked drain

Blocked drains are not fun at all. They can be messy, smelly and can cause a huge range of problems.


That is why we have put together a little guide to show you how to fix a blocked drain. We always recommend that you call in a professional however, if you have decided that you will go down the DIY route, keep reading for a few ways to unclog a drain.

What are the signs you have a blocked drain?

The signs and symptoms of a blocked drain can be a nuisance in themselves, and that is before you even get to the blockage. Some of the common things to look out for include:

  • Smell: There is a bad smell coming from the drain.
  • Draining: The plumbing is draining slower than normal.
  • Sounds: The drain is making gurgling noises.
  • Toilet water level: Drain blockages can cause your toilet water level to rise.


What are the common causes of blocked drains?

There are a range of things that can cause blockages in drains, including:

  • Grease and oil.
  • Hair.
  • Toiletries and sanitary items.
  • Excess toilet paper.
  • Tree roots.
  • Foreign objects, such as the build up of soap or food scraps.

How do you fix a blocked drain?

There are a few different ways that you can fix a blocked drain, and we’ve listed some of the DIY options below. If you are concerned at all, always call in the professionals – remember, they have done this before, more time than they can likely count! Or give Ryan Old Plumbing a call on 0488 856 880 and they can assist in Brisbane and the surrounding suburbs.


Check the U-bend

The first thing you should do when you have a blocked drain is to check the U-bend. A lot of the time, food blockages in the kitchen sink won’t actually go any further than the U-bend right under the sink. The best way to go about things is to grab a bucket, place it directly under the sink, unscrew the two connections of the plumbing and check the piping to see if you can spot a blockage. If you can, clean it out into the bucket and put the pipes back together again. May sound simple, but it works!

Boiling water & detergent

Well, almost boiling water. One of the first things you should do is place a teaspoon of detergent down the affected blocked drain, then place around 1 litre of (almost) boiling water down the drain. You will (likely) be required to do this multiple times, however it is a simple and easy way to clear out smaller blockages. Also remember that water that is too hot can damage PVC piping, so never place boiling water down the drain.

Baking soda & vinegar

If you would like to try something else, give baking soda, vinegar and water a go. When you mix baking soda and vinegar together, they will begin to bubble and this can assist in breaking down the blockage in your drain. The best way to approach this is by pouring (almost) boiling water down the drain, followed by ½ cup of baking soda and leave for around 3 mins, then 1 cup of plain vinegar and 1 cup of almost boiling water and place the drain plug in. Leave for 10 minutes, then pour another 1 litre of (almost) boiling water to help clean out any more of the blockage that may still be left behind.

A plunger

The old fashioned, traditional way to unclog a drain is to use a plunger to get the blockage out. The force that you put into the plunger is what forces the air through the plumbing, pushing out the clogged section. To make sure you have the best chance of unblocking the drain, always cover over the overflow with a damp cloth to provide a drain seal and then use the plunger. Additionally, if you have a double sink, always block off the other drain hole to obtain the best pressure. Always make sure you give the plunger more than a few goes before giving up – many people over the years have suggested this is the best solution to a blocked drain, every time.

Chemical drain cleaners

Options such as Drain-O, Caustic Soda and Hydrochloric Acid are common choices people turn to when they have a blocked drain, and they are generally readily available at your local supermarket or hardware store. They are not always the best choice though, and can cause damage to both you and your plumbing, so make sure you read the instructions super carefully and follow them properly at all times. Also, always wear a mask and gloves when using chemical drain cleaners, and never place hot water down a drain immediately following them, as it can spray back in your face.

Plumber’s snake

Another option is to hire a plumber’s snake, otherwise known as a drain auger or an electric eel, to clear out the blockage. They are available from most hire locations and unblock almost anything found in plumbing, however they require quite a bit of skills to use and can cause quite a lot of damage and mess if not used correctly. We always recommend wearing protective clothing and practising good hygiene should you come into contact with any drain fluids and remember, a plumber’s snake can scratch ceramic surfaces.


Call in the professionals

Lastly, call in the professionals. Sometimes it is just best to call a plumber and ask for a little bit of help. They have all the appropriate tools and equipment to complete the job and know what they are doing, saving you time and money in both the short and long term.

How do you prevent blocked drains?

Ultimately, the best way to fix a blocked drain is prevention. Stopping a blocked drain from occurring in the first place is the best course of action if you can, so a few steps you can take include:

  • Monitor what you place down the drain. This can include food scraps, oil, toiletries and other items such as toys.
  • Always use your garbage disposal as it was designed to be used.
  • Place drain mesh over your plug holes, to catch hair and other debris.
  • Have your drains regularly cleaned by a professional.
  • Never flush anything besides toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. And watch how much toilet paper you flush too!

toilet leaking

For further information, or for some assistance with blocked drains in Brisbane and the surrounding areas, give Ryan Old Plumbing a call on 0488 856 880 and we can assist with all your plumbing and drainage needs.