Drainage Issues To Consider When Altering Your Property

Many homeowners are now opting to improve and extend their properties rather than relocate. One enhancement that can add considerable value to your property is the addition of a further bathroom or toilet.

An en suite master bedroom is always popular, whilst the provision of downstairs sanitation is a bonus where it is envisaged the property will be used in old age when mobility issues might arise.

A key consideration that is often overlooked during the bathroom planning process is where and how the drainage will be facilitated, as poorly designed drainage can have a number of significant and costly consequences. Read on for key factors to take into account to ensure the drainage for your new bathroom is effective and problem free.

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Location, location, location

Correct siting of waste water pipes and soil stacks is absolutely vital. An external wall is required, enabling waste to be quickly eliminated from the house. Whilst some creative DIY enthusiasts may try and channel waste under the home, not only is this extremely costly, but in the event of a blockage the floor may well have to be removed to get appropriate access. Combine this with the health hazards of foul water flooding into your home and it becomes clear why an external wall on which to fix a sink, bath, toilet or shower unit is almost always the best option.

Position with respect to the sewage pipe

Not all external walls are created equal!

Some may be only a short distance from the sewer pipe, requiring minimal additional piping before the waste is transferred to the sewer. Others may be some distance away, needing a longer reach.

Not only does this scenario require more materials and disruption during installation, but clearance may be a far more costly and protracted procedure should a blockage occur at some distance from the pipe opening. There is also the issue of navigating other pipes or obstructions on the way to the sewer, which may cause the new pipe to be full of awkward corners, risking waste build-up.

Types of drainage

Toilet pipework and that required for “clean” foul water, for example that which is coming from baths or washing machines, are significantly different. Sink and bath water can be channelled away using relatively cheap PVC pipes and guttering. The health hazards of this type of water are fairly minimal, so a competent handyperson can often do this affordably.

Conversely, toilet waste is highly toxic and presents a significant health risk if not properly disposed of. A professionally installed soil stack is a necessity which needs to be costed into any project.

The price can be reduced by locating an additional toilet on the same wall as an existing soil stack, when it is often possible to install a new stack arm rather than a further stack.

Drainage is a critical factor in the success or otherwise of new bathroom design, so ignore it at your peril!


If in doubt, consult a professional drainage company, such as Express Drainage Solutions, who can only advise on an appropriate course of action. This ensures your new sanitation will provide reliable, hygienic service and forestall many of the drainage problems poorly located pipework can bring and the likely repairs required thereafter.

Want more information?Contact us today on 020 3124 1785

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Category: Drainage


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