5 Dangers of a Blocked Drainage System on Your Health

Drainage systems are used to get rid of water and other liquids. They serve to remove the unwanted excess fluid, escorting them out of our homes for good. This means that the homes remain clean and safe for everyone living there. To ensure that your drainage system does what is expected, you must keep it clean and unblocked. In this piece, we’re going to cover the five big dangers of a blocked drainage system and what you should do to stop them.

Mold graphic

A blocked drainage system can cause flooding in homes and offices. These blockages usually occur when you fail to maintain your drainage system.  Calling a professional drain plumber is the best way to solve these issues. 

These problems may prove harmful if neglected for long periods because of the consequent buildup of toxic matter in the water, harming your health. Therefore, here are some of the harmful impacts of clocked drainage systems: 

1. Waterborne Diseases

The water in your drainage system will be carrying harmful pathogens and bacteria. If left blocked for a long time, these pathogens would multiply, and the sewage water can cause various diseases. You can get these diseases by drinking contaminated water or coming into contact with dirty hands or other objects.

These bacteria can cause infections in your stomach and intestines. Some stomach infection symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and nausea. These infections can even be life-threatening if you have a weak immune system, The most common diseases that can be transferred through water include cholera, typhoid, hepatitis A, and E. coli infection. 

2. Allergies and Skin Infections

Another harmful impact of a clogged drainage system is that it can cause allergies and skin infections. The stagnant water in the drains will be full of bacteria and other microorganisms. You can develop skin rashes, itchiness, and redness when you contact with this water. Also, in some cases, it can lead to fungal infections.

If the drainage water is left untreated for a long time, it can also lead to more serious skin problems like cellulitis or impetigo. Moreover, high-humidity water in your home can lead to the formation of mold spores. If these spores reach your nose or throat through your nostrils or mouth, they can cause allergic reactions such as sneezing, wheezing, nasal congestion, and itchy eyes. These allergic reactions may be mild at first but can cause severe complications later on.

3. Infestation of Pests

If you have a blocked drainage system, there will be no proper water flow through it. This means that there will be no proper filtration or cleaning inside your pipes, which accumulates dirt and grime inside them over time. This dirt and grime attract insects like rats, cockroaches, and mosquitoes, who hide inside these pipes looking for food sources. Moreover, they can carry germs from the sewage line or septic tank and bring them back to your house,

The bacteria and viruses can cause infections in you or your pets. For example, mosquitoes can cause malaria, dengue fever, or even Zika virus infections. Similarly, rats can also transmit deadly diseases like bubonic plague and Leptospirosis.

4. Food Contamination

Photo of a dirty kitchen sink

A blocked drainage system can contaminate food items stored in the kitchen area. When you have a blocked drain, bacteria from sewage water may enter your kitchen sink or bathtub. The bacteria will spread to other food items stored nearby if there is no proper cleaning mechanism. The bacteria can then be transmitted to your body when you eat food or drink water that is not properly cooked or treated. 

These harmful germs can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and other digestive problems. Moreover, pests like flies and cockroaches that have infested your house can carry bacteria from the toilet to your food. This can cause serious food poisoning.

5. Bad Odor 

A blocked drainage system will result in water stagnation, which usually means that there is no water flowing through the pipes. The stagnant water can create a bad odor, making your home smell like sewage. This is because the sewage or any other waste materials that have been inside the pipes for a long time will start decomposing and produce an unpleasant odor.

Continuous exposure to a bad odor can lead to headaches, nausea, and dizziness. Also, in some cases, it can lead to respiratory problems. Moreover, bad odor makes your space inhabitable and can lead to social embarrassment.


All five of these dangers of a blocked drainage system will have harmful impacts on your health.  To avoid serious consequences, it is important to get the problem fixed as soon as possible. You should also take precautions to prevent contracting the bacteria present in the drain water or try drain snaking. Regular cleaning of your kitchen and bathroom area can also help to reduce the risk of infections.

Moreover, it’s essential to recognize the potential severity of contaminated water in drainage systems. Instances like the Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit underscore the critical connection between stagnant, polluted water and significant health risks, including the development of severe illnesses like cancer. Awareness of these implications emphasizes the importance of maintaining clean, unblocked drainage systems for the overall well-being of individuals.

Tre Pryor, Realtor

Tre Pryor is the leading real estate expert in the city of Louisville. He is a multi-million dollar producer and consistently ranks in the top 1% of Louisville Realtors for homes sold. Tre Pryor has the highest possible rating—5.0 stars on Google—by his clients and is routinely interviewed by the local NBC news. Tre Pryor is a member of the RE/MAX Hall of Fame.