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Who's responsible for clean drains?

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Author Topic: Who's responsible for clean drains?  (Read 157 times)
Newbie
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« on: December 02, 2020, 05:53:52 PM »

I have this phorid fly problem in my flat in this old house that's been converted into 3 flats.  Phorid flies are to be found in my kitchen, lounge and hallway since September.  I've also seen them downstairs next to the door of the flat there (the flat below me).

This pest controller guy visited my flat yesterday and said he reckoned it's most likely the overflow pipe in the kitchen sink all gunked up.  But he also suggested the problem might originate from the flat underneath.  Or that cleaning the pipes might not work and fumigation might be necessary.  But that initially a plumber would come round and change the waste trap section or whatever underneath the kitchen sink.

OK, the property management working for the landlord just sent me an email where she states: " The pest controller has advised me that the flies have been living and breeding in the waste trap section of your sink due to the debris that have accumulated in there".  She goes on to say that the cleanliness of the drains is my responsibility and that I (the tenant) will be expected to pay the invoice for any works undertaken.  She suggested I might sort the problem out myself by putting bleach down the sink and wastepipe.  Well, I've put huge amounts of bleach down the sinks and overflow thingies (is that a waste pipe?) in the past 3 months and that didn't do anything!

The question I would like to ask is whether tenants are obliged to have to occasionally dissemble the pipes below the sink and clean them?  If so, then so be it.  However, I'm a bit concerned that since it hasn't been definitely established that it is these pipes, it could be money down the drain (so to speak) if in fact the problem resides elsewhere.  (The pest controller guy said to me that he reckoned waste trap section was the most likely source, not that it definitely was).   

A bit more info.  My flat suffers from damp problems that the property management and landlord are aware of and have been sent photos of, but haven't done anything about.  Does this change anything?

Any advice would be much appreciated.
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« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2020, 11:30:17 AM »

My first thought is I am grateful you are not my tenant.Maybe I am being unfair,you may not be living like a slob.but you really should not be pouring cooking oil,food waste,coffee grains etc.down the sink.If you have been doing so then bleach alone will not shift it. It is your responsibility to keep the drainage of sinks and toilets clear within your property.Have you spoken to the other neighbours to see if they are having the same problem? Until you get your pipes done you can't tell what the cause is,so that should be your priority.If it is just your place you should pay for the work.

I also wonder if your own lifestyle is causing the damp you complain of ? If you are drying clothes indoors,  failing to keep the place warm and ventillated,you will get damp.There is a lot of information on the internet about how to minimise.You should also be wiping down the affected areas with diluted bleach or a specialist cleaning product.  P.S.Just a thought, have you seen or heard your neighbour recently?
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« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2020, 11:41:44 AM »

Tenants are certainly not expected to disassemble the pipework underneath sinks and clean them. It's commented that the problem might not be there... but it's relatively easy to find out... I mean, it's easier for some guy to just take it apart and put it back together, even with new, than it would be to think about cameras on the end of long flexible sticks etc.. As to whether you can do it yourself - sure you can. There'll be YouTube videos on this all over. Things generally just unscrew... there's a limited amount of water within that you need to be prepared for... but no new water coming in that will freak out out. All that said, I somehow feel you'll end up ruling this out in the end... anyway, the worst you would need is a pair of pliers and some strength.

I could be wrong, though.

All in all... if you genuinely think that the property has issues that you are not responsible for - and your Landlord (effectively) refuses to take any action to correct then you must move... vote with your feet. It's one of the big advantages of renting. If things don't suit you it's relatively easy to move on to somewhere better.
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Posts: 13

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« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2020, 05:32:09 AM »

After seeing if the people in the other 2 flats have the same issue or not, consider taking the landlord to court if he wont fix the problem or reduce your rent to compensate you.   .  He will soon have a plumber in there to find out what the problem is or you will get a payday in a years time.

It has nothing to do with what you have put down the sink.
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