Should landlord pay for blocked toilet?
Should landlord pay for blocked toilet? Few things are worse than your toilet overflowing or pipes getting choked with waste. But paying a hefty bill to get drains unblocked can be infuriating, especially if it’s your landlord’s responsibility. So should your landlord cover the cost when toilets block? We outline tenant drain rights and obligations.
Landlord’s Responsibility: Drains and Sewers
Under housing law, landlords retain legal responsibility for maintaining and clearing shared or exterior drainage systems in rental properties. These include:
- External sewer pipes and drains
- Manholes and outdoor overflow pipes
- Gullies connecting to municipal sewer lines
That means if tree roots invade external pipes or sewers collapse, your landlord must pay for professional drain repairs and clearance. They can’t pass these communal structural costs onto tenants.
Tenant’s Responsibility: Inside Plumbing
However, as tenants you’re generally liable for clearing blockages originating inside your flat or rented rooms after the initial connection point. This includes:
- Your own toilets, sinks and baths
- Ensuite pipes and private waste outlets
- Kitchen drains only serving your self-contained unit
Unless a toilet blockage stems from structural faults or faults originating outside your rooms, tenants must cover internal plumbing unblocking expenses.
Seeking Compromise and Clarity
For ambiguous situations like partial clogs affecting both internal and external pipes, tenants should request landlords cover or share costs. Proactively maintaining drains can also prevent disputes. Discuss installing exterior drain cameras with your landlord for insight on blockage locations.
By understanding these drain liabilities, tenants and landlords can resolve leaks and overflows cooperatively, keeping rental housing hazard-free. If your landlord is refusing to carry out repairs then feel free to seek legal advice to get the situation sorted. Living with unresolved plumbing issues could be hazardous to your health.
Housing Disrepair Advice: https://housingdisrepairadvice.org/contact
Housing Ombudsman: https://www.housing-ombudsman.org.uk/