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Drain cleaning price dispute

  • 28-12-2022 2:09pm
    Registered Users Posts: 6

    Hi, looking for some advice here. We had our drain unblocked by a drain cleaning company 2 weeks ago. At the time they asked us to monitor it and if we had the same problem again they would come back out and use a camera to see what is causing the blockage. We paid and said we would do that. Anyway a couple weeks later we had the same problem so called them back and they came out. All fine, they found the blockage (a bamboo root) but we would have to pay them to come back to remove it. Got to them leaving and they said it’s €500 cash only. First off they never said this was that price on the phone, we had assumed it was the price on the previous invoice which listed a call out drainage cost and extra for the camera. Secondly they never stated it was cash only. Spoke to the guys manager who said it was a holiday rate which I disputed as it’s not a bank holiday ( it’s the 28th December). Got off the phone and rang around other drainage companies and they all quoted around 180 inc VAT and never mentioned a holiday rate. This seems like a scam to me, first off the price is way out compared to the market and secondly to demand cash afterwards. My husband called them again to discuss but the manager/owner was very abrupt and said he didn’t want to deal with it now and that he’d just found out his employees daughter had died. Don’t know what to make of it. We’re waiting for him to call back. I’m going to suggest I’ll pay the price on the original invoice (not the inflated holiday price) and that I’ll pay by card when his card machine is back working when I can get a full receipt. Wanted to hear others thoughts on this. Appreciate any feedback/comments.


    Post edited by Spear on


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,351 ✭✭✭Pauliedragon

    Your in the wrong forum fox. Consumer issues is the forum you need.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6 fox82

    Thanks for that! I’ll move it over now.

  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators, Help & Feedback Category Moderators Posts: 24,836 CMod ✭✭✭✭Spear

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,970 ✭✭✭The Continental Op

    I didn't know it was still going on but there have always been scams in the drain cleaning business. The standard one is a cheap call out but thats about all the do call out anything else that needs equipment like a camera needs another visit which will be more expensive, then another call when the camera finds something that needs more special equipment, sounds like the case here.

    If you have any roots growing into the drain there is nothing and I mean nothing that will stop it happening again short of digging up the whole drain run and replacing it with modern plastic pipe. However there are other reasons for drains being blocked any decent drain cleaning operator will show you the camera footage so you can see the problem, if they won't then somethings dodgy. They may be setting you up for an even bigger job of digging the whole drain run up and only seeing whats on the camera will allow you to make a sensible decision.

    If it is roots blocking the drain and the blockage is within 30 foot of your access point just get a set of drain rods and learn how to use them (keep turning them clockwise) because the roots will be back, but regular rodding will stop them getting worse.

    Thing is it takes more than 2 weeks for roots to grow back and bamboo aren't near the top of the list for blocking drains, plenty of other species are much worse.

    Edit> Sorry if I've answered this as more of a DIY question but I'd have cleared it myself.

    Wake me up when it's all over.

  • Registered Users Posts: 69 ✭✭twofish101

    I would have to disagree with you regarding your comments regarding bamboo blocking drains, it is a very agressive grower and some varieties can grow up to 15m underground and it is really really hard to control/eradicate. If it is in the pipe already then as you said there will be a bit of digging to get it out and the crack/hole will need a permanent repair. Unlike Japanese knotweed, bamboo is not officially classed as an invasive species but it up there with the knotweed in my opinion. Attempts to kill the plant using herbicide are likely to fail, leaving only two practical approaches for those wanting their gardens bamboo-free. It is possible to treat it yourself using the energy depletion method, which involves cutting the canes to ground level before new leaf appears and repeating the process annually in order to deplete the energy reserves in the root system, which can take several years. Alternatively, it can be professionally excavated in a matter of days

    this begs the question who owns the bamboo plant?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,970 ✭✭✭The Continental Op

    Bamboo roots will go through all sorts including butyl rubber pond liners, geotextiles and puddled clay, all problems I have experience with. They will even find their way into a house through gaps in brickwork however the root system is quite shallow so they rarely do any damage to correctly situated drains.

    My point for the OP is to ponder is the voracity of what these guys are telling him. Just because there is a bamboo nearby doesn't mean its a problem or even that there are any roots in the drain.

    Wake me up when it's all over.