Pancake mix could cost you £300 in ‘costly’ property repairs

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After demolishing a stack of delicious pancakes, it might be tempting to throw your leftover pancake mix down the sink. However, the flour, oil and fat in the mixture can result in blocked or burst pipes, which could cost homeowners around £300 to fix.

With this in mind, plumbing experts at Rated People are warning homeowners of the damage that pouring leftover pancake mix down the drain can do to homes and the bigger issues it can cause.

Despite how delicious pancake mixture is, it can wreak havoc once it is poured down the sink.

The plumbing experts said: “Pancake batter contains flour, fat and oil and this is a recipe for disaster when it comes to drains as it can quickly harden in pipes and lead to blockages and burst pipes which can be costly to repair.

“Pouring leftover pancake mix down the drain can also contribute to fatbergs in sewers. A fatberg is when fat and grease combine with unflushable items (such as wet wipes and cotton buds).

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“Fatbergs prevent water from flowing through, and it’s estimated that South West Water spends a huge £4.5million every year just clearing blockages from its 17,000km sewer network.

“One recent fatberg in London’s sewers, nicknamed ‘Fatty McFatberg’, was reported to have stretched for 250 metres and weighed in at a whopping 130 tonnes.”

The cost of a burst pipe

Depending on how easy it is to access the pipe, it would cost around £150 – £300 to fix the issue, which is far more than the cost of a pancake.

The Rated People plumbing experts added: “Leaking or fully burst pipes caused by increased pressure from blockages can cause damage to your property and possessions, which means fixing the broken pipework could only be part of the repair cost.

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“Whether it’s a plastic or copper pipe, the solution will likely involve replacing the section of the pipe that’s damaged.

“Fixing a burst water pipe that’s easy to access will cost around £150, but with no visible access, the job is trickier and that can set you back by around £300 on average.

“Those hard-to-locate leaks are where a plumber’s expertise is even more valuable.”

Natalie White, head of brand communications at Rated People, added: “We understand the excitement around Pancake Day and we, like so many others in the UK, will be channelling our inner Mary Berry to create the best pancake stacks.

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“However, it’s really important that people are aware of the damage that pouring leftover batter down the drain can do to your home.

“To avoid facing an unwelcome repair bill of around £300, it’s a much better idea to reuse the leftover batter instead of pouring it down the kitchen sink.

“If you’re already noticing plumbing changes like leaks and water that’s slow to drain away, or you’re worried about a blockage, we’d recommend bringing in a skilled plumber to identify and fix the problem sooner rather than later when it could get worse.”

If you have a small blockage in the sink, you might be able to fix it yourself using natural methods.

Homeowners can use white vinegar, baking soda, boiling water or salt to unblock a sink.

One hack involves pouring half a cup of table salt down the drain followed by boiling water.

Alternatively, you could try putting a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar down the sink, let it bubble, wait 15 minutes and then pour boiling water down the drain.

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