Domestic Drainage Excavation

Drains being excavated

As part of our drain and pipe repair services at UKDN Waterflow (LG) Ltd, we offer domestic drain excavations to residential properties around the UK, along with small civils projects for SMEs.

Read on to find out what a domestic drain excavation is, when it is needed, and the process we would take to ensure it is done safely, with minimal damage and inconvenience to you and your property.

What is drainage excavation?

Drainage excavation is when part of a drainage system is dug up in order to repair it. A domestic excavation must be undertaken by a professional team – such as UKDN Waterflow– to ensure it is safely completed with minimal damage to the drain and surrounding areas.

When is drain excavation needed?

It’s worth bearing in mind that most drainage issues in your property won’t require an excavation and can usually be repaired by CIPP lining. A domestic drain excavation is only necessary for serious repairs that cannot be fixed unless a drain professional can safely inspect and physically get to or remove the pipe.


There are a number of serious issues that could result in a domestic excavation needing to take place, such as a collapsed pipe, root ingress, a severe blockage, or a severely damaged or burst pipe.

Case study: UKDN domestic drain excavation

For eight years, the owners of a Victorian property were experiencing rancid odours, backed-up toilets and internal floods as a result of their foul water drainage pipe.

With the aim of fixing and resolving the issue, the property owners got in touch with two separate contractors to attempt to unblock and repair the drain, but both unfortunately failed. The blocked drain began to cause serious problems for the owners, resulting in them contacting us for a permanent solution.

We worked alongside the property owners and their insurance company to put together a detailed plan and ensure the domestic drain excavation was performed safely, and with minimal damage and disruption.

As part of our plan, we performed a CCTV drain survey to locate and assess the severity of the blockage. Using video footage, along with the evidence found during the excavation process, we were able to see that the Buchan trap had collapsed – a Buchan trap is a device that is commonly found in Victorian properties to keep out vermin, such as rats and mice. However, with modern plumbing this device is no longer needed.

We were able to replace the Buchan trap with a straight section of pipe to remove the blockage and prevent future issues. A full-sized manhole was also installed to give the best maintenance access and to prevent further blockage problems.

The end result meant that the property owners were no longer suffering from regular foul odours, internal floods and backlogs for the first time in eight years. Plus, as the excavation was carried out safely, the work resulted in no damage to the foundations and overall property.

Find out more about this case and the plans that were put in place to achieve a successful result with minimal damage and inconvenience.

If you are experiencing issues with your drainage system and looking for advice on whether an excavation is needed, get in touch with us today, or head over to our drain repair page or CCTV drain survey page for more information about our services.