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Hints & Tips

August 2020

How to Recover Something Dropped Down the Drain

How to Recover Something Dropped Down the Drain

Uh oh! You’ve dropped a crucial item down the drain. If you’re looking through the grate at your marooned keys, wallet or wedding ring right now, chances are you’re feeling pretty helpless.

From persuading your small-handed friend to try to squeeze their arm through the gap to retrieve your essentials (we do not recommend this, in the strongest possible terms, unless you fancy a visit from the fire brigade or a trip to A&E) to scrabbling desperately with a coat hanger (again, not something we recommend)… I’m sure lots of hare-brained schemes have run through your mind since watching your smartphone, jewellery or purse tumble horribly and inevitably through the cracks! But all might not be lost. It’s not always easy to retrieve items which have been dropped in drains, but it is perfectly possible.

In this blog, we’ll explain the steps you should take to retrieve your dropped items.

1. Find out which local water authority is responsible

Whether you’re in your home town or further afield, your first port of call is the local council or water authority responsible for the drain in question. As drains are part of the public sewer system, you’ll need permission before you can go any further with your retrieval process. In North Wales, that water authority will either be Dwr Cymru (Welsh Water) or Severn Trent Water. Here’s a helpful map which will help you find out who serves the area in which your catastrophe occurred.

2. Ask very nicely

Now it’s time to call your local water authority and turn on the charm. Retrieving dropped items is not high on any authority’s priority list, so be prepared to receive bad news, but also make sure you have all the facts and information to hand to help make the process easier for them.

3. Be prepared to pay

This service doesn’t come cheap. If the local authority says yes, they’ll be providing representatives to retrieve your lost items and you will have to bear the cost. This varies from provider to provider. In Leeds, the rate is around £100. In Surrey, it’s £300. Out of hours, services can cost even more. Decide whether the item is worth the cost, then bite the bullet to get it back.

Good luck! Whether you’ve dropped an item in a private drain, gulley or sink, Drain Doctor can help.

We offer a complete range of drainage services across North Wales, from CCTV drain surveys to emergency plumbing. To learn more, please explore our services online or call our team on 0800 096 2352.