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Drains and sewers

Blocked drains and sewers can cause problems for you and your neighbours.

Find out about:


Who is responsible for drains and sewers?

Property owners and occupiers are responsible for drains - the waste water pipes from inside the property (such as toilets and sinks), and most guttering or downpipes on the outside of the property. They are also responsible for the drains from where they go into the ground until they reach the 'public sewer' (see the diagram below). 

If there's a blockage or leak in the pipework or drains on your property you will need to sort it out - or employ someone to fix it for you. If you don't it could lead to a public health problem and action could be taken against you. If you rent your home or business premises your tenancy agreement will tell you what you are responsible for and what the landlord will deal with. Find out how we can help.

Where a drain leaves the boundary of the property, or where it joins with a drain from another home or business, it becomes a 'public sewer'. Yorkshire Water is responsible for public sewers in Chesterfield - report a problem with a public sewer.Sewer Responsibilities


What we can do

Council homes

If you rent your home from us we will fix problems with your drains. You may be charged for this work if the problem was caused by misuse - such as pouring fat down your sink or flushing items that shouldn't be put down the toilet. Contact us to report a problem at your council home.

Private rented or housing association properties

If you've already asked your landlord but they haven't sorted a problem with your drains you can report it to us. If they don't carry out the work we can fix the issue and recharge the cost to them.

Property owners

If you own your home or business premises, or own properties that you rent out, you can contract us to fix problems with your underground drains. Contact us to ask for a quote. 


Public health problems

A blocked private drain could cause a public health problem, such as:

  • leaking sewage
  • standing waste water
  • attracting rats or flies
  • causing a bad smell

If your neighbour's drain is causing a problem you should let them know, read our advice about solving a problem with your neighbour.

If a public health problem isn't fixed we can issue an enforcement notice telling the owners what they need to do. If they don't sort it out we can take action and carry out the work - we will then recharge the costs to the property owner or occupier.


Contact us about drain problems

Get in touch to report a problem with a blocked drain in your council or privately rented home, or at a neighbouring property if it is causing a public health problem.

You can also contact us to ask for a quote for carrying out work to the drains at a property you own.

Call our customer services team on 01246 345345 for more details.


Problems with highway drainage and flooding

Derbyshire County Council is responsible for the drainage system on the roads in Chesterfield. Find out more about highway drainage and flooding.


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Last updated on 31 March 2022