29th August, 2021

5 Ways to Prevent Stormwater Drainage Issues…and What to Do When It’s Too Late

Brisbane sewer grate

When the Brisbane summer storms roll in, as they do year after year, the efficiency and health of your stormwater drainage systems becomes a crucial part of your house or business plumbing structure. It’s essential that this system functions effortlessly to safely direct water away from your property. However, if you find water is overflowing, pooling or creating uncontrolled runoff, you may have a blocked stormwater drain that needs some attention.

Below are some of our expert tips and services to help you evaluate, resolve and prevent stormwater drainage issues.

What to look for

Stormwater collects in two places: on buildings or structures and on land.

Structures such as the roof of your house, balcony or outdoor gazebo need to be monitored for leaks, overflow and signs of pooling. These signs commonly indicate a drainage issue, which can be identified by checking:

  • Roof pipes and guttering for damage, buildup and blockages
  • Restrictions to the water flow from the property to the kerb or drainage channel
  • The placement and effectiveness of drainage reserves and rubble pits
  • Obstructions of council-controlled drainage easement
  • Areas that feel or smell damp for watermarks and leaks

Land areas, such as driveways, garden beds or grassed and paved outdoor areas need to be monitored for overflow, pooling or uncontrolled runoff. These indicators of poor stormwater drainage are common in sloped areas where stormwater is drawn to the lowest point. Unfortunately, this is a natural occurrence, which can be particularly frustrating if the stormwater is coming from neighbouring properties. Things to look out for include:

  • Sloped or uneven areas and low points
  • Cracked concrete, paving and walls
  • Soil erosion patterns
  • Flooded garden beds
  • Recurring puddles and mud patches or stained or dirty areas on concrete or paving
  • Obstructed external drains that may be broken or have overgrown plants and debris

What you can do to prevent stormwater issues

Fortunately, there are various measures to manage the stormwater drainage on your property once you have evaluated the concerns. This will ensure that stormwater damage on your property is reduced and controlled, which will maintain the integrity of your property and land. This is crucial toward upholding your community responsibility of minimising your interference of neighbouring properties, the council stormwater drainage systems and the environment.

Stormwater maintenance is important now, more than ever, that the tropical monsoons and cyclones push their rains to the south. So keeping your drains flowing well is critical to preventing property damage. 

Preventative maintenance is the most effective way to ensure your stormwater drains function successfully. This is also the best way to ensure the longevity of your stormwater drainage system and minimise potential costly damage to your property and land.

Ideally, we recommend checking your stormwater drainage system before and after storms and flooding (particularly if it has been windy), during autumn when trees drop their leaves, or at minimum, thoroughly at the start and end of the summer storm season.

5 Ways to Prevent Stormwater Drainage Issues

  1. Keep drainage points clear of build-up and debris to prevent it clogging other parts of your stormwater drainage system or causing harm to our waterways
  2. Check down-pipes and gutters for any foreign objects that need to be removed (building materials, stones, tennis balls, weeds and other plant matter etc.)
  3. Try flushing your pipes with a hose to prevent, remove or identify internal build-up or blockages
  4. Once a year have your stormwater drainage system professionally water jetted to clear all debris and identify any underlying problems
  5. Consider installing gutter guards, leaf diverters or smaller filters over drainage points to prevent larger debris and foreign objects from entering your stormwater drainage systems and our waterways

What to do if there’s an issue

Due to the nature and dangers of stormwater drains, unfortunately once issues arise, there aren’t quick, simple or safe DIY fixes. There are always risks of further damaging your stormwater drainage system or making the issue worse and more costly. There are also significant risks to your safety from stumbling on roofs, to getting stuck in pipes!

We recommend when it comes to resolving your stormwater drainage issues, that you contact a professional. At Emu Plumbing we have over 75 years combined experience and everyone on our team is fully licensed and trained in all of the equipment we use.

That’s where Emu Pipe Relining & Plumbing comes in

Water jetting is the most common service we use to resolve stormwater drainage issues. Water jetting unblocks and cleans debris from pipes that might be creating an undesirable odour. Regular water jetting is also an excellent preventative maintenance measure that significantly decreases costly damages, such as those caused by the unmaintained growth of tree roots.

Once those pipes are clean, use the latest CCTV drain inspection technology to evaluate the condition of your stormwater drainage system. This enables us to identify concealed issues within your pipes, such as cracks or breaches in the system and diagnose the source or cause of the issue. From this, provide a solution to ensure they don’t cause larger and more costly problems in the future. This process is fast, effective and saves you money as we can quickly and accurately gather the information that we need to problem-solve the best repair and maintenance strategy.

If our CCTV inspections find any cracks in your system, our revolutionary pipe relining service offers technology that repairs your stormwater drainage system without excavation, trenching or downtime.

Simply put, we insert a new, incredibly strong silicate or epoxy resin lining into the affected areas of the pipe. This essentially creates a new section of pipe within your stormwater drainage system that repairs any identified cracks, leaks or breaches. It can be a small section of pipe or an inversion liner of up to 50m or more if required. We also offer a 20 year guarantee on all pipe relining workmanship and our supply partners offer a 50 year guarantee on their pipe relining products, offering you long-term peace of mind.

We pride ourselves as being a leading pipe relining team in Brisbane. We attribute this to our engagement within the industry and prioritisation of research into emerging tools and technologies. Our focus is to offer our customers the best possible solutions for their stormwater drainage problems. Plus, we are so confident in the quality of our work we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all services.

Having trouble with your stormwater drains?

Give us a call today on 07 3358 3201 or get in touch online.




  • “Fast responses, extremely polite, and honest work”

    The team at Emu plumbing never fail to impress. Tony, Niles, Eli and Joseph are all beyond excellent in their work. Fast responses, extremely polite, and honest work. They’re very thorough and take time to explain situations to make sure everyone understands what is being done and why, they hold a great attention to detail and always clean up after themselves. I can’t recommend Emu enough.

    Thank you guys!

    Airport Hacienda Motel
  • “They did a very thorough, excellent job, with photographic evidence, were very reasonably priced and very professional”

    I needed to call an emergency plumber on a Saturday afternoon for issues at the office where I work in Kingsford Smith Drive in Eagle Farm. I called two local after-hours plumbers without success. Emu answered on the first ring although already busy with a job down the road. They estimated they would be finished with the current job and would be at the office by 4.30 pm which they were. They did a very thorough, excellent job, with photographic evidence, were very reasonably priced and very professional/ I would highly recommend them and use their services again without hesitation.

    Teresa S, Happy After Hours Customer
  • “Will use you guys again for sure”

    Very happy with your service and the work done…  will use you guys again for sure.

    Wayne W, Equipment Finance and Leasing
  • “I would recommend”

    Efficient, reliable and friendly service. I would recommend Emu plumbing!
    Chris A, Waterstop Solutions QLD
  • “The boys deserve some high praise”

    I just wanted to let you know what a good job your young lads did. We’re very happy with the result. The boys deserve some high praise – so efficient, thoughtful, pleasant and a work ethic to be treasured.

    Betty M
  • “The team arrived on time and completed their work with obvious care and skill”

    We are extremely happy with the work of the team.  Alistair, Niall and Tye arrived on time and completed their work with obvious care and skill.  They were happy to show us the progression of the work and left the site clean and tidy.  Also, The guy who did the initial inspection and quote displayed similar professionalism (sorry I didn’t remember his name).  They are all a credit to your firm.

    B & J Hancock, Another Happy Customer
  • “In a league of your own! ”

    Both Iréna and I wish to convey our most sincere thanks for you and your team’s swift and professional resolution to our recent plumbing challenges. We could not praise Alistair and Niles more highly for their incredible technical capabilities, their client focus and their well developed interpersonal and communication skills.

    It has been an absolute pleasure dealing with such a progressive organization as Emu Plumbing. What this rather long-running issue that we have been grappling with over several years, and having engaged numerous other “so-called plumbing professionals”, has proven to us is that there are plumbers and then there is your team….in a league of your own!

    Richard G, Another happy customer
  • “Honest and upfront on saving me money”

    Professional and polite tradesmen. Honest and upfront on saving me money by suggesting alternative solution (dig up ended up being cheaper than reline). Will definitely use them again in future.

    I was impressed with them providing photos of the job as it progressed all packaged up.

    Alex W
  • “Definitely will be using Emu again!”

    Great detailed information on the drain inspection report! Definitely will be using Emu again.

    Luke S, Go Green Solutions
  • “Tony and his team are brilliant”

    If you are reading these reviews, trying to find an honest and reliable team, Emu Plumbing won’t let you down. Tony and his team are brilliant, they cleared and patched a severely broken storm water pipe under our carport. Niles & Jason were on time, professional and left the site clean and tidy. Can’t recommend highly enough! Thanks Tony

    Harry S, Happy Pipe Relining Customer
  • “Absolutely amazing and very helpful”

    We were in a situation where we needed a gas technician to come and assess if there was a gas leak at our property where a previous technician has disconnected our gas cylinder and therefore had no gas for hot showers etc. The team at Emu were absolutely amazing and very helpful when I rang them and told them about our situation. A technician was organised to come out and he managed to fix the problem.

    It’s nice to know that humanity still exists and that they helped as soon as they could, at a reasonable price too! A huge Thank You to the great team at Emu (Shakira, Nials and Tony), we will definitely recommend your business to others as well!

    Szandra P, Happy Customer

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