Upgrading Your Pipes

Special Issues With Cleaning Floor Drains In Your Basement And How To Address Them

In some older homes, there are floor drains in the basement floor. When a homeowner did not want to contend with a sump pump to keep a basement dry, a house was built with drains in the floor that connect to the house's plumbing. The drains collect the excess water in the basement and channel it out of the house to the city sewer system. While this is generally efficient, there are often problems with sewage back-flow, and/or clogs and messes in and around these drains. Additionally, there are some special issues with cleaning these floor drains. Here are those issues and how to address them.

Shortened Drain Pipes

You cannot see through the concrete floor of your basement. If you could, you may discover that the floor drains have shortened drain pipes. Shortened drain pipes are always an issue when sewage back-flow spills back onto your basement floor. They are also a problem if your basement floods because the drains cannot drain the excess water fast enough.

When you want to clean these shortened drains, you have to be careful with the amount of cleaner you use, since the cleaner will take some time to work its way down, and may back up into your basement with the next heavy rainstorm. Start with a very small amount of cleaner, maybe about a cup's worth. Wait a few days. Then add a little more. If you hire a plumber to "root-clean" the drain, that is a safer and less messy way to go about it. It is also a better idea when you do not know if you have shortened drain pipes or not. (The plumber can confirm this while while providing drain cleaning services.)

Being Mindful of Corrosive Cleaners

Sure, concrete flooring can take a beating, but if you are using a highly corrosive drain cleaner, it could eat away at the concrete (not to mention the drain pipes!). These types of cleaners should only be used when there is a severe clog that is preventing the drains from doing their jobs. Even then you want to be careful with the amount you use.

If the clog clears, then you will need to clean around the openings of the drains, and you want to avoid getting those clog cleaners on your skin. Also, be careful about which cleaners you use to clean around the floor drains after the clog cleaner as these might have a very bad interaction with each other. You are just better off having a plumber, such as from Calhoun Plumbing , deal with the clog so that you can clean up the mess afterward with whatever cleaner you see fit.