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How to Clean a Floor Drain in the Basement

how to clean a floor drain in the basement

Most homeowners know how to clean a kitchen sink or bathtub drain, but how do you go about cleaning a floor drain in the basement?

If you're like most people, your home has at least one floor drain in the basement. And if you're like most people, you've probably never cleaned it!

The answer is easy: use the same technique. It may be a bit more difficult because of how deep it can be, but this blog post will give you all the steps and tools that you need to get your basement floor drains looking good as new without any trouble!

What is a Floor Drain?

basement floor drainA floor drain is an important part of every plumbing system. It is installed on the floor of a structure like a garage, basement, laundry room, or bathroom to allow water to drain away and prevent flooding.

Without a floor drain, water would just puddle on the floor and eventually seep through cracks and cause serious damage.

A floor drain is a simple but very effective way to protect your property from expensive water damage. In most cases, a floor drain is connected to the sewer system so that the water can be safely disposed of.

Types of Floor Drains

Floor drains are an important part of any drainage system, but they come in a variety of 5 different styles and types.

Shower Room Drains

Shower rooms usually have a shower room drain, which is the most popular type. They may be formed in a variety of ways, such as squares, rectangles, and circles.

The drain's capacity can be affected by this. Shower drains are generally equipped with a collar around the bottom and a membrane to prevent water from leaking out.

Universal Floor Drains

A universal floor drain has a larger capacity than a standard one. It may be used on any finished flooring surface, including in a shower. The grates are either round or square.

Indirect Waste Drains

Indirect waste drains are different from other types in that they're meant to connect to lines carrying waste material.

Rather than a grate, these drains have a big funnel, usually round or oblong. The oblong funnel is designed to accept several waste lines.

Integral Trap Floor Drains

Water travels down the trap floor drain, which includes two openings: a conventional sewer and a floor level cleanout opening.

Water goes down the drain, but it is redirected beneath the floor level cleanout before flowing through the pipe.

On floors constructed on a slope or sewers connected to a shallow sewage system, this is beneficial.

Flushing Rim Floor Drains

Rimming floor drains are utilized in health care facilities, where the sewers is part of the room cleaning procedure.

The interior surface of these drains is coated, so waste will not adhere to it and a new pipe is connected to the body of the drain, which flushes water into it to remove any remaining waste.

What Causes a Basement Floor Drain Clog?

Basement floor drains are an important part of keeping your basement dry. They are typically located in the lowest point of the basement and are used to collect and remove water that has leaked or seeped in.

However, these drains can become clogged over time, preventing them from doing their job properly.

There are a few different things that can cause a clog, such as dirt, debris, and even tree roots.

Debris, most commonly dust bunnies and pet hair, often finds its way inside the drain.

If you suspect that your drain is clogged, it's important to take care of it right away. Otherwise, you risk water damage to your basement.

Will baking soda and vinegar work?

It's a question we hear often: will baking soda and vinegar work on the floor drain in the basement?

The answer is yes - baking soda and vinegar can be used to clear a clogged floor drain. Here's how to do it:

  1. First, pour a pot of boiling water down the sewer to loosen any clogs.
  2. Next, mix together 1 cup of baking soda with 1 cup of vinegar.
  3. Add this mixture into the pipe, and then plug the drain with a rag or stopper.
  4. Let the mixture sit for 15-30 minutes, and then flush the drain with hot water.

If your floor drain is still clogged after following these steps, you may need to call a professional plumber for assistance.

What about chemical drain cleaners?

It's not uncommon for floor drains in basements to become clogged with everything from dirt and debris to soap scum and even tree roots.

And while it may be tempting to reach for a chemical drain cleaner, there are a few things you should know before using one on your basement floor drain.

Chemical drain cleaners are highly corrosive and can damage your sewer pipes if used improperly. They can help to get rid of odor.

Can You Put Drano in a Basement Floor Drain?

If you're dealing with a clogged floor drain, you may be wondering if you can use Drano to clear it out. The short answer is yes, Drano can be used on floor drains.

However, there are a few things you should keep in mind before using this product.

First of all, make sure that your floor drain is made of PVC or metal - Drano should not be used on pipes made of other materials.

Secondly, only use a small amount of Drano - too much can damage your drain. Finally, be sure to flush the drain thoroughly with water after using Drano to remove any residue.

If used properly, Drano can be an effective way to clear a clogged floor drain.

Do you a clogged floor drain? Check out our clogged drain services

What to Do if Basement Drain Backs Up?

If your basement drain backs up, don't panic! This is a common problem that can usually be fixed without too much trouble.

The first thing you'll want to do is check for any obstructions in the pipes. This could be anything from a build-up of hair and soap scum to a chunk of food that was accidentally dropped down the drain.

If you see any blockages, try to remove them with a plunger or a plumber's snake. If this doesn't work, you may need to call a professional to clear the obstruction.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Sewer and Drain Backup?

If your basement floor drain backs up, you may be wondering if your homeowners insurance will cover the damage.

The answer is that it depends on your policy - some policies do cover sewer and drain backup, while others do not.

If you're not sure whether or not your policy covers this type of damage, the best thing to do is give your insurance company a call and ask.

How Often You Should Clean a Basement Floor Drains?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as it depends on a number of factors, such as how often the sewer is used and what kind of water is going down the drain.

That being said, most experts recommend that floor drains be cleaned on a yearly basis. This will help to prevent clogs and keep your drain flowing freely.

If you live in an area with hard water, you may need to clean it more often using rubber gloves for projection. Hard water can leave deposits of minerals on the walls of your pipes, which can eventually lead to clogs.

Tips to Prevent a Basement Floor Drain From Backing Up

One of the most frustrating plumbing problems is a clogged basement floor drain. Not only is it a mess, but it can also be difficult to fix.

However, there are a few things you can do to help prevent this problem from occurring.

  1. First, make sure that your gutters and downspouts are clean and clear. This will ensure that water is directed away from your foundation and not allowed to pool around your home.
  2. Second, have your sewer line checked regularly for any blockages or leaks. If there is a problem with your sewer line, it can cause sewage to back up into your home through the floor drain.
  3. Finally, avoid discharging grease or other fats down the drain. These substances can solidify in the pipes and cause a blockage.

By following these tips, you can help keep your basement floor drain flowing freely and reduce the risk of a obstruction.

If you do experience an obstruction, don't hesitate to call a professional for assistance. They will be able to quickly identify the cause of the problem and get your drain flowing again

Frequently Asked Questions

How to clean basement drain trap?

To clean the basement drain trap, remove the P-trap cover and empty any water that is in the trap.

How to clean a smelly basement floor drain?

If your basement floor drain is smelling bad, it is likely due to a build-up of bacteria. You can clean the drain by adding a mixture of bleach and water down the drain.

Can I pour bleach down my basement drain?

Yes, you can pour bleach down your basement drain to clean it. However, you should always flush the drain with water afterward to remove any residue.

Can a basement floor drain get clogged?

Yes, a basement floor drain can become clogged over time. This is usually due to a build-up of hair, soap scum, or grease.


A floor drain in the basement can be a great way to prevent water damage using backflow valve, but it's important to keep it clean and free of any blockages.

By following the tips in this article, you can help keep your basement floor drain flowing freely and reduce the risk of obstruction.

If you do experience an obstruction, don't hesitate to call a professional for assistance. They will be able to quickly identify the cause of the problem and get your drain flowing again.

About The Author:

Scott Reyes, our proficient Managing Editor and a true plumbing aficionado with over 10 years of dedicated expertise. With an in-depth understanding of the plumbing industry, Scott is your go-to source for all things plumbing-related. His wealth of experience ensures that our content is not only informative but also a reliable resource for your plumbing needs. Dive into Scott's articles to tap into his extensive knowledge and insights.
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