Cleaning Clogged Basement Drain Lines

What You'll Need
Drain snake
LED flashlight
Safety glasses
Safety mask
Latex gloves
Compressed air can
Old clothing
Rubber boots
Water vacuum
Plumber's foam

Every single home you go into that has a basement will have a basement drain installed. If your home does not have a basement then whatever passes for the laundry area will most likely have a drain it. All the water and waste from the home winds up flowing through basement drain. The waste that flows through a basement drain will find its last stop to be the main sewer lines of where you live or to a holding tank on your property. Over time the basement drain will build up materials that can cause the drain pipe to become congested. This congestion will cause waste to back up and flow out of your basement drain. The article that follows will show you how to clean the basement drain.

Step 1 - Rule Out the Other Pipes

Before you commence fixing a clogged basement drain you need to make sure the clog is not present anywhere else in the home. Work from the basement up by flushing all of the toilets and running the sinks. If the drains backup or the toilet doesn't empty then a clog is also present in those lines. If the trouble is in the basement drain then sewage and dirty water will come out of the drain cover.

Step 2 - Initial Cleaning

Put on your boots, old clothing and your other safety gear. Any waste you make contact with has the potential to cause physical harm to you. Go from toilet to toilet and drain to drain first using the flashlight to inspect the drain then using the compressed air to loosen debris that may be built up inside those pipes. Do the same thing using plumber's foam. This material consists of two chemicals. Alone they do not really do much but once they make contact they begin to foam and expand. This eats away and removes caked on waste. This will most likely flood the basement drain. Remove any standing water or debris in the basement using wet vacuum.

Step 3 - Unclogging the Basement Drain

Now that you are certain the other drains are not a problem you can turn your attention toward the basement drain. Remove the drain cap. You will either have to use the screwdriver or the wrench to remove it and that is determined by the type of drain cap you have. Place the drain machine about six inches away from the basement drain. Pull out the cable and put it inside the basement drain. Set the machine to reverse and then turn it on. Move the drain cleaning machine forward and backward when you feel tension or a barrier against the line. If the drain machine comes to a complete stop then you need to turn the drain machine and reverse motor's direction. Remove the line and put it back in the drum. Flush the toilets and use the faucets again to ensure no water comes from the basement drain.