Finding Plumbing Issues Early

How To Deal With A Clogged Garage Floor Drain

by Chris Bowman

If your garage has water on the floor that's not draining away, the floor drain could be clogged. Clearing out a clogged garage floor drain is a lot like cleaning out a shower drain, except you may find dirt, decaying matter, and other mysterious debris in a garage drain. Here are some ways to try to clear the drain before you call a plumber for help:

Find Out If Water Is Backing Up From The Sewer

You'll need to take the screen off the top of the drain, and to do that you'll need to see the screws. If the drain is covered with clear water, push it out the door to dry the area as much as possible. However, if water is coming up the drain and spilling on the floor, you'll want to be careful -- depending on the way your plumbing is set up, the contents coming up your garage drain might be from a main sewer line clog. If so, the drain and contents are toxic and it's best to let a plumber handle the situation. It might be necessary to hydro jet the sewer line to clear the clog so the garage drain will empty again.

Pull Debris Out Of The Drain

If you were able to move the water out of the way and remove the screen on the drain, try to dig out any clogs you can reach near the top of the opening. Be sure to wear gloves in case the contents of the drain are contaminated. You might be able to pull out a leaf, hair, paper, or fabric clog that's blocking the drain. Once you've cleaned out as much as you can, pour water down the drain to see if the drain empties fast.

Try Hot Water

If that didn't work, try pouring hot water down the drain. You'll need water that's heated on the stove but not boiling because you don't want to damage the pipe with water that's too hot. Try to get a bucket full of hot water and then pour it in with a smaller container so the water doesn't just spill over and get wasted. Hot water is often good at breaking up clogs, and if you keep at it then you might get your drain flowing again.

If pulling out debris and flushing the drain with hot water doesn't work, it's time to try mechanical means of busting through the clog. If you have a hand-crank snake you keep on hand for plumbing emergencies, try using it on the floor drain to loosen the clog. If you don't have a snake or if the snake doesn't work then call a plumber. The plumber can figure out what's causing the clog and then use a commercial snake or a hydro jet to fix the problem.

Reach out to a plumbing company in your area for more information.