If you own or operate a commercial building, you know just how much use the plumbing system sees on a daily basis. And when it comes to drain clogs, it’s really a numbers game: the more people who use your building’s drains, the more likely it is that those drains are used improperly. What happens when people practice improper drain use? You got it: drain clogs.
At Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning, we know a blockage in your commercial drains can throw a wrench in your day. We also know that when you practice proper drain maintenance, your likelihood of dealing with blockages decreases significantly. If you’re looking for ways to prevent plumbing issues in your commercial building, check out these valuable tips.
1. Establish Plumbing Usage Guidelines for the Property
Drains don’t develop clogs for no apparent reason—people clog drains by using them improperly. And if you’re dealing with a high-traffic commercial building, you’ve got hundreds of people using the plumbing system on a daily basis. To help mitigate pipe buildup and prevent drain clogs, the first thing you must do is establish proper usage guidelines for the entire property. Ground rules should include:
● Do not flush feminine waste products down the toilet
● Do not wash oil or grease down drains
● Avoid washing solid waste down drains
● Do not allow starchy or sticky substances to wash into drains
Consider implementing signage throughout your facility to notify company personnel and visitors of your newly established guidelines. Make sure your ground rules are highly visible and positioned near frequently used drains, so all users are aware of appropriate conduct. Establishing usage guidelines also helps limit your personal liability in the event that employees or visitors do not adhere to the rules.
2. Stick to a Maintenance Drain Cleaning Schedule
Preventative maintenance is the key to maintaining clog-free drains, so if you’re not already on a routine drain cleaning schedule, now is the perfect time to establish one. If you operate a commercial building, you should have professional maintenance drain cleaning at six-month intervals. Though, in very high-traffic buildings, quarterly cleanings may be necessary.
To mitigate drain buildup, once per month, flush each drain with hot water or a combination of white vinegar and baking soda. Staying on top of drain cleanliness with monthly maintenance cleaning helps ensure sticky drain residue cannot trap incoming particles. But, while monthly cleaning certainly helps, professional drain cleaning is the only way to ensure your drains are completely free from buildup.
At Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning, we perform the following cleaning procedures to ensure your drains are debris free.
Using a high-definition camera attached to a cable, we inspect your pipes for signs of debris buildup and minor blockages. After locating areas that need attention, we can immediately eliminate the buildup within the pipes.
Using a drain snake or auger, we grind through tough buildup to clear blockages and restore normal water flow. While this technique can certainly clear a clog, it’s not technically a form of drain cleaning because it doesn’t thoroughly remove residue buildup from within the pipes. Snaking a drain is more of a reactionary rather than a preventative measure.
Drain Water Jetting
For super tough drain clogs, tree root intrusions, or sludgy buildup, water jetting is essential. Drain snaking is effective for grinding through clogs, but water jetting is the creme de la creme of drain cleaning services. Using a high-pressure jet of water, we blast through all manner of buildup within the plumbing system. Quite literally, nothing stands a chance against a high-powered commercial water jet.
3. Perform Routine Drain Camera Inspections
Routine inspections are one of the simplest things you can do to prevent commercial drain blockages. In a high-volume property, hundreds of people use the plumbing on a daily basis, which means any number of solid materials may wash down the drains throughout the day. But without routine inspections, you’ll have little idea of what might be lurking within your plumbing system.
But if you can’t visually examine the interior of your drains, how can you possibly tell what’s settled in there? At Drain Blaster Bill’s, we assess your drain health by performing camera drain inspections, which rely on high-definition cameras that we insert deep into your plumbing system.
Using the camera, we’re able to locate minor blockages and drain build up before they transform into severe drain clogs. And when we can locate a minor problem before it spirals out of control, we can reduce the number of plumbing blockages your building suffers throughout the year. If you’re maintaining high-volume drains, an annual camera drain inspection is an excellent way to help keep your plumbing clog free.
4. Use Drain Strainers
If you run a business where implementing drain strainers in sink drains or on floor drains is feasible, you should seriously consider using them. These small but mighty devices effectively trap incoming food particles, strands of hair, and any other blockage-causing solids that may end up traveling into drain openings.
At the end of each workday (or whenever they’re noticeably dirty), have your staff empty and rinse out those strainers and place them back in or on the drain openings where they belong. This one simple tip can help keep tons of stuff out of your drains and dramatically reduce your plumbing system’s likelihood of developing clogs.
5. Plunge Periodically
If you notice that any of the drains in your building are starting to get a bit slow, break out the plunger and get to work. Sometimes, all it takes is a good plunging to loosen up debris that may be slowing flow down inside the pipes. Just make sure you use the appropriate plunger for the job or it won’t be as effective as you need it to be.
Not sure which type of plunger is best for the job you need to tackle? Here’s a brief breakdown of the various types of plungers on the market and what they’re designed to do.
This type of plunger is often called a cup plunger and features a single, continuous bell with a round, flat edge. Its design makes it ideal for flat surfaces, such as sink drain and floor drain openings. While you can try to use this type of plunger on a commode drain, it probably won’t seal properly around the drain opening and won’t create enough suction to dislodge a clog.
This type of plunger features a cup-shaped rubber bell with an additional component called a flange, which is what creates a tight seal around the drain opening of a toilet.
This type of plunger can also be used to dislodge minor clogs in sink and floor drains; however, you’ll need to fold the flange inside the bell-shaped cup if you want to use it for that purpose. If you plan to use this plunger for a variety of drains, make sure you thoroughly sanitize it after every use (dunk it in bleach for best results).
This type of plunger has a vertical, accordion-like bell, as well as a flange, and it’s specifically designed for use on toilet drains. While it’s not the easiest plunger to use, it’s highly effective since it creates a tighter seal and much more suction that can quickly break up even tough toilet clogs.
Check out our other tips for fixing slow drainage to learn more about what you can do to restore normal water flow through your pipes.
6. Periodically Clean Drains With Safe DIY Methods
If you experience slow drains or are dealing with a minor clog, you may be able to address the problem with a do-it-yourself drain-clearing technique. If you happen to have a drain auger (also called a drain snake), try that first as it will likely be the most effective method you can employ.
If you don’t have an auger, try pouring an enzymatic cleaning solution into the drain opening, which uses drain-safe enzymes to help clear a clog. Whatever you do, don’t use harsh, chemical-based drain cleaning products as they can be very harsh and corrosive and may cause damage to the interior of your pipes over time.
Check out these other culprits behind pipe corrosion, so you can take measures to protect your plumbing system!
Need Commercial Drain Cleaning in the Twin Cities?
Whether you’re looking to maintain the drains in your commercial property or you’re dealing with a severe drain clog, our team at Drain Blaster Bill’s is here to serve you. We specialize in a variety of services, including clearing mainline sewer drain clogs, sink drain cleaning, toilet drain cleaning, and camera drain inspections, among others.
To learn more about how we can help you maintain your commercial drains, give our team a call at 763-913-8719 or send us a message on our contact page. Trying to price out services? Go ahead and request your free estimate, and we’ll be in touch!