How often do you maintain the floor drains in your commercial building? Every six months? Annually? Less often? If floor drain maintenance isn’t at the top of your to-do list, you’re not alone. Many commercial building owners neglect maintenance drain cleaning, not because they aren’t aware it’s necessary, but because often, what’s out of sight remains out of mind.
At Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning, we’re here to remind you that when it comes to commercial drains, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. If you’re not quite up to speed on how to take proper care of the floor drains in your commercial building, we’re sharing a few helpful tips below.
Maintain P-Traps Regularly
Like residential drains, commercial floor drains feature P-traps to prevent foul-smelling sewer gases from wafting up through the pipes and into your building. And, much like a residential drain, a commercial floor drain P-trap is designed to contain a healthy quantity of water, which forms the barrier between gases in the pipe and the opening of the drain. However, if that water evaporates (typically due to infrequent use) you’ll notice a less-than-pleasant odor emanating from the drain opening.
To prevent this issue, periodically pour plain water or slightly soapy water into the drain openings that see the most infrequent use. Though the water in each drain’s p-trap typically requires several weeks to evaporate completely, practicing proactive maintenance is never a bad idea.
Avoid Sweeping or Pouring Debris Into the Drain
Depending on the nature of your commercial building, employees or maintenance staff may be tempted to dispose of debris by sweeping or pouring it into the drain. Caution: Never do this!!
Floor drains are not designed to handle solid debris of any kind, nor are they designed to handle any type of oily liquid. While the rare mishap won’t necessarily cause a problem, over time, solid debris and oil-based waste can form severe drain clogs that threaten the health of your building’s plumbing system.
To avoid a major plumbing problem, inform staff members of proper drain usage guidelines if you haven’t already. And, ideally, post those guidelines in a highly visible area to ensure anyone using the building adheres to the rules.
Periodically Flush Drains With Hot Water
Insects and other unwelcome pests are attracted damp, dark environments, which makes a commercial floor drain the perfect home for these critters. Too, bacterial and fungal growths thrive in dank environments, creating unpleasant odors and contributing to drain blockages and poor water flow.
To prevent pests and organic growths from taking over your floor drains, periodically flush them with plenty of hot water. Hot water effectively kills organic growths, which are often attractants for all manner of pests. And, if you suspect pests are living inside your drains, they won’t withstand a hot water flush either.
When performed on a monthly basis, hot water flushes are also a great way to mitigate debris buildup inside your drains. To help keep drain blockages at bay, set aside one evening per month to perform routine drain cleaning using nothing but hot water. You may be surprised at the amount of gunk a simple water flush can loosen.
Mitigate Drain Buildup With Natural Solutions
If you suspect your floor drains contain substantial buildup, whatever you do, do not turn to chemical drain cleaners to solve the problem. Chemical cleaners are highly caustic, meaning they naturally deteriorate the interior of your pipes over time. If hot water flushes cannot effectively loosen the grime, try performing a flush with baking soda and vinegar. Here’s how to do it:
● Start by pouring very hot (preferably boiling) water into the drain opening to soften existing buildup.
● Pour one cup of baking soda into the drain.
● Pour a solution of one cup white vinegar and one cup tap water into the drain.
● Cover the drain opening with a drain plug and wait 5 to 10 minutes for the natural chemical reaction to take place.
● Flush the drain using very hot (preferably boiling) water.
Periodic treatments with hot water, baking soda, and vinegar can help mitigate drain buildup in between professional cleanings, which should be conducted at least once per year. However, if your drains are very slow and natural cleaning solutions don’t do the trick, the best course of action is to bring in professional drain cleaners.
Hire Professional Drain Cleaners
While professional drain cleaning should always be an annual occurrence, sometimes, once yearly cleanings aren’t enough to prevent slow drains or complete blockages. Depending on the nature of the building, drain usage frequency, and a variety of other factors, certain drains are simply more prone to clogs than others.
If you know your floor drains fall into that category, it may behoove you to schedule biannual maintenance drain cleaning, performed by the professionals. Unlike self-performed, routine drain maintenance, professional cleaning offers more advanced tools and techniques designed to keep drains free from buildup and blockages, including:
● Camera drain inspections. Prior to a professional drain cleaning procedure, a technician will examine the interior of your pipes to determine the exact location and severity of the blockage. Even in the absence of a severe blockage, a camera drain inspection is a useful tool for assessing and maintaining drain health.
● Commercial water jetting. Removes even the most severe drain blockages without damaging the interior of your pipes. Using a pressurized jet of water combined with non-hazardous, abrasive cleaning materials, water jetting effectively clears all manner of buildup from within the affected drain.
● Maintenance drain cleaning. Using the appropriate combination of camera inspections, regular drain cleaning (typically snaking) or water jetting, professional cleaning techniques help maintain functional, long-lasting floor drains over the long term.
Dealing With a Tough Drain Blockage? Contact Drain Blaster Bill’s Today
If you’re facing tough drain clogs in your commercial building, it’s time to get in touch with our team at Drain Blaster Bill’s Sewer & Drain Cleaning. We specialize in advanced commercial drain cleaning services, including snaking, water jetting, mainline sewer drain cleaning, and much more, so no matter the severity of the clog, we can clear it. And, to ensure your complete satisfaction, we offer full guarantees on all of our work.
To learn more about our commercial drain cleaning services or to schedule your appointment, give our team a call at 763-913-8719. You can also get in touch with us via our contact form, and a member of our team will reach out to you promptly. Ready to get started? Feel free to request your free estimate today!