When that kitchen sink is all bunged up, we all know what to do. A minute or two with a plunger. A kettle or two of boiling water. A bit of gunk-fishing with our fingers. Some baking soda and vinegar … and Bob’s your uncle. It’s all a little more difficult and complicated, though, if it’s not your kitchen or bathroom sink that’s backed up with hair, soap, food scraps and grease – but it’s an outside drain that has become hopelessly blocked. Today, then, we’re going to take a closer look at the question of how to unblock a drain outside.
Perhaps you’ve been alerted to the problem by an odd drain smell coming from somewhere outside your doors and windows. Maybe you can visibly see the need for an outside drain unblocker due to pooling or standing water. But it may not be an ordinary water or stormwater drain, but an overflowing sewer drain that’s not just creating a stench and a putrid mess but one heck of a potential health issue.
Not to worry, though, because there’s a pretty good chance you can learn how to unblock a drain pipe outside all by yourself (just like how you learn to unblock your sink drains all by yourself). In some cases, though, it might not even be your responsibility to go about unblocking drains outside, because you only need to worry about the private drains on your property. If you think it’s the council or the utility company’s problem, make sure to check.
However, in most cases, though, you will need to look into how to unblock drains outside – especially if you’ve let your maintenance schedule slip and your drains have become clogged up with tree debris, mud, moss and other gunk and objects. Another reason for your clogged outside drains could have been all that flushing of oil, fat and grease down your inside drains, that recent spate of downpours and storms, or a physical problem or breakage within your plumbing system.
How to unblock a drain outside in 6 simple steps
If you just want to get onto the part about how to clear blocked drains outside with some simple and ingenious DIY, here’s some good news – you’ve arrived at that section of our blog!
1. Where’s the blockage?
Obviously, you need to start somewhere, but understanding the location and type of blockage is initially important to determine the responsibility for fixing it. If you’re not sure, the best thing to do is to call the council and ask, but generally, if the problem’s clearly on your grounds, it’s your deal.
2. Grab your gear
Welcome to your new skill as a DIY outside drain unblocker! You’ll need some rubber gloves and, if you’re really safe, some protective glasses. Also, have on hand:
- A drain rod or plumber’s auger (also known as a drain snake)
- A screwdriver
- A hose (ideally a high pressure jetter)
3. Remove the drain cover
In most cases, the most you’ll need to do this is a screwdriver.
4. Use your hands
First, let’s use those gloved hands and see how much debris you can remove simply by going fishing into that blocked outside drain.
5. Use the drain rod
Using this amazing tool is simple enough – just insert, apply pressure, twist, plunge and repeat. Pat yourself on the back when you feel like you’re making progress in smashing up those blockage.
6. Use your hose
One of every professional plumber’s most trusty tools is a high-pressure jet rodder – because it can simply be directed into a drain with its incredible power to blast just about any obstruction away. But even with the garden hose on full blast, the softening up you did with the drain rod or auger may now be ready to wash away with a stream of fast-moving water.
How did you go? Great DIY success? Or do you need a bit of help from an affordable local Gold Coast plumber?
Call your professional outside drain unblocker today
You’ll be relieved to know that, here at Gold Coast Plumbing Experts, we can almost always clear and/or repair every single inside or outside drain issue in a single visit, using our highly-trained and licensed skills and state-of-the-art professional drain cleaning tools, equipment & products. Better still, we always offer fair, fixed pricing and guarantee the quality of our workmanship for LIFE.
Is the task, or even just the very idea of unblocking drains outside giving you a headache? Give the friendly blocked drain plumbing team at Gold Coast Plumbing Experts a call today … and we’ll be right there!