How To Clean The Main Drain


The main drain is the primary line responsible for flushing out water from your property. In order for the water to be disposed of properly, the main drain connects to a sewer system and is a vital part of any efficient sewage system. In order to prevent clogging though, people need to make sure they detect and repair any issues that may arise in time. If they’re not identified in a timely manner, these initially small problems can lead to flooding.

Why do main drains clog?

Drain can clog for many reasons: the materials used in the pipes, the structure of the property, and the angle of the pipes to the main drains and even the trees and the soil in the yard. Any of these elements can lead to the clogging of the main drain and therefore need to be checked properly by a professional plumber before assessing exactly the part of the main drain that is clogged. On top of that, the clogging generally happens somewhere down the pipe between the house and the street or under the property.

Calling a professional plumber

Calling a licensed plumber is mandatory if your main drain is clogged, since he has the experience and the equipment necessary to clean the main drain. This is in no way a job that can be handled by a homeowner not only due to its complexity, but also because it requires experience and equipment a regular homeowner doesn’t have.

Job cost

Cost is directly influenced by the complexity of the job. Since the main drain is usually under the ground, often below patios, driveways, lawns or gardens, the cost of replacing/repairing/unclogging it can range quite a lot. If the plumber needs to jackhammer and excavate your yard you can expect to foot a fairly large bill, but if he can reach the pipes and replace them without having to do that, the cost will be lower.

DIY vs. hiring a plumber

Trying to complete this project on your own would require that you have lots of plumbing experience. Attempting to do it without having prior experience generally takes much longer than if you’d hire a professional plumber; the risk of damaging something else in the process is high.

Price range

Unclogging the main drain can be easy or it can be complicated and this only remains to be determined by the plumber after he assessed the complexity of the problem. However, in general you can expect to pay anywhere between $150-$450 for cleaning/unclogging and up to $4,500 or even more to have the main drain unclogged and repaired\replaced if necessary.

What to watch out for

It’s absolutely necessary that you hire an experienced and insured plumber to fix or unclog your main drain. This way you have the peace of mind that if anything goes wrong in the process, his insurance company can pay for the damages. While some people may want to try and complete these repairs on their own, such projects are usually very complex and can only be considered by professional plumbers who also have the right equipment for the job.

Hiring the right contractor

Lastly, to make sure the contractor you want to hire is the right one for the job, make sure he has at least 5 years of experience under his belt, ask for his portfolio and make sure he is certified and insured.