Main Drain Clog: Toronto & the GTA


A home’s main drain line is the place a house’s drains send the waste water. All the water using appliances in a home have drains that lead to a pipe outside the home which sends the waste water to the sewer system. Most modern homes have a place of access to this main line somewhere on the property. The pipes create a Y-shape. Sewer line work is one of the areas where a professional is the best idea. Clogs in a main drain are often signs of bigger problems than the average homeowner is able to fix.

How Do I Know the Main Drain is the Problem?

Main drain problems will be noticeable throughout the house. Waste water and sewage will back up into drains. Using one appliance will cause a chain reaction in the house. Toilets will “gargle” and strange noises will be everywhere there is a drain. Main drain clogs are by far the messiest problem in a home. Any sewer problem has a tell-tale smell that invades the home. If you can smell sewer gas, then there is a clog somewhere.

What Causes the Clogs?

Main drains are clogged by large amounts of waste and paper products. Other causes can be outside the home. Pipes can break and disrupt the system. Trees on the property can also get so big that the roots invade the pipes. Many plumbing companies offer a camera inspection service. This service is suggested to find the problems with a sewer line and a main drain. Sometimes a camera inspection can catch a problem before it gets worse.

How Do I Fix a Main Drain?

1, Start by finding the drain clean out in your home. It will be either outside of the house or in the basement. The pipes will make a Y-shape with cap on top.

  1. Use a pipe wrench to unscrew the cap. If there is a problem there will probably be a burst of water.
  2. When the water stops use an auger to fish out the clog.
  3. If there isn’t a clog in the drain clean out, then it’s time to call a professional.

An alternate clean out process involves flushing the main drain with a garden hose. This might work for small clogs, but an auger would probably be the cleanest option.

Sewer problems are often best handled by the city or a professional. If a clog is down off the property call the city. Often a city clog will affect multiple houses and there are often plans to fix it already. Although cleaning out a main drain is a straight forward process, there is something to be said for calling a professional plumber. After all professionals have the best tools for the job.