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Why Your Drain Tile Should Be Cleaned


by Darlene Waters

There are many early homes built without any drain tile. In the 50’s and 60’s basement drain tile or another name French drain was made of clay. When sentiment and tree roots clog this type of tile it usually cannot be cleaned as it breaks very easily.  Later, the use of black corrugated flex pipe was used.  This type becomes plugged solid over time.  When plugged, it is also hard to clean (or impossible to clean) as it punctures easily.  In these instances the homeowner would need to have the drain tile replaced.

Drain Tile or another name French Drain completely pugged.

Clay Tile that is completely plugged

When drain tile or French drain becomes clogged and can no longer accept water from the walls or under the floor properly, water will collect on the basement floor.  The water will be coming in on the floor where the basement wall(s) and floor meet; usually, this will begin in the corner that is the furthest from your sump basin.

 

Drain Tile / French Drain Installation

 

Waters Basement Services would need to replace the drain tile with a white perforated drain tile to collect the wall and floor water into the sump basin and then be pumped out of the basement.  Clean-outs would be installed in the drain tile to enable the drain tile to be cleaned.  Drain tile should be cleaned at least once a year; or more often depending on your soil type.  With the clean-outs the homeowner can clean their drain tile with a garden hose or have Waters Basement Services perform this service.  Also as important is proper grading along the foundation and gutter downspout placement. You always want water to shed away from your home. Waters Basement Services will re-grade around a homeowner’s foundation and install Lawn Scape Bubbler Pot on gutters to keep water from collecting around the foundation.

Drain tile is the most important ingredient in effective basement waterproofing.  In order to operate properly, your drain tile needs to be free of debris that can build up over time. Basement floor drains work the same. They need to free of debris and be able to flow out into the storm drain.  When the storm drain becomes overwhelmed with storm water, this water will pour into your basement. You can plug the floor drain, which prevents water from entering your basement when storm sewers become overwhelmed and cannot take water out.

As you can see, drain cleaning and basement waterproofing go hand-in-hand.  By keeping your drain tile, basement floor drain, and sewer main properly cleaned and free of clogs and obstruction, you can make a flooding emergency much less likely; even during heavy rains.

For more information on cleaning drain tile systems, take a look at our services page.