How to Unclog Outside Drain Pipes & Prevent Damage

Posted by

Proper grading can go a long way toward preventing issues with standing water in outdoor spaces, but for flatter expanses, you may also need a suitable drainage system to siphon away water and protect landscaping from flooding and subsequent damage. Even so, you may periodically experience issues like an outside drain clogged with dirt and debris that causes backups and flooding.

Whether you have issues with landscape drains, or you need to find out how to unclog a French drain, you’ll be glad to hear that this common problem can be relatively easy to solve, especially with professional assistance.

Signs Your Outdoor Drain is Clogged

Generally, it’s not too difficult to spot an outdoor drain clogged with mud because it will start to back up, resulting in visible pooling. However, if water is still getting through in a trickle, backup could seep into the soil surrounding the drainage pipe, leading to soggy soil, areas of overly lush growth, foul odors, and the presence of mold, mildew, or fungus.

If you’re not certain you have a clogged yard drain because there’s no visible pooling, look for these clues of an outside drain clogged with dirt, debris, or roots.

Dangers of a Clogged Landscape Drainage Pipe

Landscape drainage operates on a straightforward system. Drainage consist of piping, tiling or an underground catch basin that collects excess water and funnels it away from your property, often to a termination point at the street, a drainage field, or some other safe runoff point.

A clogged landscape drainage pipe can result in significant damage and expense if left untended. First, you may experience flooding from an outside drain blocked by mud or debris. This can ruin landscaping and seep into the base of your structure, leading to water damage, rot, mold, and other issues as a result.

In addition, a landscape or backyard drain clogged with debris could cause unseen damage to the drainage system itself. Significant blockages could cause pressure to build and pipes to crack or collapse. This can lead to further yard damage and greater expense for repairs.

Whether you have exterior drainage for a commercial or residential property, you need to clean and inspect regularly so you don’t end up with a yard or driveway drain clogged with substantial mud. While you can, of course, unclog outdoor drain pipes as needed, this is a good example of an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure.

How to Unclog an Outside Drain

In some cases, figuring out how to unclog outdoor drain pipes is relatively easy, and you could save some money with a DIY approach. However, severe blockages or damage to the drainage system will probably require professional help to address. For landscape drainage installation in Houston, contact our team at Zodega TIS.

outside drain clogged with mud

Here are a few things you can try first when you experience a yard drain pipe clogged with dirt or detritus.

– Remove Debris at the Opening

Your drain pipe will have some kind of grate over the opening to catch large debris like leaves, twigs, and so on. Like your gutters, these grates need to be cleaned regularly to avoid a clogged outdoor drain pipe. Simply cleaning grates regularly could go a long way toward preventing flooding and damage to landscaping.

– Check Cleanouts and Termination Point

All drainage systems feature a termination point (where water drains out), and many also have cleanouts or inspection portals at regular intervals so you can easily access drainage to check for clogs or damage.

If you’ve already cleaned the opening of your drain and there’s still backup, check cleanouts and the termination point next to see if you can spot and remove other areas of blockage.

– Snake or Hose Out Drains

If you’ve ever used a snake to unclog indoor drains, you can try the same approach with outdoor drains. The only caveat is that snakes are relatively useful for clogs like leaves and twigs that can be grabbed and pulled out en masse – they’re not so good with clumped dirt and mud. For dirt or mud, you might need a professional to use a hydro-jet or other method to clear the blockage.

– Flush Periodically

If you keep your drains squeaky clean with regular flushing, you’ll never have to learn how to unclog an outside drain pipe. There’s a lot to be said for preventive maintenance if you want to spare hassle and expense in the long run.

Seek Professional Help

If you can’t clear a blockage on your own, or you’re not keen on getting your hands dirty, it’s time to contact experts in drainage and storm drain cleaning. The qualified professionals at Zodega TIS can assess the cause of your clog, address damage, and get your system back in working order.

The talented team at Zodega also offers custom residential landscaping in Houston, as well as ongoing residential lawn services in Houston.

Whether you need landscaping, irrigation, or drainage services, contact our experienced team at 713-480-2372 or contact us online today to learn more and get a quote.