Many homeowners underestimate the complexity of the plumbing system in their homes. Modern plumbing systems are more than just pipes and fixtures. Many components and systems have to work in tandem to produce the home plumbing experience that people expect. The main clean out is an example of a piece of the plumbing infrastructure that many homeowners don’t know about. In this brief article, we’ll discuss why the house’s main cleanout is so essential, and where it can be found.
A home’s plumbing infrastructure is connected to the more extensive sewer system that’s maintained by the city. If there are clogs in the municipal sewer pipes, the local government will handle it. However, if the clog is related to issues with the plumbing in the house, then the homeowner has to handle the problem on their own. The main cleanout is a junction that connects a home’s sewer line to the larger municipal one. If you know where the main cleanout access port is, it’s easier for your (or a qualified plumber from Elite Plumbing Services) to quickly remove any obstructions within the sewer pipe and restore flow in the sewer system.
Many potential scenarios can lead to clogs in your plumbing system. Many of these issues can be solved with a plunger or drain snake if the problem resides in just one pipe. However, if the main sewer line that carries waste from the house to the city sewer system gets clogged, you will experience problems throughout the home. For example, such a clog leads to a floor drain backing up so that foul or having sewage-laden water comes up from the drains.
Knowing where the main cleanout is can save homeowners money when they need to have sewage problems addressed. Fixing an issue with the main sewer line is easier if there is an accessible cleanout. The main cleanout is the best place to clear a main sewer line stoppage. If the plumber can’t access the main sewer line from the main cleanout, it will cost more to get the work completed.
For the most part, every house should have a main cleanout. However, some houses don’t. Builders have including these cleanouts for decades since they are the best place to use a drain snake or motorized auger to dislodge the clog in the main drain line. Though main cleanouts are ubiquitous in modern homes, they aren’t always in the same place. The location of this fixture within a home varies on the house style and the geographic climate of the area. Here are some tips for locating your main drain:
Houses that are constructed in warm climates often have the main cleanout fitting is outside, usually near the exterior walls of the home. If you’re trying to find your cleanout, try looking behind bushes or in a metal or plastic box recessed into the ground. The piece you’re looking for is usually a large-diameter pipe with a threaded plug in the top. It may be extending above the ground near an outside wall or may be contained inside a ground box covered by a metal cover.
In a Bathroom or Utility Area
Another common location for the main cleanout in homes with slab foundations is in a bathroom, usually on the floor near the toilet, or in a garage or utility area, usually near a floor drain. To prevent accidents, these cleanouts have their threaded plug flush-mounted into the floor or threaded into a short length of large-diameter pipe extending up from the floor. In homes that have basements, the main cleanout fixture is located in the below-ground space. Another thing to keep in mind is that larger homes often have multiple cleanout fittings. Each of these fittings is for different drain pipes, so it’s essential to know where all of them are before planning a repair.
If you need help cleaning a stubborn clog, or your sewage is backing up, Elite Plumbing Services can help. Whether’s it’s a localized problem restricted to a single drain, or your entire plumbing stem is clogged, we have the skill and expertise to get everything back in working order. Send us a message online to discuss any plumbing issues you may have.