Plumbing DIY Tips & Tricks

How to Clear a French Drain

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- By Russell Jones

Unclog your French drain and keep your home's foundation dry with our step-by-step guide.  Learn how to clear a French drain easily and effectively in our latest blog post!

What’s a French Drain?

French drains work thanks to their “perforated pipe.”  Groundwater falls into the holes and drains out away thanks to the downward sloping pipe.

Steps for French Drain Clearing

The following steps will help you clear your French Drain and keep it flowing freely for years to come.

1: Test The French Drain

Before you start clearing your french drain, we first need to make sure the french drain is actually the problem. Run a hose in it and check for clogs.

2: Rent an Electric Sewer Snake

A “sewer snake” isn’t some kind of terrifying super animal that presents a threat to humanity. It’s just a tool used by plumbers to clear out drains.

3: Get Prepared

Before you get started, you got to get prepared first. To clean a french drain, you’ll need the a bunch of tools which are all available at home improvement centers.

4: Uncover The Lid & Feed the Electric Snake

Locate the access point once again and uncover the lid. Once you’ve opened it up, you can start to feed the snake cable into the drain.

5: Run It All The Way

This is probably the most straightforward step. Continue to monitor the snake as it makes its way through the clogged french drain, and keep an eye out for any sudden stops.

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