Restaurant Drain Cleaning: 3 Things Every BOH Manager Should Know

image of drain in a floor for restaurant drain cleaning

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Restaurant drain cleaning is (hopefully) not the biggest thing on your mind as a Back-of-House restaurant manager. We know you have your hands full day-to-day operations and putting out fires (hopefully only figurative ones, but we know you’ve put out at least one in your career). Our 80 plus years in a restaurant drain cleaning business has us seeing a lot of drain and plumbing issues and we wanted to give you 3 tips to help you have a few less emergencies. 

Restaurant Drain Cleaning Tip 1: Cover Floor and Sink Drains 

Most kitchen floor drains are recessed and/or grated and the grates are critical! If you see one missing, make it a priority to get it re-covered. This prevents large items from going down the drain and causing a clog. The clog prevents water from going down and this means a slipping hazard. Make a policy that food waste goes in the trash can only, not mopped into the drain. Wet items are ok, but solids are a no-no. 

Like floor drains, sink strainers work to keep solids out of the drains. Scoop larger items out of the sink and throw them in the trash. Never push food or debris through the strainer, even on a sink with a garbage disposal. Replace missing or damaged sink strainers as soon as possible. This helps prevent sink line and floor drain back-ups. When the water doesn’t go down, it makes sanitation impossible which can halt business.

Halted business due to drain failure is awful. Which brings us to our second drain cleaning tip for restaurants: 

Restaurant Drain Cleaning Tip 2: Perform Preventative Service 

Preventative maintenance helps keep lines open when a customer or employee decides to put too much junk in a drain. Some areas we recommend preventative service on includes: 

  • Soda machine drains. Clear out sugar buildup and trash swept or shoved into the lines. 
  • Floor drains. Ongoing cleaning of restaurant floor drains keeps things flowing further down the line and moving the right direction. The frequency of this service is based on your needs, such as the volume of what goes down, the number of drains, etc. 
  • Grease trap lines. Clearing the lines leading to the grease trap is an important preventive service for restaurant managers to stay on top of. Have the trap pumped as needed, and give the lines a good hydro-jetting to keep them clear and less smelly. 

The bonus of preventative maintenance is that it can be done before or after restaurant hours. Restaurant drain cleaning after business hours? Heck yes!

Restaurant Drain Cleaning Tip 3: Stay on top of bathrooms 

Customers tend to treat restaurant / public bathrooms in ways they would never treat their own. Put trash cans in ladies room stalls and encourage trash to not go in the toilet. Avoid putting anything on the toilet lid. Remove items nearby that could fall in or be flushed that shouldn’t be (this includes wipes, air fresheners, etc.) 

Consider air blowers rather than paper towels. Keep every bathroom equipped with a plunger and a cleaning station. Check them regularly.


Are you looking for help with your restaurant drains?

Garvin’s Plumbing and Sewer can help. Serving the Greater Denver and Boulder areas since 1940, we are one of the best kept secrets in the drain industry. We are big enough for same day service, and small enough to offer competitive pricing, especially for commercial restaurant drain cleaning needs.

To schedule a service call or ask questions, give us a call today at 303-571-5114.

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