How to Keep Yard Drains from Clogging: Complete Guide

The last thing you want on earth is clogged drains in your yard. Clogged drains are the most harmful thing that can happen. This moist place is the breeding ground for molds and pests. Moreover, it gives an unpleasant odor that is even harmful to inhale. Suppose the clogged drains are remained untreated for a long time. Moreover, clogged drains are very bad for your health as well. Moreover, if the drains in the yard are clogged, they also cause plumbing leaks in the pipes. So, the question is how to keep yard drains from clogging?

There are several ways to solve the clogging of yard drains. The most important is to clean the yard drains on a regular basis. By doing so, no leaves, debris, or twigs will get clogged inside the drains. Drain covers should be used so that these leaves and twigs won’t be able to get inside the drain. Gutters also need to be monitored regularly so that leaves, twigs, and debris won’t get inside there. 

How to Keep Yard Drains from Clogging

How to Keep Yard Drains from Clogging?

1. Identify Common Causes Of Clogged Yard Drains

  • The most common causes of clogging yard drains are leaves, twigs, dirt, and other debris getting inside. Mostly this happens after heavy rains or storms. Many kids drop food or food packets in the drains, which results in clogging. Many yard drains are not made to withstand high amounts of water; as a result, flooding outside the house is a high possibility. 
  • It is very important to identify the cause of the clogging of yard drains. This would enable us to prevent it from getting clogged. If lots of trees surround your ward, there are high chances of leaves and twigs falling and getting gathered in the yard drains. So it is important to clean it regularly so that a huge amount of leaves and twigs doesn’t gather. If you have pets, you must check for waste in the yard drains. 

2. Regular Cleaning And Maintenance

There are many types of tools that properly clean yard drains. Snake is the most common flexible yard drain cleaning tool with a long wire tube handle. Gloves are also helpful in removing leaves and twigs that get gathered in the drain. Plunger is also very common that is used to suction.

Regular Cleaning And Maintenance

Wire brushes are highly useful for cleaning the gunk after removing blockages from the yard drain. These can also be used with hot water and soap. Since yard drains are mostly outdoors, there is a lot of build-up due to rain and sunlight. Drain cleaning chemicals are useful for removing all this build-up from the yard drains. 

It is very important to clean yard drains. Find the catch basin and remove the cover with the help of a screwdriver. Then, with the help of your hands or a shop vacuum, reach the bottom and remove every bit of leaves, debris, twigs, and dirt. Clean the discharge area of the drain pipe in the same way it has been done with the catch basin. And now flush out with the help of a hose so that no dirt remains. In this process, yard drains are properly cleaned. 

3. Install Drain Covers And Screens

Drain covers are the most inexpensive way to prevent the clogging of yard drains from debris, leaves, twigs, and dirt. The drain cover allows the water to get inside the pipe and prevents dirt and debris from going inside. Inspecting and cleaning drain covers regularly is important so that they last a long time and do their job properly.

Install Drain Covers And Screens

You can get wooden, metal, or wire drain covers. You can also make one for yourself based on the diameter of your yard drain. Apart from these, other types are available such as atrium grates, trench grates, and catch basins. Atrium grates are used only in areas where leaves and all other types of debris are usually washed toward the drain, where all these can clog the grate.

Trench grates, also known as channel grates, usually cover a horizontal trench drain. It doesn’t cover a single round drain pipe. They can withstand a large amount of water from heavy rain or storm. Drain covers are mostly used when they are directly installed immediately on top of the drain riser pipe. This way, the drain grate is connected to a catch basin fixed just under the grate. 

Choosing the right drain cover for your yard drain is essential, or else it won’t fit properly. For that, it is essential to measure the diameter of the yard drain, and based on the diameter, you need to purchase the drain cover. 

4. Proper Landscaping And Planting

The proper landscape of the yard and planting trees in a planned way prevent the yard drains from clogging. The most renowned solution to clogged drains is to route the rainwater to the low area in your yard so that the water can naturally flow away from the house over the rocks through a dry creek bed.

Proper Landscaping And Planting

Moreover, in case of heavy rain or storms, the debris is washed away because the excess water is collected in the catch basin. Another issue with clogged drains is that uneven pitch or slope in the yard blocks water diversion from the house. So if these issues are taken care of, the yard won’t have clogged drains. 

Moreover, if the trees are planted away from the yard drains, there won’t be any dry leaves and twigs collected in the yard drains. The slope construction should be properly constructed so that the water flow should be towards the drain so that water doesn’t clog up. Furthermore, if you want to plant trees near the yard drains, it is advised not to plant big trees beside them. If you plant small flowering plants, there will be less chance of clogging inside the yard drains. 

5. Address Animal Waste

Apart from dry leaves and twigs getting gathered in the yard drains, animal waste collection is another common reason for clogging yard drains. Animal wastes gathered on yard drains block water passage from flowing properly, thereby clogging the drains. Moreover, the addition of animal wastes adds to bad odor not only in the yard but also in the house as well, and it is also the breeding ground for harmful bacteria and worms. 

Address Animal Waste

The best way to prevent animal waste from clogging the yard drains is to clean the yard drains daily and collect animal waste daily. By doing so, there won’t be any chance of blockage of water passage and hence no clogging. The best is to make a separate place in the yard where your pets can poop and pee so that animal wastes won’t be gathered in the yard drains. Moreover, one should have strong fencing, so that wild animals do not enter the yard.

6. Use Biodegradable Products

You should never throw non-biodegradable products such as wet tissues, paper towels, sanitary napkins, plastic covers, and wraps in the yard drains. All these never decompose and hence result in clogged drains. Moreover, all these non-biodegradable products need to be burned, which causes pollution and is harmful to the environment. 

The best part of using biodegradable products in the yard is that they break down naturally and decompose over time. The soil and other natural components further consume them. This doesn’t pollute the environment as you don’t have to burn. 

You can use biodegradable products like organic fertilizers, egg shells, and biodegradable kitchen wastes near the yard so that these decompose naturally, don’t clog the drains and are not harmful to the environment. 

How often should you clean outdoor drains?

If you have pets in your house, and they have the habit of pooping anywhere in the yard, including yard drains, then you need to clean animal wastes from the yard drains daily. However, if you don’t have pets but have trees in the yard, you need to clean outdoor drains weekly. This will ensure that no old leaves, twigs, debris, or dirt is collected in the yard drains, eventually resulting in clogged drains. 

You may also read: How Deep Can You Dig In Your Backyard? | How To Fix A Muddy Spot In The Yard?


Yards are the most beautiful part of your garden, and they should be maintained properly to retain their beauty. Ensure that the yard should be kept clean and have proper water passage so they don’t clog. Moreover, there should not be any leaves, twigs, debris, dirt, or animal wastes getting gathered on yard drains for a long time. That’s all you should know if you were wondering how to keep yard drains from clogging? 

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