There are always things that you can do to ensure that your drains are in great shape. You can occasionally flush hot water through your drains. A generous amount of vinegar and baking soda can also do wonders for your drains. And so can keeping away from flushing solids and oily liquids through your drain. However, there are times when despite a homeowners best efforts at drain maintenance, his or her drains simply keep on clogging.

If this is something you are experiencing, it may be time to have a look at the slope of your drainage pipes:

Not enough slope on your drain lines

Homeowners who resort to laying drain pipes on their own tend to make this mistake. They assume that all it takes for proper drainage is  a good pipe and a place to dump the waste. This is not the case. There is something called undersloped drains and if you have them, they may be the cause of your clogging problem.

Drains which don't have enough slope tend to clog because of they don't make enough use of the force of gravity. The waste in the drains therefore tend to take too much time to flow. It sometimes doesn't even flow at all. This usually results in the accumulation of waste deposits within the drains and thus the clogging.

To avoid an under-slopped-drain problem, you have to ensure that your pipes slope at a rate of ¼ inch per foot. This means that for every foot of horizontal length, a drain pipe should have at least an ¼ inch vertical drop.

Too much slope

While a good slope is great when it comes to ensuring that the waste in the drains moves, too much slope does no good to your drains. In fact, it can lead to frequent clogging incidences. This is so because when there is too much slope on your drains, the liquids in the waste tends to move too fast. As a result, they usually end up leaving solid deposits behind. This is what causes clogging in the drains.

During drain installation, it is advisable that you limit yourself to a slope that does not exceed a 3 inches per foot slant. Anything more than this will be enough to cause you to spend a lot of money on drain cleaners and plumbing repair.


If you have a persistent drain-clogging problem, call plumbers for help. This is because while you can do all the calculations necessary to get the slope right, dealing with drain corners and underground obstacles can be quite tricky. When it comes to drain slope mistakes, only a  professional can provide a permanent solution.