The right way: drain cleaning and maintenance

Krissie Callahan

Most businesses have an area with floor drains – kitchens, bathrooms, janitor/housekeeping closet drains, production floors, and more. It’s likely that your employees and possibly even you don’t think much about them. However, if you fail to include these drains in your routine cleaning and maintenance plan, they could be contributing to pest problems.

drain cleaning

How floor drains become a source for pest problems

Floor drains are a common source point for a lot of drainage – and it’s very rarely just water. These drains often accumulate a buildup of organic matter, both inside the drain itself and in any covers, cracks, and gaps in the floor around the drain. This organic matter and debris is an ideal food source for many pests and is especially attractive to small flies (fruit flies, drain flies, and other species) which can lay their eggs in organic debris and film.


Grout, tile, and floor condition – and drain grates or lids

Many businesses have a service that includes drain cleaning. Unfortunately, the service often overlooks the condition of the grout, tile, and floor around the drain. The smallest cracks and chips, missing grout, and even the area around drain grates or lids can trap moisture and organic debris.

Cleaning the drain grate or lid regularly is as important as cleaning the drain itself.

It’s important to include these areas in your routine drain maintenance so that they don’t attract pests.

drain cleaning

Fountain drink lines create added small fly concerns

In restaurants or bars where fountain drink lines flow to floor drains, there’s an added need for routine maintenance. The sugars present in soda syrups are highly attractive to small flies and can quickly build up in drains.

To avoid problems, flush fountain drink lines regularly.


Proper drain cleaning is essential for safety

Drains can harbor bacteria and other pathogens that are serious food safety risks and can be harmful to humans, such as Listeria monocytogenes. It’s important that proper safety precautions be followed for cleaning.

Always wear personal protective equipment when cleaning drains – gloves and eye protection. Also, be sure to use a drain cover to prevent splattering of organic material and pathogens outside of the drain.

Finally, be sure to use cleaning products that are labeled for drain cleaning purposes.


Get 10 best practices for drain cleaning and maintenance

Rentokil Steritech’s Best Practices for Floor Drain Cleaning and Maintenance card offers 10 valuable tips for drain cleaning. It’s a great checklist to provide your cleaning, maintenance, and housekeeping staffs to ensure that drains don’t become a source of pest issues.

Want more Best Practices cards like this one? Sign up for our monthly series and get a new card delivered to your inbox each month.

For more information on drains and small fly issues, as well as available solutions from Rentokil Steritech, check out our blog post from Jed Hammel, our Bioremediation Line of Business Manager.

Krissie Callahan
Krissie Callahan

As the Communications Manager for Rentokil North America, Krissie specializes in writing, editing, and shaping both internal and marketing messages for the company. When she's not at work, you can usually find her taking in a live music performance in her hometown of Charlotte, NC.

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