Are you planning to turn your basement into a living area and wanted to know how to hide the sewer cleanout? You’ve come to the right place, for we have researched this question, and we have the answer for you.
A cabinet can be built around a sewer cleanout so that it can be hidden but still accessible if it needs to be accessed for maintenance. The sewer cleanout can also be trimmed and resealed if it is too high above the basement floor level. A shorter cleanout would be easier to hide.
We cover some additional situations regarding the sewer cleanout in the succeeding sections and how to hide it. You can also read about other interesting information about drains that you might like to know. Read on!
What is a sewer cleanout?
Let’s talk briefly about what a sewer cleanout is before we proceed with the other scenarios where you need to hide a sewer cleanout.
A sewer cleanout is the part of your plumbing and waste disposal system that is used for accessing the sewage pipes. If the sewage pipes need to be unclogged, a plumbing expert will be able to insert a snake, a sewer auger, or an auger hook to get rid of the blockage through the sewer cleanout.
Without the sewer cleanout, any bad blockage will require excavation of your sewage pipes, and this means damage to your landscaping or maybe even floors and walls.
Thus, the best cover to hide the sewer cleanout in the basement would be one that doesn’t restrict access to it.
How to hide a sewer cleanout in the middle of the basement floor?
If the sewer cleanout is in the middle of the basement floor, installing a cabinet around it will not be a good idea. The cabinet will be in the way of accessing the rest of the floor area once you turn your basement into a living area.
Instead, trim or modify the cleanout to be shorter and then install flooring overtop to conceal it.
The first step is to trim the sewer cleanout. This will make your sewer cleanout closer to the basement floor level.
The exact steps to do this will depend on how the cleanout in your basement is installed. There are several different sewer cleanout installations and different ways of trimming them, especially for the angled version.
Install Floor Joists
Install floor joists: The height of the joists should be slightly higher than the new height of the sewer cleanout. The joists will allow you to install a floor over the sewer cleanout.
You don’t need to install a new floor over the whole basement—especially if you have a large floor area. You can just install a new floor from the nearest corner to the sewer cleanout. The rest of the basement floor can stay the same.
Create a small frame around the sewer cleanout so that you can install a small door above it later.
Install subfloor material on top of the joists to cover the sewer cleanout. Create a small door that can be opened and closed or even locked if you want over the sewer cleanout. The only time it will have to be accessed is when there is a blockage in your sewage pipes.
Complete the floor installation with your preferred flooring.
How to hide a vertical drainpipe in the basement?
One way to hide this type of sewer cleanout is to build a cabinet around it.
If the sewer cleanout is on a vertical drainpipe in the middle of the basement, you can create a partial wall with a cabinet that opens to give access to the sewer cleanout. You can even build a column around the sewer cleanout and vertical drainpipe that opens to give access to the sewer cleanout.
Another way to hide the sewer cleanout and the drainpipe is to place a large bookshelf in front of it to cover it.
How to hide a basement drain in the middle of the floor?
If your basement floor has a drain, building a floor to cover the sewer cleanout will not be possible because the joists and the new floor will be exposed to water.
For this situation, you will need to trim your sewer cleanout as close as possible to the basement floor—even when the cap is on.
Once you’ve completed trimming the sewer cleanout, replace the standard cover with a flat type. This type of cover has a large slot in the middle where a large flathead screwdriver can be inserted to twist and open the sewer cleanout.
See this 4" basement floor drain cover on Amazon.
Once you’ve replaced the cover, drill a hole in the middle of the new cover. Get a stainless cover and place it on top of the flat sewer cleanout cap. Use a long screw to attach the stainless cover on top of the sewer cleanout.
This method will not completely conceal your sewer cleanout. This method can change how it looks so that it can blend easier with the rest of the basement.
You can only use this method if the sewer cleanout cap or cover is parallel to the floor. An angled sewer cleanout or one on a vertical pipe will not be able to use this method.
How to hide utilities in the basement?
One way to hide the utilities in your basement is to build a cover or box around them. If there are pipes along the foundation wall, you can build an interior wall that will cover the pipes and utilities.
When you build the wall, create a window where you can install a door or panel so that your utilities can be accessed when needed.
How to unclog a drain?
Here are some DIY tips to unclog a drain before you call a plumber.
Unclog a sink with a wire hanger
- Take a regular coat hanger and straighten it.
- Make a small hook on one end.
- Push the hooked end into the sink slowly and gently. Do not push it into the drain too hard because it might push the blockage further into the drainpipes.
- Remove any blockage using a hooking motion that pulls the clog towards you so that you can take it out. This will help dislodge anything that is blocking your drain.
Unclog shower drains with dish detergent
Shower drains are easily clogged with hair. Dish detergent can break up the hair build-up and lubricate it so that it can easily pass through the drain.
- Pour a cup of dish detergent into the shower drain and wait for a few minutes.
- Pour boiling water into the drain.
- Use a plunger to help push the clog into the drain.
Unclog the bathroom sink
- Pour boiling water down the bathroom sink drain and wait until the water clears.
- Pour half a cup of baking soda down the drain.
- Follow the baking soda with a cup of boiling water.
- Then pour in a cup of white vinegar.
- Let the mixture sit for an hour or so.
Does washing soda unclog drains?
Washing soda is also known as sodium carbonate. It is more alkaline than regular baking soda, and this makes it a stronger drain cleaner.
- Pour boiling water down the sink.
- Follow the boiling water with a mug of washing soda.
- Pour in a mug of boiling water once more.
- Leave the mixture to sit for a few minutes.
- If the sink still drains slowly, repeat the process.
The Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda Detergent Booster & Household Cleaner is available on Amazon. Check it out through this link.
How to make your own washing soda?
Baking soda can be turned into washing soda in your home.
- Pour baking soda into a baking dish until it is about half an inch deep.
- Place it in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Wait for an hour.
Can caustic soda unclog a drain?
Caustic soda is sodium hydroxide. It is more commonly known as lye. Pure caustic soda is used in making candles or soap.
A 2-pound jar of Sodium Hydroxide (caustic soda, lye) from Belle Chemical is available on Amazon. Check it out through this link.
Important note: Safety first!
Wear eye goggles and rubber gloves before proceeding with the steps below. Make sure that the area where you will do the succeeding steps is well ventilated.
- Pour three-quarters of a gallon of cold water into a large bucket.
- Measure three cups of caustic soda and add them to the water.
- Use a wooden spoon to stir the solution thoroughly. You will notice that the mixture will start to fizz.
- Carefully pour the mixture into the clogged drain.
- Wait for half an hour.
- Pour boiling water to flush the mixture down the drain.
- Repeat this process if your drain is still clogged.
Hiding the sewer cleanout in the basement can be a simple task. With a little bit of imagination and creativity, any number of solutions can be done to hide or blend the sewer cleanout with the rest of the basement once you turn it into a living area.
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