Can I Put a Floor Drain in My Garage? What You Should Know

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It’s annoying to see water pooling on the garage floor. Whether it’s from the spilling of a bucket of water or cleaning the floor after a painful vehicle repair task, this is no pleasant sight.

More on that, if your floor plan didn’t take into account dispersing excess water, it might as well find a way to your house. Trust me! You don’t want the burden. So what can you do to prevent such hassle? How can you discard water from your garage?

Well, the first question that came to my mind was, can I put a floor drain in my garage? After some research, it turns out the best possible way to channel water outside.

As long as you have permission from the proper authority and resources to do such construction work, you are good to go. Even if there is no existing drain channel you can connect to. You still have the option to lead the water outside which will avert damages to your property.

Can I Put a Floor Drain in My Garage

Ok, this is an oversimplification of the entire process. Getting permission is alone can take a few days. You have to talk to the house owner if you don’t own that house.

Then comes the municipality of that particular area that will give you the permit for digging. And finally, check with the utility company to avoid damaging the underground water line that already exists.

After that, you need to rent digging equipment, make plans, and execute them. Seem a lot of work, right? Don’t lose hope just yet! These are absolute necessities for the job so it won’t raise complications later down the road.

Step by step guide to putting a floor drain in the garage

Let’s get to work! These are the steps you can follow if you ever need to put a floor drain in your garage. I will explain each step including what you should expect and the best possible way to do it. Here it goes.

1.    Get permits from authority

2.    Check with the utility company

3.    Make plans for floor drain

4.    Rent required tools

5.    Start digging

6.    Place the drain pipe

7.    Finishing up the work

1. Get permits from authority

Before making any modification to the house such as breaking walls, drilling holes, and other similar tasks, you need permits. If the house you are living in isn’t yours, talk to the house owners.

Digging a hole on the other hand is different. You will need to contact the local municipality office if they allow digging in your location. Don’t forget to collect any permit or certification that states you have permission to dig.

2. Check with the utility company

Next, check with the Utility company. Why is that you may ask? Well if you damage any utility line during your little digging, who do you think has to pay for the damage. It’s you of course. Additionally, you could have water coming from underground flooding your place.

So, try to have access to the plan utility line in your area. Make sure no water or gas line is going under your garage floor. Another easy way to do that is to call your nearest utility office and have them inspect your garage. They will mark the safe place to dig.

3. Make plans for floor drain

Once you have the green light from all the regulatory bodies, it’s time to make plans. Start this by closely observing the current situation. In which place water starts to accumulate when there is excess water. Is it in the middle, or other places?

If you have multiple places that pool water then you might have to dig two trenches and unite them along the way. Also, find out if there is an existing drain system that you can connect. Remember some state doesn’t allow that so be careful.

Also, make sure if you have to install any chemical rising unit in your drain so it won’t contaminate the sewerage system. Afterward, measure how much digging you need to do on concrete and the soil. It’s usually easy to work with soil than concrete so keep in mind.

4. Rent required tools

Now in this part, you will be looking at renting the best possible tools for your job. Generally, people use a jackhammer along with a concrete saw to cut solid concrete floors. Remember best tools yield the best result and cheap tools leave you with more mess.

5. Start digging

You have your plan, let’s start digging. According to your plan begin cutting your floor with the concrete saw carefully. Make the cut as deep as you and leave enough space to house your drain pipe. Try to hit double the Width of your pipe, it’s much safer.

After outlining, use a jackhammer to break up the upper parts. Once you hit the soil, use a shovel to scoop soil and make enough headroom for your pipe. Do the same outside from the point the water would disperse to sewerage.

6. Place the drain pipe

Place the pipe in a way it slopes towards the outside. That way once water gets into your pipe, water will go down naturally with the help of gravity. At the starting point of your drainpipe, place a P-trap/U-trap which will prevent any sewerage gas from leaking into your garage.

7. Finishing up the work

Now that you have laid the pipe, it’s time for covering the trench. Before you do that make sure your slope is at the right angle. If needed, pour some water into the pipe and observe the water flow. If it’s dispersing on its own you have done a good job.

Prepare your best concrete mix and pour a little by little into the trench. Make sure you have covered up any pipe openings so the mix can’t get in. Do your best to make it as level as possible so it won’t protrude too much.

On the soil, use a shovel to put back the soil. This is much easier compared to concrete slab refinishing. Just give some pat on the soil and it will get back to level in a few days.


What equipment do you need to cut the concrete slab?

For this task, you will need a concrete saw and a few prying with a crowbar to pull the upper part. Some professionals can do this only with a jackhammer.

I don’t have the tools to cut concrete slab, what should I do?

Even though you don’t have the right tools, you can easily rent your desired tools. Once you have finished the task, return them on time.

I don’t own the house but can I dig holes into my garage?

No! you cant. Even if you are the owner of the house, you can’t just start digging in your garage. There could be utility lines that you will damage unintentionally. So, get proper permits from the city council and utility company.

How should I design my Garage floor to disperse water?

If it’s possible, add a slope to the entire garage floor. If it’s past that, then install a drain pipe with P-trap/U-trap and chemical rinser.

Wrap Up

Your garage floor should not hold water in any circumstances. Firstly, it creates complications and damages your house. But if you just have found that your garage has a crooked floor, now you know the proper way to fix it. Hope this information serves you well.

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Hi, I am Brent Hartman. I am a DIY enthusiast and love to improve and organize the garage in the most innovative way. I created this website out of my passion for helping people organize their garages.

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