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Here is What You Need to Do about Tree Roots In Your Sewer Line

March 20, 2021

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It's not uncommon for homeowners to find they have tree roots invading their home's sewer line. Many people don’t realize that your sewer line system is very vulnerable to tree root invasion, especially in older homes. Trees growing near sewer lines can eventually infiltrate them with their roots, causing many problems. Sewer pipes are prime targets for such infiltration types because they contain water and organic matter, which roots like. Some older homes that have old piping systems can be more vulnerable to tree root invasion. Once tree roots invade your sewer lines, they grow and eventually clog the system, which could result in messy, dangerous, and expensive sewage backups. It is essential to be on the lookout for signs of sewer line tree root invasion and solve the problem before it can cause irreparable damage. 

Signs of Tree Roots in Your Sewer Lines

Slow or clogged drains are promising signs of tree root invasion. It is common to hear strange gurgle sounds coming out of your sewer lines if tree roots have invaded them. The sounds can often be heard after flushing the toilet. 

Another sign of tree roots in your sewer line is blocked or collapsed pipes leading to backed-up toilets or drains. The backup could be caused by flushing something that clogged the drainage or tree roots in the sewer line. 

Sinkholes in your yard could also be a sign of tree roots in your sewer line. In such cases, call a plumbing technician immediately to identify the problem is crucial. This is something that should not wait. Also, stay as far away from the sinkhole as possible. A sinkhole in your yard or lawn could be an indicator of a severe sewer line problem that could even affect the integrity of your house's foundation. Damaged sewer lines could also send up the smell of rotten eggs or sulfur. 

The Risks

Tree roots stretch long distances underground; they are constantly searching for moisture and nutrients. Damaged or inadequately sealed sewer lines are more susceptible to tree root invasion. Roots can even cause sewer pipes to become blocked with thin hair strands. Also, grime and grease flowing through the sewer system could cause it to backup. Over time grime and grease stick to the pipes lining, eventually causing it to grab other trash items and eventually blocking the whole path. 

Roots in your sewer system could also cause pipes to crack. You don't want that. Homes with clay pipes and old plumbing systems are more vulnerable to root invasion. This problem could cause significant plumbing issues and headaches. 

How to Prevent Root Invasion of Your Sewer Lines

First, be aware of the path of your underground sewer lines. This is something your local plumbing contractor can help you with. Avoid planting trees on or near the path of the sewer lines. Secondly, plant trees with less aggressive root systems. Ask your landscaping specialist for recommendations for non-aggressive tree species for your climate. 

Consider removing fast-growing tree species in your yard. It is essential to know that older and larger trees have complex root systems that could be multiple times longer than their heights. If removing landscaping is not an option, try to create a barrier between the trees on your yard and sewer lines. Finally, replace old sewer lines with newer, modern, and less vulnerable pipes. This will save you some headaches in the future.

Contact your plumbing contractor for regular inspections of your plumbing system. These inspections can help you identify and remove tree roots in your sewer lines before they cause substantial damage. 

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