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Preventing Root Damage to Your Sewer Line

One of the most common causes of sewer line damage is from tree root intrusion. It’s not difficult to understand why tree roots find sewer lines so attractive, as a leaking sewer line can provide a great source of water, nutrients and oxygen. Once a tree root finds its way into the pipe it’s only a matter of time before it grows inside and inhibits the flow of waste causing blockages, broken pipes and a major damage. You can avoid costly tree root damage by taking a few preventative measures.

Remember, before doing any digging in your yard always call your local public works department or the national 811 “Call Before You Dig” number to find the location of underground utilities.
Sewer Line Barriers

Barriers are available that can prevent root growth into sewer lines. Chemicals like copper sulfate and potassium hydroxide are commonly used for this purpose. Spread these chemicals near the sewer line to prevent root growth. Metal or thick wood barriers buried vertically and deeper than the sewer pipe can also prevent tree roots from reaching pipes.

Sewer Line Safe Landscaping

The best way to prevent problems down the road is to be smart about what you plant near sewer lines. If you are planting near sewer lines, select slow-growing trees with a small root area. Larger trees should be kept well away from the sewer line.
Warning Signs

Signs of root damage to sewer lines leads include frequent unexplained clogs, overflowing and slow drains, and gurgling sounds coming from toilets.

Sewer Line Video Camera Inspections

The best way to ensure that your sewer line is free of tree root intrusion and other obstructions is to have regular video camera inspections of your sewer line. A small camera is run through the lateral and helps your plumber find any potential problems. If tree roots or clogs are found, a cable can be run through the sewer pipe to clear clogs and cut through tree roots while cleaning the inner walls of the pipe.

Have questions about your home’s sewer line? Call ABC Southwest Plumbing & Air Conditioning, we can answer all your questions.

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