How will I know if my main sewer line is beginning to clog? In most cases, your main sewer lines won’t get clogged overnight. What usually happens is all the drains in your house start to move slowly. One slow-moving drain means that the problem is isolated to that drain. Unlike a small drain that may need cleaning, your main sewer line can create serious problems. Some of the signs to be aware of are gurgling sounds, the smell of sewage, bubbles are coming from your toilet, or you might see water backing up from your tub or toilet. In the worst-case scenario, your toilets and drains can overflow, causing minor flooding on your bathroom floors.
Don’t Use Chemicals On A Clogged Sewer Line
Do not use chemical drain cleaners to clear these types of drains. Chemical drain cleaners are for minor drains at best, and you should never put drain cleaners down a toilet. Additionally, if you have used a chemical drain cleaner on your drains, let your plumber know so they can take extra precautions. Caution is also advised because some of the chemicals in drain cleaners can cause harm to your skin and eyes.
How Do Main Sewer Lines Get Clogged
Most of us don’t give a second thought about our sewer lines or what we put down our drains—for instance, pouring grease, or food scraps, down your kitchen sink, will create some real issues for your sewer line. In addition, other items such as feminine hygiene products, diapers, baby wipes, and paper towels can all get caught in ridges of our pipes. Over time, they can cause a backed-up sewer line, especially in the case of an older line.
You Kids Love To Flush Toys
In some instances, a stuffed animal or small toy may have found its way down many sewer line causing it to back up. Most young kids are mesmerized by flushing toilets and watching the water flow down the drain. However, the only thing better for a child is watching a toy get swallowed up. A homeowner can prevent a lodged toy by babyproofing your toilet. You can purchase a toilet seat lock online or at your local home center for 8-15 dollars.
Tree Roots Can Get Into Your Sewer Line And Live Off The Live Sewage
The worst type of clogged drain is tree roots. Tree roots are common in homes 20 years and older. The smallest crack in a sewer pipe can attract tree roots. Once in your pipes, they live off the nutrients in the raw sewage and multiply. While in some cases, a plumber’s snake can remove some tree roots, allowing your drain to move. However, if you want to clear your tree roots completely, leaving your drain clean, hydro jetting is your best and only option. This powerful machine can dissolve everything in its path. The hose is inserted into the pipe with a nozzle head at the end of the hose then it releases up to 4000 pounds per inch (psi) of water into the compromised area. The hydro jetting machine can even dissolve tree roots.
Old Sewer Lines Are More Susceptible To Clogging
Depending on the age of your home, you may have a sewer line made of clay, Orangeburg, cast iron, or a durable pipe like PVC / ABS. Orangeburg was a pipe made of wood fibers. It was never considered a reliable sewer line with a life span of 40-50 years. Clay sewer lines have a life expectancy of 50-60 years before breaking down and are known to experience root intrusions. Cast iron pipes are known to last 80-100 years, but cast iron pipes’ drawback is corrosion. While they are all durable, they do not last forever. PVC is the most reliable sewer line and will last as long as 100 years or more.
The Solution To Fixing The Main Sewer Line
If you’re the average do-it-yourselfer, clearing your main sewer line isn’t advised. Instead, a professional plumbing expert is the best recommendation for a clogged sewer line. There are two methods for removing clogged sewer lines. The first method is for your plumber to use a high-powered auger, also known as a plumber’s snake. Your plumber will insert the snake down the cleanout, located close to the house. However, for those drains that seem almost impossible to clear, the hydro jetter is brought in.
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1 thought on “How does your main sewer line become a serious problem?”
Thank you for explaining how older lines are more susceptible to clogging than newer ones. My sister thinks that her sewer line may be clogged. She does live in an older home, so I’ll be sure to share this with her.