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Tree Roots in Sewer Lines: A Common Source of Drain Clogs

tree-roots-drain-pipeWhen drains are constantly slow and backing up, the root of the problem might be tougher than you think. That’s right; tree roots are often responsible for backed up sewer lines, especially if you’re noticing problems with the drains in sinks and tubs throughout your home. Unfortunately, there’s no easy way to resolve the problem.

If you suspect tree roots are affecting your home drainage, it’s time to take action. Call a plumber, and get more information from today’s guide.

How Tree Roots Clog Sewers

The reasoning is simple, although it’s not something you’d likely want to spend time thinking about. Tree roots need water, of course, but they also need fertilization, and your sewer lines are an excellent source for this. Tree roots can naturally grow towards sewer lines, and a problem occurs once they make contact.

Typically, tree roots wrap around sewer lines or begin to pierce them. By the time a homeowner calls us for repairs, the pipe may be completely stuffed with tree roots, blocking waste from moving through to the sewer system.

Signs of This Problem

Not sure whether your sewer line is affected by tree roots? It’s an easy problem to miss, but you want to detect it as early as possible. Look for these signs.

  • Multiple drains in the house tend to clog up or drain slowly.
  • A plunger does not really resolve your drainage issues.
  • You have an older tree in the yard.

Hydro Jetting and Drain Augers

One possible solution to tree roots in your sewer line is a drain auger. You might picture a drain auger, or drain snake, as typically being used to latch onto clogs in a pipe so they can be pulled right back out.

Professional drain augers, however, may be motorized and have additional attachments. One attachment might be better for catching onto clogs, while another is pointed to help break up a clog. In cases that are not too severe, a plumbing service may be able to successfully break up a clog of tree roots to move it down into the sewer.

In other cases, a hydro jetting tool might be a better fit. Hydro jetting involves using a long, thin hose that can blast water out of it at an extremely high pressure. This could potentially blast the tree roots through the other end of the drain pipe, as well as cleaning out the pipes of residue and debris. A technician should inspect the pipes thoroughly before finding the best solution or recommending any drastic measures.

Potential Long-Term Solutions

All in all, simply cleaning out the sewer lines may not solve the problem. For some pipes, annual cleanings might keep them in good condition for many years, but eventually, you have to deal with the problem head on.

Some people recommend root killers. You might be able to solve the problem, or part of the problem, by replacing, rerouting, or relining the pipes. But in some cases, removal of the tree is the only viable long-term option.

For more information or to schedule service for your sewer lines in Jerome, ID, contact Evans Plumbing Inc today.

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