One of the most common plumbing issues we see are pipe blockages caused by tree root intrusion. If pipes have any leaks, or even tiny cracks, that creates the perfect conditions as tree roots seek out moisture and fertile soil (sewer pipes!). Pipes with seams are also at risk for root invasion. Many older homes in our area have clay or cast iron drain pipes, with especially vulnerable mortar or lead-filled joints.
Once the roots intrude into the sewer line, they GROW inside the pipes. This causes slower liquid flow, pipe damage or collapse, and eventually messy sewage backups into the house. Lucky home owners hear a gurgle, unlucky home owners come home to a real mess! How lucky are you?
Some signs of root intrusion:
1. Slow or clogged drains
2. Gurgling sounds
3. Soft, spongy or unexpected green patches in your yard
4. Foul odors (rotten eggs or sulphur)
Many homeowners don’t realize that having your main drain line “rooted” every year or two isn’t normal. Even when roots are cut up and removed, they’ll be back – for sure! The integrity of the drain line is compromised. Liquids will leach into the ground causing additional soil settling, major slumping and eventually collapse of the drain line. Once it collapses, that often means expensive trenching of a new line and weeks for your lawn to recover. If you attend to the issue early, there are options such as pulling a new “one-piece” line right though the existing pipe without destroying your landscape!
If you suspect trees are invading your pipes, have a licensed plumber perform a video camera inspection of your sewer drain system. Pronto Plumbing & Drain offers this complimentary service as well as free second opinions on sewer repair and replacement.