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Sewer line damage signs and possible causes

broken pipe

Signs of damage to your home’s sewer line often start with experiencing unusual smells, backed-up drains, and pest infestations. There is other evidence that a sewer line is damaged, and most of them can be prevented. If you’re experiencing sewer pipe problems, be proactive and fix it now. You will find it’s more cost-effective to replace sewer lines at the first signs of trouble than in an emergency.

Indications That Sewer Lines Are Damaged

Internal Blockage

If anything is flushed down the drains that shouldn’t be, it can build up in the sewer lines and block anything else from going down. Blockages can also happen from grease buildup or other contaminants going down the drain. Try to avoid flushing anything except toilet paper. Also, avoid items like grease or paint from being poured down the sink.

Tree Root Damage

When there is a small leak in the sewer line, tree roots will start growing toward it. When they reach the sewer line, roots often enter through a small crack causing the pipe to become blocked. When this happens, tree roots will need to be removed and the sewer line repaired.

Heavy Equipment

Even though your sewer pipes are buried, when heavy equipment drives over them, it could crush or crack the sewer lines. So. avoid driving heavy items over your lawn where sewer lines are located. To be safe, have the sewer line locations marked when doing any construction or renovating on your home.

Yard Excavation

Excavating in your yard to remove plants or trees, or changing the hardscape, can damage a sewer line. Older pipes are even more susceptible to breakage. Before you start landscaping, have your sewer lines, electrical lines, and any gas lines in the yard marked by a professional.

Old Sewer Pipes

If your home is old, you are sure to have older sewer lines. Probably clay pipes were used as your sewer line, which tend to break down over time. If the pipes are clay pipes and show signs of wear, it’s probably a good time to have them replaced. Repairs can extend the pipe's life for a little while, but they will continue to break down over time.

Home Foundation Problems

If you have home foundation issues, it can lead to damaged sewer lines. Call on a professional to determine the extent of the damage and whether the foundation will continue shifting or cracking. You always want to make sure the foundation problems are repaired so there will not be further sewer line damage.

If you’ve experienced sewer line damage caused by any of the above, call for help now because the problem will only get worse with time. Contact Feehan Plumbing & Heating today to schedule a time to have your sewer line inspected and repaired.

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