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Main Issues Causing Sewer Problems

  • February 21, 2023
  • Property Manager
  • Category: Property Management

Welcome to the world of sewer problems!

We may not be talking about the most glamorous topic today, but understanding the main issues causing sewer problems is essential for every homeowner, property manager, or just about anyone who has experienced the unpleasantness of sewage backups.

Sewer problems can be a real pain in the, well, let’s say, they’re not fun. That’s why in this blog post, we’ll look at the main issues that cause sewer problems and offer tips on how to prevent them.

So, strap on your attitude, and let’s dive into the world of sewer problems!

Common Causes of Sewer Problems

Sewer problems can arise from several issues, including tree roots, clogs, and pipe damage. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at these issues and discuss how they impact the sewer system.

  • Tree Root Intrusion

Believe it or not, trees can be a major cause of sewer problems. Tree roots can grow into the sewer line and cause blockages or even damage the pipe. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, tree roots are responsible for up to 50% of sewer blockages.

To prevent tree root intrusion, avoid planting trees or large shrubs near the sewer line, and regularly inspect your sewer line to catch any problems early. If you have a tree root intrusion, a plumber can use specialized equipment to cut through the roots and clear the blockage.

  • Clogs

Clogs are another common cause of sewer problems. Clogs can occur when items not meant to be flushed down the toilet or poured down the sink are sent down the drain. Over time, this can cause a buildup of material that can block the sewer line.

Be careful about what you flush or pour down the drain to prevent clogs. Everyday items that should not be washed include wet wipes, feminine hygiene products, and cooking grease. If you experience a clog, a plumber can clear the blockage using a drain snake or other specialized equipment.

  • Pipe Damage/Corrosion

Finally, sewer problems can occur due to pipe damage or corrosion. Over time, sewer pipes can degrade, leading to leaks or other damage. Several factors, including age, material quality, and soil conditions, can cause it.

To prevent pipe damage, it is essential to regularly inspect your sewer line and address any problems as soon as they are identified. A plumber can repair or replace damaged pipes using various techniques, including pipe relining and bursting.

Understanding the common causes of sewer problems can help you take preventative measures to protect your sewer system. Remember, tree roots, clogs, and pipe damage are all issues that can be addressed with proper maintenance and care. So, let’s not give these problems a chance to damage our sewer systems.

Signs of Sewer Problems

Even with proper maintenance, sewer problems can still occur. It’s essential to recognize the signs of sewer problems so you can address them before they become worse. This section will look closely at some of the most common symptoms of sewer problems.

  • Gurgling or Slow Drains

If you hear gurgling sounds from your toilet or sink or your drains are slow to empty, this may be a sign of a sewer problem. Gurgling sounds indicate that air is trapped in the sewer line, which a blockage or other issues can cause. Slow drains can also be caused by blockages or pipe damage.

  • Sewage Backups

If sewage backs up into your home, this is a clear sign of a sewer problem. It can be caused by a clog or other issue that prevents sewage from flowing out of your home. If you experience a sewage backup, you must call a plumber immediately to address the problem.

  • Foul Smells

If you notice foul smells coming from your drains or yard, this may signify a sewer problem. The odor may be caused by sewage not correctly flowing out of your home or by gases escaping from your sewer line.

Recognizing these signs of sewer problems is crucial because it can help you address issues before they worsen. For example, if you notice gurgling sounds or slow drains, you can clear a blockage before it causes a sewage backup. And if you notice foul smells, you can identify and fix a problem before it becomes a significant issue.

Understanding the signs of sewer problems is essential to maintaining your sewer system. If you notice these signs, don’t hesitate to call a plumber to address the issue. Remember, recognizing and addressing sewer problems early can help you avoid more severe and costly issues.

Prevention Tips

Preventing sewer problems is always better than dealing with them after they occur. This section will take a closer look at ways to avoid sewer issues.

  • Be Careful About What You Flush

One of the most common causes of sewer problems is flushing inappropriate items down the toilet or sink. It can include paper towels, feminine hygiene products, and cooking grease. Encourage your readers to be mindful of what they are flushing and to dispose of these items properly.

  • Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance of your sewer system can help prevent problems before they occur. It includes cleaning your drains and pipes regularly, having your system inspected periodically, and being aware of any changes in your water bill that may indicate a problem.

  • Plant Trees Carefully

Planting trees too close to your sewer line can cause damage to the pipes over time. Encourage your readers to be careful where they plant trees and avoid planting them near sewer lines.

  • Use a Sewer Backflow Prevention Valve

A sewer backflow prevention valve can help prevent sewage from backing up into your home. It can be essential if you live in an area prone to flooding or heavy rainfall.

Including these prevention tips in your sewer problems, blog posts can help your readers avoid issues before they occur. Prevention is always better than dealing with a costly and inconvenient problem later.

Sewer Maintenance

When it comes to maintaining a healthy sewer system, prevention is critical. Regular maintenance can prevent sewer problems and keep the system functioning correctly. Here are some tips on how to maintain a healthy sewer system:

  1. Cleaning: Regularly cleaning your sewer system is essential to prevent clogs and blockages. One way to do this is using a sewer jetter to flush out any debris blocking the pipes. Another method is using a sewer camera to inspect the lines and identify potential issues.
  2. Repairs: Addressing sewer problems promptly is essential to prevent them from becoming more severe and costly. Suppose you notice any sewer problems, such as slow drains or foul smells. In that case, it’s essential to take action and call a professional plumber to assess the situation and make any necessary repairs.
  3. Routine inspections: Regular inspections can help identify potential issues before they become significant problems. A professional plumber can inspect the sewer system and identify any signs of damage or wear and tear that may lead to future issues. Having your sewer system reviewed at least once a year is recommended.
  4. Be mindful of what you flush: Be careful about what you flush down the toilet or sink. Avoid flushing non-degradable items like baby wipes, feminine hygiene products, and grease or oil. These items can clog the pipes and cause serious issues.

Cost of Repairs

Repairing sewer problems can be costly, and it’s essential to be aware of the potential expenses so that you can budget accordingly. The cost of repairs can vary depending on the severity and type of the problem, as well as the location of the issue. Here are some key factors that can impact the cost of sewer repairs:

  1. Type of repair: Different types of sewer problems require different kinds of repairs, which can vary in cost. For example, repairing a simple clog in the sewer line may cost less than repairing a damaged or collapsed pipe.
  2. Location of the problem: The location of the sewer problem can also impact the cost of repairs. Issues that are located closer to the surface, such as a clog in a toilet or sink, may be easier and cheaper to repair than issues that are located deeper underground, such as a collapsed sewer line.
  3. The severity of the problem: The severity of the problem can also impact the cost of repairs. A minor issue, such as a small crack in a pipe, may cost less to repair than a significant problem, such as a collapsed sewer line.
  4. Labor costs: Labor costs can also impact the overall cost of sewer repairs. If the repair requires extensive labor, such as digging up and replacing a section of the sewer line, the price may be higher than a repair that can be completed quickly and easily.

To budget for sewer repairs, getting an estimate from a reputable plumber or sewer repair company is essential.

They can provide you with a quote for the cost of repairs based on the specific problem and location.

Additionally, having an emergency fund set aside for unexpected repairs is a good idea. It can help you avoid financial stress in a sewer problem.

Regulations and Permits for Sewer System Maintenance

In addition to the various causes of sewer problems and the steps to prevent them, it’s also essential to understand the regulations and permits related to sewer system maintenance in your local area. These regulations and licenses are put in place to ensure that sewer systems are safe and effective and to prevent any negative impact on public health and the environment.

Different areas may have additional regulations and requirements, so it’s essential to understand what applies in your specific location. It can include obtaining the necessary permits for any installation or repair work, ensuring that all work meets local codes and regulations, and scheduling any required inspections to ensure that your sewer system is functioning correctly.


In this blog post, we’ve covered the main issues causing sewer problems, the common causes of sewer problems, the signs of sewer problems, and prevention tips. Let’s take a moment to summarize the main points of the post.

Understanding Sewer Problems

It’s essential to understand sewer problems and their causes to prevent them from occurring in the first place. It includes recognizing common causes like tree root intrusion, clogs, and pipe damage and recognizing signs like slow drains, sewage backups, and foul smells.

Prevention is Key

Prevention is always better than dealing with a costly and inconvenient problem later. By being careful about what you flush, performing regular maintenance, planting trees carefully, and using a sewer backflow prevention valve, you can prevent sewer problems before they occur.

Taking Action

If you’re experiencing signs of sewer problems, it’s essential to take action to address them before they become worse. It can include calling a professional plumber or sewer specialist to assess the situation and offer solutions.

Therefore, it is vital to maintain a healthy and functional sewer system. By following the tips and advice provided in this post, you can avoid costly and inconvenient problems in the future.