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Dealing with Tree Roots in Sewers

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tree roots in sewers

If you’re constantly dealing with problems with your sewer line, there’s a good chance that tree roots could be to blame. While this is a frustrating problem, there are ways to help minimize the chances of tree roots affecting your sewer line and ways that you can address the problem with pipeline leak repair in Sacramento, CA, and other options. Here’s what you need to know about tree roots and your sewer line.

Tree Roots in Sewers: Everything You Need to Know

Why Roots Encroach

Many homeowners are surprised to learn that the problem with their sewer line is tree roots because they don’t have shrubs or trees planted near the area where the line is buried. However, the roots can travel very far distances in search of moisture and nutrient-rich areas, like those around the sewer pipe. Some types of trees and shrubs are more likely to get into sewer lines because of how the root systems grow. Additionally, you’re more likely to have root problems with an older pipe that has minor damage where the tiny hair-like fibers of roots can grow into the pipe and then grow larger. In most cases, the roots don’t cause the initial damage, but they definitely worsen it once they find a way into the pipes.

Signs of Root Damage

One of the most common indicators of roots in your sewer line is recurring drainage issues or a backed-up sewer. You may be able to snake the pipe yourself or have a plumber clean out the line with a snake, but the blockage always returns. The only way to truly know for certain if roots are the problem is to get a camera inspection of the line.

Repipe Plumbing in Sacramento, CA

Locating Roots

A camera inspection is a valuable tool not only in determining if roots are the problem but for locating the exact area of concern and how extensive the root penetration is. These inspections not only provide a clear picture, but they include locating technology that gives the technician exact location information for where the tree root blockage is located within the pipe.

Preventing Root Intrusion

There are some products that can help keep roots out of your sewer line, but these are typically maintenance products after you’ve already experienced root intrusion. The best way to keep roots out of your pipes is to periodically check the line and make sure there’s no damage that will allow the roots to penetrate your line. Planting trees and shrubs with shallow root systems can also help prevent roots in the sewer.

Removing Roots

There are a few different options for removing roots in the sewer line, depending on how extensive the intrusion is and how damaged the sewer pipe is. In some cases, hydrojetting can be effective at removing roots, especially when they’re still thin and easily cut. Hydrojetting uses water at 3,000 psi to break through roots and other debris in the pipe and flush it out. There are also sewer machines specifically designed to be fed through the line and cut the roots out, which often requires the remaining debris to be flushed out via hydrojetting. There are chemicals available that can help kill the roots, but it’s important to remember that some of these may cause weakened or corroded pipes, so a professional should always be consulted before using these products. Severely damaged pipes from tree roots may be a good candidate for repipe plumbing in Sacramento, CA. To learn how to address your problem, contact Bullseye Leak Detection, Inc. today.

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