A sewer line is a piping system used by a city or town to control waste disposal. There are two types of drains, namely sanitary and storm drains. The latter takes care of rain and groundwater, while the former comes from toilets and wash drains.
Every house or building is linked to this central system and whatever runs through it ends up at a processing plant or back into the rivers and streams. Your sewer main is the most crucial part of your home’s entire plumbing system.
Unfortunately, since it is hidden deep underground, the sewer main is also something most people don’t know much about. So in many cases, they are poorly maintained and exist in various states of disrepair. Many homeowners do not think about their home’s sewer pipes until a serious problem is usually a sewer line clog.
Sewer Line Problems
Overall it’s a very convenient way for people to get rid of very distasteful waste, which would otherwise be a very unpleasant experience.
In fact, it’s one of the services that will be noticed quite quickly if it’s not there anymore, though a homeowner doesn’t always think about it. When the system fails, and the process starts reversing, it becomes a very big problem.
For renters and owners alike, the first sign of a blocked sewer is the smell. Everything in the surrounding neighborhood is usually affected by the aroma of only one main sewer.
This means that it can be uncomfortable in concentrated spaces, such as the backyard of a home. Even worse, if the pipes are damaged and need to be repaired, the smell becomes the least problem.
Why Sewers Get Clogged
There are several reasons why sewers get blocked. For example, when obstructive materials such as diapers and towels are flushed down the toilet, it can cause a major block. These obstructions might move a little bit down the line, but they eventually stop and create problems.
Tree roots and old pipes are also great examples of causes of blockage because if the pipes are vulnerable, then the roots can create a solid obstruction.
In some cases, the pipes just weren’t properly installed.
- If everything goes smoothly, the drain snake is run through a clean-out. But in cases where there is no clean-out, the process of unclogging that main can become much, much trickier.
- If the stoppage remains resilient to the efforts of our sewer clearing team, your entire line may require replacement. In this case, nothing you can do besides choosing to live with the inconvenient, unsanitary clog – which is no choice at all.
How to Unclog Main Sewer Line
The correct approach to unclogging sewer pipes will depend on the problem. Everyday blockages can be fixed easily with some drain cleaner and a plunger.
The moment they stop being effective, more excessive tactics are necessary. Luckily some handy tools can be used when the problem runs deeper than expected, but they aren’t always easy to use.
The worst-case scenario is when a homeowner needs to start digging to find the problem, which usually leads to pipe replacement.
Ultimately it’s much better to prevent the problem, given the nature of the waste involved. However, if prevention doesn’t work, a professional plumber can always be called to handle it.
This is very important when pipes need to be replaced or repaired because if something goes wrong, it can become an even bigger and more expensive mess.