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Signs of a Main Sewer Line Backup

October 25, 2013 | Blog

Dallas Sewer Line Problem Plumbers

When do you know if you have a problem main_sewer_linewith your main sewer line? While each case is different, if you notice sewage backing up out of the sewer main it’s likely you have a problem. Alternatively, if when you flush the toilet and water comes up out of the shower or bathtub drain, there could be a problem with your sewer main. While a slow draining bathtub can also be a symptom of a clogged sewer line, by itself alone it’s unlikely that the problem rests in the sewer main. Given the potentially costly repairs that may be necessary as a result of a problem with your sewer main, it’s important to determine what is causing sewage backup if you’ve recently noticed problems in your home.

Your Sewer Main – Where the Problem Starts

In order to understand how problems typically begin with sewer mains, we need to begin with the materials out of which sewer mains are constructed. Depending on the age of your home or housing development where you live, your sewer main could be made out of cast iron (used in homes up to the 1940s); Orangeburg, asbestos cement, and clay (used during the 1950s through the 1970s); and plastic (used during the 1980s through today).

Each of these materials has certain advantages and disadvantages that can lead to problems with your sewer main. For example, cast iron pipes – while extremely sturdy – are susceptible to rust. As a result, weakening and hole can develop which eventually lead to clogs. Orangeburg can blister and peel. Asbestos has been banned for decades. Clay piping can leak when connections loosen. Plastic piping does not corrode and will not leak if piping connections are properly fitted and sealed.

Threats to Your Sewer Main

Threats to your sewer main begin with trees and shrubs. Roots are attracted to water. Consequently, if your sewer line has deteriorated or developed a leak – even if it’s a small amount at first, it’s highly likely that tree roots will spider out and eventually find water and its source. If your sewer line has been compromise in any way, tree and shrub roots could grow into and around the line, leading to a serious clog. Alternatively, sewer lines can become clogged with debris like tennis or baseballs that fall down sewers, as well as other kinds of detritus that can accumulate and block the flow of water.

Diagnosing the Problem with a Sewer Main

If you suspect a problem with your sewer main, you can begin with an inspection of the cast line and cast clean out cap inside your home. If you can’t see any evidence that it’s ever been opened – for instance, an absence of scrapes from a wrench – then it’s likely your line has never been cleaned. If the clean out cap is now plastic, there’s a good chance your line has been inspected or cleaned.
Regardless of what you can determine on your own, your best option is to call a certified, bonded, and insured plumber who can use a camera to inspect the sewer line itself.

Contact Dallas – Ft. Worth Sewer Main Plumbers at Public Service Plumbers

If you think you might have a problem with your sewer main, call Public Service Plumbers at (214) 753-4633 or email us. Our professional plumbers can conduct a thorough inspection to determine what the source of the problem is. If your sewer main is clogged, we can use a high-pressure water tool to dislodged clogs. We’ll discuss the best options available to you and do everything we can to avoid future problems that may require digging up the sewer line itself.

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