Signs, Causes Troubleshooting a Clogged Sewer Line

A clogged sewer line can cause serious problems. If left untreated, it can result in sewage backup into basements or crawl spaces, flooding, and even structural damage.

Sewer lines are buried underground pipes that carry wastewater from homes and businesses away from their source. They are usually constructed of concrete, clay, or plastic pipe. The pipes are designed to move waste through the ground without allowing water to enter them.

Clogged sewer lines can be caused by tree roots growing into the pipes, debris blocking the flow of wastewater, or other blockages. When these occur, they can prevent the flow of wastewater from entering the main drainpipe. This causes the wastewater to back up into the basement or crawl space.

What Causes a Clogged Sewer Line?

A clogged sewer line is typically caused by tree roots growing inside the pipe. Roots grow along the outside of the pipe until they find an opening. Once there, they begin to push against the walls of the pipe, causing cracks. Water then seeps into the cracks and grows into the root system. Eventually, this water fills the entire pipe, creating a blockage.

Top 5 Signs You Have a Collapsed Sewer Line Needing Repair

Tree roots also create blockages if they break off pieces of the old pipe and get stuck inside the new one. These pieces may not be visible, but they still cause blockages.

Another common cause of clogged sewers is debris such as leaves, grass clippings, sticks, and small rocks. Debris gets caught on the inner surface of the pipe, preventing wastewater from flowing freely.

How Do I Know if My Sewer Line Is Blocked?

If you suspect your sewer line is blocked, call us today for help. We will inspect your home or business’s drainage system and determine whether your sewer line needs repair. Our expert plumbers will use state-of-the-art equipment to locate any blockages and clear them out.

If we find a problem with your sewer line, we will fix it quickly and efficiently using our tried and true methods. We have been repairing sewer lines for over 30 years, so you know you are getting top quality service every time.

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How Do I Know if I Have a Main Sewer Line Clog?

One way to tell if you have a clogged main sewer line is to check the color of the water coming out of your faucet. If the water looks cloudy or murky, you probably have a clog somewhere in your plumbing system.

The next step is to look at your drains. Are they draining properly? If not, you may have a clog in your main sewer line.

You should also check your toilet bowl. If the water level is low, you may have a leak in your sewer line.

You can also try flushing your toilets. If the water does not come out completely, you may have a blockage in your sewer line. If the water comes out slowly or stops altogether, you may need to call us right away.

How Can I Prevent a Clogged Sewer Pipe?

To avoid having a clogged pipe, make sure all trees around your property are trimmed regularly. Trimming branches near your house helps keep roots from growing into your pipes.

It is important that you clean out your gutters each year. Leaves, twigs, and other debris often fall down your gutter during winter storms. They end up in your storm drain and eventually get flushed into your sewer line.

It is also important to keep your yard free of weeds. The roots of these plants can enter the pipe through cracks and holes.

Finally, don’t let pets run loose in your yard. Pets can dig up soil and leave behind their droppings. This waste ends up in your storm drain, where it mixes with rainwater and flows into your sewer line. It eventually makes its way into your home’s plumbing system.

How Do I Diagnose a Clogged Sewer Line?

When you suspect your sewer line might be clogged, the first thing you should do is turn off the power supply to your home or business. You want to prevent any electrical damage while you work on the problem.

Next, shut off the water supply to your home or office. You can do this by turning off the valve located outside your building.

Once the water has been turned off, you will need to remove any appliances connected to your sewage system. For example, you may need to disconnect your washing machine or dishwasher before working on the pipe.

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Once everything is disconnected, you will need to start looking for leaks in your plumbing system. A simple drip test will allow you to see if there is anything leaking inside your pipes.

If you find a leak, you can use a flashlight to shine light onto the area. If you see light shining back at you, then you know you have found a leak. If you cannot locate the source of the leak, you may need to hire an expert plumber.

How Do I Unclog a Sewer Line?

Unblocking a sewer line can be very dangerous. If you fail to unblock the line quickly enough, you could cause serious injury to yourself or others.

Before attempting to unclog your sewer line, you must shut off the power supply to the entire building. Once the power has been cut off, you will need a ladder to access the roof.

From here, you will need to open up the manhole cover. After doing so, you will need to pull the handle attached to the lid. When pulling the handle, you will need to hold the cover firmly closed.

You will next need to unscrew the cap from the top of the pipe. Pulling the cap off will expose the hole at the bottom of the pipe. You will now need to insert a long tool called a snake into the hole. The snake is designed to push material away from the pipe as it moves along.

How Much Should I Expect to Pay for a Sewer Line Cleanout?

Sewer line cleaning services typically cost between $200 and $400 per job. However, you may be able to save money by hiring a professional plumber instead of trying to fix the issue yourself.

A good plumber will be able to diagnose the problem more accurately than you ever could. They will also be able to provide you with a quote that includes all of the costs associated with the repair.

A good plumber will also be able to explain how much time each part of the process will take. He or she will also be able to give you an estimate of when the project will be completed.

What Usually Causes a Clogged Sewer Line?

There are many different reasons why a sewer line can become clogged. Some common causes include:

Tree roots – Tree roots growing near your sewer line can make it difficult for wastewater to flow through the pipe.

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Debris – Debris such as leaves, twigs, and other small objects can get stuck in the drainpipe. This debris can block the flow of waste.

Animals – Animals like raccoons, squirrels, and birds often dig around in sewers and leave their droppings behind. These droppings can also cause problems.

Frozen pipes – Frozen pipes can cause damage to your sewer lines. If this happens, you should contact a plumber immediately.

Clogs – Over time, solid matter can build up inside the pipes. This buildup can create large clogs that prevent water from flowing properly.

When does my sewer line need to be cleaned out?

Your sewer line needs to be cleaned out periodically. In most cases, this means once every three years. Although there are some exceptions, it is best to clean your sewer line after three years.

If you do not clean your sewer line on a regular basis, you risk having a major plumbing emergency occur. A clogged sewer line can lead to sewage backing up into your home. This can result in severe health issues if you are exposed to the contaminated water.

What Is Your Main Sewer Line and Where Is It Located?

The main sewer line is located under your home’s foundation. It connects to the rest of your home’s drainage system.

Most homes have two main drains. One of these drains leads directly to the city sewer line. The second drain usually goes to a septic tank.

Symptoms of a Sewer Drain Clog

You may notice several symptoms if your sewer line has been blocked. Here are some of the most common signs that you need to call a plumber:

3 Signs Your Sewer Line Is clogged - Service Pros Plumbing
  • Water leaking from the basement floor
  • Leaking toilets
  • Slow draining sinks
  • Unflushable toilet paper
  • Warm running faucets
  • Flooded basements
  • Heavy odors coming from the bathroom
  • Rotten food smells
  • Strange noises coming


We hope that we were able to answer any questions you might have about sewer line cleaning. We know that this topic can be confusing. That is why we want to help you understand what is happening so that you can avoid potential problems down the road.

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