Reliant Plumbing Blog

Sewer maintenance and repair tips

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Sewer Problem Fixes

The best defense against sewer system problems is a good offense. Sewer systems – drains from inside the house, the drainage piping inside the house and the outdoor sewer lines – perform a daily function forgotten by many home owners. This important household system requires maintenance and check-ups, so it doesn’t fail and become one of the most expensive home repair projects you’ll ever face. You can help your sewer system by watching for warning signs, keeping the system clear and minimizing repairs if needed.

Sewer System Warning Signs

Sewer system repair costs can get expensive quickly. Be wary of any of these warning signs which indicate a problem, and start prevention efforts or repairs quickly:

Water seeping out of the ground along the outdoor sewer line path from the house to the main line under the street;
Odd noises from inside plumbing fixtures or within walls as water flows through them;
Odors coming from drains that smell rotten or putrid;
Faucets, shower heads or other outlets suddenly don’t have the same water pressure or flow;
Sinks or drains are clogging often, or water simply backs up into the sink or bathtub instead of draining; and
Any indication of larger debris or gunky muck backing up into toilets, bathtubs or sinks.
These warning signs should not be ignored. Try to find a simple fix to these problems, but don’t delay calling for professional sewer system help if the warning signs persist or worsen.

Maintain A Clear Sewer System

At the first or middle of each month, give your sewer system a once-a-month boost with an enzyme-based drain cleaner. It’s simple and available at hardware stores. Don’t use chemical-based cleaners because they can damage your sewer system more than they help. Enzyme cleaners can help without corroding pipes and aren’t harmful to the environment. We all know to teach children not to flush toys down the toilet or push things down the drain. We adults need to understand that we shouldn’t flush anything thicker than toilet paper, such as clean wipes or hygiene products. These items can cause serious sewer clogs only a professional can remove. Be wary of any trees, bushes or plants growing near the outside sewer line. Plant roots are notorious for breaking through sewer pipes causing clogs and possibly even destroying the sewer line. You should include in any landscaping plans the location of the sewer drainage pipe to avoid planting any new trees or plants nearby. It’s best to change your landscaping plans and not create an expensive sewer repair cost in the future.

Cut Sewer Repair Costs

Even with the best prevention efforts in place, we recommend once a year “rooting out” of sewer line issues before they become an expensive project. Having a professional “run a rooter” through the sewer line to clear any clogs, debris or plant roots is a wise investment. This is especially true with older homes that have mature trees or bushes near the house sewer line. A professional plumber can also use a camera to follow the pipe and check for any problems. If there are trees that are old or dying, consider replacing them. Consult a professional on the health of trees. Another option to curb future sewer repair costs is to invest in replacing old sewer pipes with new lines that resist root damage. While this is a planned expense, modern lines can offer smoother drainage and less worry, so you can enjoy your home more. While we support homeowners wanting to “do it yourself” with smaller plumbing problems, we don’t recommend attempting to tackle serious sewer repairs without professional help. A missed sewer problem or a misstep in the sewer repair, and costs can escalate quickly. Whether you need regular maintenance, emergency repairs, or any related sewer plumbing service, you’ll need a professional plumbing company ready to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You deserve the best sewer system possible, provided by professional plumbers with the skills and knowledge to make it happen. Your residential plumbing or commercial plumbing needs deserve quality service from a local company. For all plumbing needs in Austin, call the professionals at Reliant Plumbing today at 512.222.6029.

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