The largest drain in your home is also the one that is the most vulnerable to major problems. Your sewer line is built to carry waste water and solids away from your home and to either your septic system or, the city sewer line.
While there are many problems that can come up with your sewer line, these are some of the more common:
Trees. Having trees planted near your sewer line makes it susceptible to tree roots. The roots of trees are built to sustain the life and growth of the tree. To do this they must seek out water and nutrients. While the contents of your sewer line is not something you even want to think about, to a tree those contents are key nutrients that will help the tree thrive. Tree roots will grow towards your sewer lines disrupting the soil around them until finally they begin to grow into your sewer lines. This causes significant damage and blockages that will cost hundreds of dollars to fix.
Damage. When the soil around your sewer lines is disrupted or it freezes, your sewer lines can shift. The sewer system is carefully designed so that the pipes are laying on the soil at a specific angle allowing maximum flow. When the soil shifts and one section of pipe is disrupted, the entire system pays the price – and so do you.
Clogs. There are many ways that a sewer line can become clogged. In the home if items are being flushed down the toilet that should not be – for instance, cat litter, feminine products, and diapers – these items can block the entire sewer line system. Tree roots are a major problem and will cause clogs that can only be cleared using major pieces of equipment and a professional plumber.
Leaks. When the soil around your sewer lines shifts or freezes various sections of pipe will shift from their intended position. These sections of pipe are held together using plumbing components that form joints. If the joints are disrupted they will begin to leak sewage into the Earth and on your property.
Having annual maintenance inspections of your sewer system is a great way to prevent all of these issues. A waterproof camera can be fed into the lines to get a clear picture of the condition of your lines and if there is anything to be concerned about.