A sewer line clog might be unseen, but it can cause extensive damage inside a home.
The average homeowner probably knows that sewer lines help transport waste water from the home to underground sewer mains. Beyond that, most homeowners give little thought to their sewer lines until they have some type of clog.
A sewer line clog could lead to a raw sewage backup coming out of the drains, which could lead to significant damage to the home and an expensive sewer line repair or replacement.
Homeowners who understand and respond to their home’s early warning system can stave off severe sewer and plumbing issues. Here are some things you should pay attention to.
Clogged drain or toilet
The most common red flags, sewer main cleaners say, are water backing up out of a drain or the toilet plumbing, or a gurgling sound coming from the drains.
Tree roots are the primary cause of a clogged sewer line, especially in an older home. In newer homes, common sources of clogging include feminine hygiene products, paper towels and even certain types of thicker toilet paper.
Release the pressure
If you get a clog in your home and suspect that a blocked sewer drain is the cause, Sims says it’s important to shut off the water at the source or at the main if it’s a main line clog.
Homeowners who have access to their sewer cleanout line — typically a short, round, white pipe with a rubber cap located in the yard near the house — can remove the cleanout cap during a backup to release pressure build up; and send water outside instead of into the house.
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