The foreboding signs of a toilet that won’t flush, foul-smelling drains, or sewage coming through your shower often point to a homeowner’s worst nightmare: sewer stoppage. If you notice any of these telltale indications, it may be time to reach out for professional plumbing services.
Sewage stoppage is an emergency issue. So, as you wait for help, it can be useful to unscrew the cap of your home’s cleanout. This is located outside, usually within a few feet of your home. Look for the end of a plastic pipe, just above the ground, with a cap or plug. You can unscrew this cap to allow it to spill over outside of your house rather than inside. This will alleviate the issue as it takes place inside your home as you wait for help. However, be sure that as soon as you are aware of the problem to call on professional help immediately.
Whether you’re on the city or county sewer, or your own septic system, a sewer stoppage can occur for various reasons. Causes range from improper installation of the underground system to even tree roots underground. In this article, we’ll discuss a few of the major causes of a sewer stoppage in your home.
The five common causes of sewer stoppage:
- Flushing the wrong items. Refrain from flushing anything but toilet paper. Items to be avoided should include wipes, feminine products, fats, oils, grease, and paper towels. Your sewer system is unable to disintegrate these items in water as it can with toilet paper. And though they may not cause an issue at first, they will likely damage your piping system with time. Remind everyone who uses your facilities to keep these things from being flushed or going down the drain.
- Root infiltration. Sometimes, the roots of the trees in your yard can present issues for your piping system. Roots can infiltrate a sewer line in the case that there is even a slight opening, most commonly taking place at the junction of your home’s drainage line and municipal tap. If these roots get inside your piping, they can quickly grow and cause significant issues.
- Insufficient drainage. Most modern piping systems are now made of plastic. However, if you live in an older home, there is a chance that your pipes are made of cast iron or another material that is less conducive to proper drainage. That’s because materials like cast iron tend to become corroded, which causes material to get lodged.
- Damage to your pipes. If your pipes are broken or have burst for some reason, your entire system will not properly drain. A variety of reasons can cause this sort of damage, from increased pressure or significant shifts in the soil to influxes of heavy traffic on the surface above the pipes.
- Sagging sewer lines. Your home’s sewer lines can begin to sag over time due to sinking soil or other unusual ground conditions. If this sag starts to grow, things like toilet paper and sewage can collect in this area and cause a blockage. Signs of this occurrence include frequent clogs in your drains, multiple clogs at once, and in different areas of your home, strange incidents within your fixtures like a flooding shower, or flooding or indentation in your lawn.
If you notice these causes and signs of a sewage stoppage in your home’s piping system, do not hesitate to reach out for professional plumbing assistance. This occurrence requires the urgent attention of a professional who can get your home back on track. We at NIR Plumbing are your local plumbing experts, serving the Corona, Moreno Valley, Riverside, and Redlands area. Reach out today for all plumbing problems, big and small!