Warning Signs of a Main Line Clog

Your home’s sewer line may be hidden, but that doesn’t mean it should be considered out of sight, out of mind. A damaged sewer line has the potential to cause massive damage inside a home if ignored. Unfortunately, the average homeowner doesn’t have much knowledge beyond the basics of how their sewer line functions. In fact, most people don’t even give the sewer line a second thought until a clog forms.

A main sewer line clog is not something to take lightly. This kind of obstruction can cause raw sewage to back up into the drains requiring extensive sewer line repair and replacement.

How can you prevent such a significant repair? Here are some things you should be observant about as you use the plumbing in your home.

Clogged Toilets

Sewage problems do not happen overnight. There are red flags that alert sharp-eyed homeowners to potential problems. If you listen to what your home is saying to you, it’s possible to thwart a major disaster.

Toilets that back up frequently or gurgle are trying to tell you something is wrong. Randall Smythe, a Rooter Hero Plumbing technician, says, “If you notice that when you drain the bathtub your toilets backup, this is a very big sign that something isn’t working the way it is supposed to.”

Blockages can occur in the secondary lines too, not just the main sewer line, Smythe reminds us. Ideally, secondary line blockages are easier to resolve and cost less to fix because the problem is isolated to one area of the home. You can tell if you have a secondary blockage if only one plumbing fixture is experiencing problems. For example, if you flush your toilet and it won’t drain.

Symptoms of a main line clog are flushing that same toilet and the water backing up into your bathroom sink or water pooling around a floor drain in your basement. In cases like these, you’re most likely dealing with a main line obstruction.

What Causes a Main Line Clog?

If you own a new home, main line clogs often occur because of poor flushing habits. Feminine hygiene products and too much toilet paper are the two main causes of clogs in newer homes.

Homeowners with older properties often have to contend with tree roots that have grown into the sewer line. Usually by the time this problem is detected the majority of the damage has already been done.  Tree roots can cause large amounts of the main line to be crushed and operation is affected.

Relieving the Pressure

Gaining access to the sewer clean out is a good way to alleviate the pressure and get waste water flowing out of the home and into the yard. Remove the cap that is over the clean out pipe. This will release the pressure. However, waste water in the yard is not a permanent solution.  You’ll need to call a plumber to help you repair the problem.

Calling a Plumber

When you call a plumber, ask for a clean out and also a video camera inspection. The average price for a clean out using a drain snake or hydro-jetting service is around $150 depending on the geographical area and the service you use.

If the pipe is damaged, you’ll need to have the line relined or replaced. This is a repair that is more extensive than the average clean out, but thanks to new technology like trenchless sewer line repair there are cost-effective repair options.

For more information about main line clogs, contact your friendly Rooter Hero Plumbing pro today!