Prevent Sewer Backup
When it comes to home ownership and dealing with disasters, there are few things more discouraging and frustrating than to discover that there is a problem with the septic system. Yet, this is a problem the average homeowner will have to deal with at least once, if they own a home for any extended length of time. That said, it doesn’t have guarantee that sewer backup is inevitable. In fact, by taking steps to minimize the risks, one could potentially lower the odds of needing to call the plumber because of a sewer problem.
While there are many preventative steps that can be taken, perhaps the most important is to know what type of sewer lines your home has, as this will help you gauge the risk more effectively. The main types of sewer lines are:
· Clay sewer lines – If your home was built before the 1950s, then it is a good chance this is the type of system your home has. These pipes can be easily breeched by large root systems due to trees being planted too close. Other issues with clay sewer line systems is that it can be easier for tissue paper to build up and cause a blockage. Most professionals recommend that homes with clay sewer systems be professionally snaked using an environmentally safe chemical treatment at least once every couple of years.
· Fiber Conduit – During the late 50s and throughout the 60s, these began replacing the clay pipes. This product is not susceptible to damage by tree roots, but due to their material makeup, they have been found to become deformed in shape over time and to result in a sewer backup. This type of system should be cleaned annually.
· Cast iron sewer lines – Introduced in the late 1970s, this style is still in use today. It is an incredibly strong system, but it is still at risk of blockages due to the wrong things (sanitary products, grease, etc.) being put into the system, as well as being at risk of tree roots becoming wrapped around the pipes. Ideally, sewer backup concerns can be minimized by being cognizant of what is put into the system and by scheduling a yearly cleaning by a professional.
As with any household system, the best form of prevention is through awareness and scheduled maintenance. Yes, the maintenance may be somewhat time consuming – but think of the alternative – no home plumbing for anywhere from a few hours to potentially a few days and a large plumbing bill to be paid. So, minimize problems like sewer backup with preventative maintenance – it’s worth the investment!