A slow drain is not something that anyone likes. It can be frustrating to wait for the drain to open or to feel the water buildup around your feet. A clogged pipe is not usually a major problem and can be repaired with a plumber’s snake or similar tool (rather that chemical drain cleaners which can cause damage), but what happens if the clog isn’t? Slow drains can sometimes be a sign that there is a bigger and more serious plumbing problem: a sewer line problem. These signs could indicate that you might need to have your sewer line replaced in the near future.
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Age and Persistence
As with all things, sewer pipes are more susceptible to failure as they age. Your sewer pipe will fail if it is older than 50 years. If the plumbing problems you are experiencing are persistent or recurring, it is possible that the problem is in your sewer line. A slow drain in a house with older pipes is more likely to be a pipe clog than a sewer blockage. If fixtures are backing up from water from other fixtures (e.g., the sink, toilet water backing up into your tub), it is likely that you have a main line obstruction.
Large trees can cause major problems for sewer lines if they are too close to your home. Although it is possible to not know exactly where your sewer line runs through your home, it’s possible the tree could be directly over or next to it. The root system of an established, healthy tree can extend much farther underground than you might think. It often extends further than the branches. Over time, those branches can reach for and cause damage to sewer pipes.
Although pipes can make all kinds of sounds, such as the clanging or water hammer sound, gurgles or bubbles should not be. A sewer line blockage is most likely if you hear a gurgling sound when you drain the sink or run your disposal.
Raw Sewage Backup Into Your Home
This is the most obvious sign you need main sewer line repair service. This is also the most obvious sign that your main sewer line is in trouble.
You can ignore the signs and keep trying to put things down the sewers. But eventually, your sewer line will stop being able to handle the extra sewage. This will cause a lot of sewage to back up in your home, causing a huge mess.
You will need to call a plumber to inspect your home and fix the problem. If your home has raw sewage leaking back through its pipes, you and your family may be at risk of serious health problems.