How to Spot and Repair Tree Roots in Sewer Lines

Roots follow water. They do so with such purpose that they will make their way into your pipes if they can find a way. Root intrusion can cause serious destruction to sewer drainage systems. Once roots penetrate a pipe, they grow to extreme lengths – potentially reaching across the span of entire residential or commercial structures. While cracks and splits cause the sewer line problems, reaching those damaged areas becomes an issue all its own. Below, we review the steps to discover, assess, and repair tree roots in sewer lines.

Signs of Tree Roots in Sewer Lines

The signs of tree root damage to sewer lines are slow emptying drains, collapsed or blocked pipes, sinkholes, and bad odors. The existence of large trees on the property can also be an indicator if signs of a backup are present. Once it is determined that a tree root or other type of organic plant material is the cause of the clogged or stopped drainage pipe, assessing the total amount of damage comes into play. The existence of one breach can often mean others are either already in the system or reaching toward it. The moisture leak created by a tree’s roots in a sewer line will attract other roots as they grow toward water. And once the roots tap into the pipe, they can consume the entire pipe – filling (and eventually outgrowing) the diameter with plant matter.

How to Repair Tree Roots in Sewer Lines

When root invasions are severe, homeowners and commercial property owners will need to hire a pipe repair company to fix the piping structure. The sewer drainage pipe will need to be replaced via a structural lining. This allows the parties involved to eradicate cracks and breaks in the pipe without digging and causing damage to lawns or aboveground structures, such as a home’s slab.

Using an advanced pipe lining process, a “sleeve” is created inside of the pipe. This sleeve serves as a seamless liner that is able to seal and eliminate every type of water leak. This new pipe allows for renewed drain flow and diminishes the risk of additional root penetration, as no leaks continue to attract other root systems.

How to Prevent Tree Roots from Damaging Your Sewer Lines

Paying attention to how your pipes are draining, and responding to changes promptly, are the most important steps to take to prevent massive root damage. If you notice a slow down in your drainage and believe new roots may be the culprit, there are a few simple methods to kill off the small roots that may be infiltrating your pipes. Copper sulfate, available at your local hardware store, and rock salt are known root killers and can be flushed down your pipes to prevent new growth. There are other products on the market as well, specifically designed to kill and dissolve roots. Being proactive in your battle against root invasion and damage can save you thousands of dollars.

If you find that a tree root intrusion has altered the flow of your drainage pipes, it is important to act immediately. Tree roots damage happens fast and extensively, thanks to their ability to adapt and grow within new environments. As a result, homeowners or property managers of commercial buildings must act as soon as they believe roots have penetrated their home or structure’s sewage pipes. To learn more about your specific issue, please contact Florida’s pipe lining experts, Pipelining Technologies, Inc.!

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