Main Drain & Sewer Backup

Floods are considered as one of the main causes behind the extensive water damage to the homes and businesses. Floods are not only responsible for causing sewage from the home sanitary line but also main drain back up into the houses through main drain pipelines. Similar to the other home systems, people never pay much attention to the sewer pipes until they stop working properly.

It is essential to explain here that the plumbing system of any house normally handles the each and every drop of water from sinks, washbasins, and commodes. In addition to the water, the plumbing system and the drain pipes also catch every strand of hair, food, soap, grease, shampoo along with laundry detergents and etc. sometimes these things clog the drain pipelines which ultimately result in a sewer backup.

There can be various other causes of the clog and drain back up along with the flood and other above-mentioned reasons which can be unseen and hard to determine. It is important to know the causes of drain backups as it will help you in troubleshooting the problem. Moreover, if you know the reason of clog or drain back up, you can determine whether you can make a quick fix by yourself or you need a professional plumber.

As mentioned before, floods are one of the main reasons for causing extensive water damage to homes and businesses. These drain backups are not only difficult and expensive to repair but they also create health hazards. It is pertinent to explain here that according to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I) mostly the homeowner and business insurance policies don’t cover the drain backups unless it added specifically to the policy. Normally, the drain back up coverage is available from the insurance companies at a nominal cost of $40-$50 monthly. Let us explore some of the causes of main drain backups and how to prevent them.

Causes of Main Drain Backups

Blockages due to Tree Roots and Shrubs

One of the main reasons that can cause main drain backup is the shrubs and trees that are seeking moisture and water from the earth and can make their way into sewer lines and ultimately result in cracks which further lead to an extensive damage to the underground sewerage system. At the start, the problem may be small i.e. creating a small crack in the underground pipeline. However, the problem can be severe as the tree or shrub continues to grow which ultimately will damage the underground pipeline and can cause the blockage. In addition to these, the tree roots and shrubs can also travel a long way and in such cases, it is difficult to determine where the blockage is and treatment will also be expensive.

If the problem is caused by the city trees, you or your plumber can directly contact city administration and let them know about the issue. Normally the samples of the roots are used to help identify the trees that have caused the problem and who is responsible for the cleanup. In some situations, the blockages are caused due to the combination of city and private trees. In such cases, the cost of the cleanup can be distributed between the city and the property owner.

City Sewer Blockages

Sometimes a blockage can occur in the city sewer and if not identified in within time, the problem can spread across to the underground connected lines and can cause drain backups to the homes and offices. Usually, the city is responsible to treat such issues; however, if the blockage spread across to the homes and offices, owners are responsible to bear the expenses of cleanup and repairs. In case of severe sewage issue i.e. the water is entering to your basement, it is important to notify the city administration immediately so that the problem can be identified and treated accordingly within time to avoid further damages.

Heavy Rainfall

Unfortunately, the rainy season is also the biggest factor which can cause a number of problems for homeowners and offices including the main drain backup. The heavy downpour which is mixed with other factors from your neighborhood can result in a big disaster. For example, if you are living near the grassy or forestry area which has recently been paved or underdeveloped with heavy rainfall, you can face consistent main drain backup issues. Moreover, in remote areas, there is a limited capacity for every public sewer. As such, the heavy rainfall can cause major issues for sewer lines. Also, if the rainfall exceeds the capacity of the sewer line, the excess rainwater can come into your drain line and cause huge damage to your plumbing system.

How to Prevent Main Drain Backups

Dispose of the Paper Towels/ Sanitary Products Properly

It is very essential to dispose of the paper towels, diapers and related sanitary products properly to avoid any sewage and main drain back up problems not only for your own property but also for the city main.

Dispose of the Grease Properly

While cooking, it is important that the oil should be poured into a proper heat-resistant container and must be disposed of properly when the oil cools off by avoiding pouring it into the drain. Most importantly, you must avoid washing grease down the drain with the hot water as it can create massive problems to the plumbing and piping system of your home as the oil and grease cool off, it can stick to the inner side of the drain pipe and ultimately result in a clog.

Install new Plastic Pipes

To avoid and prevent tree roots and shrubs entering into the underground drain pipeline, it is important to replace the old line with a new plastic pipe. Furthermore, if the problem continues i.e. roots and shrubs growing in your lateral, you must cut the roots and shrubs properly on regular basis.

Use Enzymes Regularly

Drain enzymes are great for maintaining a smooth flow of liquids, but they to not get rid of drain clogs! To avoid clogging and main drain backup, it is important to use enzyme treatment on a regular basis. Enzymes have the ability to eat away the entire gunk that accumulates to the pipelines. As the enzymes need time to grow in the pipes, it is important to pick a particular time; normally the night time is best for using enzymes. Put the enzymes in all the drains at once for the best effectiveness.

The sewer and main drain backups can cause severe damage to the property and also brings health risks as well. Also, the treatment and cleanup can be costly. As such, it is important to understand the reasons which cause the drain backups along with how to prevent such issues.

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