Sewage backup can happen to anyone at any given time. It is one of the most common water damage disasters that homeowners have to deal with. Sewage backup doesn’t only damage your home. It can also be hazardous for your family’s health as sewage has chemical and biological contaminants.
Health dangers from sewage backup
Take immediate actions to prevent illnesses caused by sewage backup. The dirty water can seep into one’s body via open wounds and may cause Hepatitis A, Rotavirus, E.Coli, among others. Backup sewage can also worsen conditions such as asthma and other allergies. That aside, the dirty water can also cause mold growth inside your home.
There can be many reasons why this backup happens. Here are the common causes of sewage backup and some preventive measures you can do to protect your home from such water damage.
Causes of Sewage backup
Sewer backups don’t cause most water problems. Most often than not, it happens because of damages in the city’s main sewer line, your home sewer line, or both. There are, however, more to it than that.
Trees and shrubs look for moisture and make their way in to sewer line cracks and pipe joints. These tree roots can create damages to homes’ sewer lines as they grow bigger. They grow in pipes causing holes and blockages, and they can wrap around your sewer line and crush your pipes. If the city tree is responsible for the sewage backup, you can contact your plumber to alert the local government and fix it.
Cracked Sewer Lines
Cast iron, cement, and clay are the common materials for old homes’ sewer lines. These materials can break over time and thus cause sewer damage. Most residential properties today, however, use PVC, clay, or Orangeburg for their sewer lines. These materials are more durable, and they last for a far longer time. Still, you can’t expect them to remain forever. In time, these materials will eventually break and crack.
Old sewer system
The American Society of Civil Engineers reported that the country’s miles of sewer lines are on average more than thirty years old. The number of homes in the United States is rapidly increasing, and the aging sewer system is no longer equipped to manage the demand. This aging sewer system is also one of the reasons for many flooded basements and overflows.
Clogged Sewer Lines
We often take drains for granted and drain everything down the pipe: fast food wastes, hairs, oil, wipes, and more. We flush them right down and don’t look back. These things can cause clogs and eventually lead to sewage backup.
Prevent Sewage backup
There are several ways to prevent sewer problems in your homes.
1. Proper garbage disposal
It may sound easy, but sometimes, we still need to be reminded. Dispose of the trash properly to avoid clogs in your sewer lines. Don’t throw everything or pour down everything in your drain, especially grease or cooking oil. The grease/oil cools off and solidifies in the drain causing the clog. Items such as paper towels, tissues, wipes, and cloth diapers take a long time to disintegrate. These things don’t belong to the drain. Putting drain traps is helpful to catch that food waste and other solid objects.
2. Put up a backwater prevention valve
Some homeowners invest in a backwater valve and install one in their basement. The backwater valve lets sewage go out but not back in. It can be your final line of defense in case of sewage backups.
3. Proper drain maintenance
Clean the drains regularly. Don’t just use chemical drain cleaners. Use baking soda, white vinegar, and warm water to flush your drain monthly.
4. Schedule an inspection
It may be hard to spot the signs of sewer backups in your home if you can hire a professional plumbing contractor to conduct a thorough inspection of your sewer line. They are trained to identify the water damage signs before it happens. They can also make recommendations about the changes you can make to prevent sewage backups.
Roto-Rooter is a Plumbing and Drain Service provider that makes sure that your pipes and your plumbing system are working correctly. Give us a call, and our team of professional plumbers is ready to help you with your water system and plumbing issues.