So you suspect you need a sewer repair expert to pay a visit. There’s something strange going on in your pipes and it may be time to think about bringing in a professional. Let’s talk about the warning signs to look for to confirm your thoughts.
So we sat down with Nathan Peña, one of our Plumbing Specialists at Smith Plumbing, Heating, Cooling, & Electrical and asked him what homeowners should look for when deciding if they need a main sewer line repair.
Right before he heads out to a client’s house for a sewer job, he gives them a call. “I never ask, “How is your day going?” because… I’m visiting you for a sewer call… I know it’s not a good day! I always offer to pick you up a Starbucks on the way, because I know this type of service call is no fun for homeowners!”
How To Know If Your Main Line Is Clogged
Is your plumbing not working as normal or something just seems off? Maybe it’s draining slowly, or there’s some weird sound, or bad smell.
Here are some warning signs that indicate you may need a main sewer line repair:
Drain Backing Up Or Persistent Slow Drainage
If you are seeing constant drain back ups or slow drains happening at your home, we often have to install a standard sewer line cleanout before we could do a drain inspection.
Gurgling Sounds In The Drain
This is a huge sign to immediately stop using all water in your home and call Smith Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical. We come and do a nice drain cleaning and offer a camera inspection to actually figure out where the repair is needed.
Foul Sewage Odor
Yeah, this is most indicative that you have either a very clogged sewer line or a broken pipe. The number one thing you should do is find and get the pipe fixed. This should stop these odors from coming up in your home.
Pools Of Water On The Lawn
If water coming up in your yard is not a normal thing, that’s a huge sign that either sewage is seeping out of your pipes, or you may have a break in the water line. We will need to figure out what the problem is and repair it as soon as possible.
Flooding In The Yard
This usually happens when someone has performed some sort of DIY pipe repair in the past, and it wasn’t repaired correctly. For example, they didn’t do a proper connection on that pipe and over time it just created a huge problem. So in this case, we’d have to dig out that section of the plumbing, determine the proper connections were inspected and then proceed to repair the problem.
Foundation problems are a huge sign that you’re having sewer backups in the home. It may not be a backup that you’re seeing since the drains are underground. But the sewer and water will eventually find their way up towards the surface, and that’s where you’ll start seeing cracking and foundation issues. Worst case scenario: You don’t get the pipe repaired and you have to get your house mud-jacked. That’s a very costly repair on top of having to get your sewer line done as well.
Reason For The Main Sewer Line Clog
The worst thing, believe it or not, is going to be your hair that goes down the bathtub, especially if you’ve already been having sewer problems in the past or any sewer backups already.
That extra stuff clings right on and kind of closes that pipe up even quicker. Food down your kitchen pipe is another really bad thing. Scooping food into the sink can be a problem if your drains are not designed right.
Flushable wipes too. These things can result in making your home not much of a home as far as usefulness.
How To Fix The Roots In Sewer Line
Sometimes your yard will grow around and into your sewer line. A sign this has happened is a green spot in the lawn. Typically, you’ll see a random strip of green in the yard or a low spot. That’s because everything is going towards that water and causing extra settling.
Preventive Maintenance for Sewer Lines
Anything before 1982 they used cast iron piping, and that piping is notorious for rusting out and you’ll start to see a lot of times issues like drain back ups, slight bubbling, or you’ll see black water, which is a huge sign that there’s going to be a rusted out pipe in the home and that needs to be taken care of as quickly as possible.
They thought it was a good idea to use lead piping for water . And that’s a whole other subject we can get into for sure, but that will cause corrosion inside the pipe, and the pipe basically closes up on itself. When you see that, you are drinking the metal that has deteriorated.
Avoid Extreme Temperatures
Colorado Springs is notorious for the crazy up and down weather. There are cold snaps and that can cause sewer problems, into the worst case scenario and potentially freeze your lines. A lot of the pipes we have here in Colorado Springs area are right on that frost line. Read about the coldest day on record here.
What To Expect From A Sewer Camera Inspection
Our drain technicians will teach you how to unclog main sewer line, come out, and they play a crucial role in this process. They do a full inspection on every drain in the home, and we have a checklist that we make sure that everything is either a pass or fail on that drain to make sure that you don’t call us back with a potential problem a week later.
Testing Of Different Drains
First step. We have a system of testing multiple different drains to potentially recreate and regain control of the situation. Any information the homeowner can provide as far as if they heard a gurgle in the toilet, or they were running the shower and they got out and the toilet bowl water was lower than normal. Any of that information, anything they can remember is huge.
Sewer Line Cleaning
Second Step. Once understanding the situation, we perform a drain cleaning to make sure that the lines are completely unclogged so all the water is out of the system, even if it wasn’t backing up, we need to do that.
Line Inspection Camera For Health Analysis
The third step is sending a camera down so we can do a sewer line inspection and repair.
We have a different way of looking and listening to the drains. We have a different set of ears as far as how it comes to listening to those drains that we can recommend any sort of repairs, or cleanings, or replacements that are needed on that.
Tiered Solution Recommendations
The best part about calling Smith Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical is that we always offer tiered solutions. Low price band-aid solutions so you can quickly use your system again, however it may not be a long term solution. All the way up to premium services which would completely solve future issues.
We also work with monthly payments and offer quite a few different options on how we can get that covered as well.
If our plumbing and sewer services are required to establish standard usage, we have to speak with decision-makers. Anyone that is on the title of the home, we will need them there. In the case a repair is necessary, it can be a surprise expense. Most people don’t plan for this type of situation.
The Smith Difference
If you suspect problems or a main sewer line repair is necessary, stop using water and schedule a time for us to come out and evaluate the situation. The more water in the lines, the higher the chance it will seep out of the pipe if there is a break in the pipe. Learn about the main line and about preventive maintenance for your home sewer from one of our sewer line experts.
Smith Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical has been in the local area since 1974, it’s a very tight knit community and we drive bright pink trucks, so we’re not out running you and we do a good job at the work that we do. You can give us a call at 719-392-4269 or visit our website. We will get you squared away with a free inspection on the plumbing side. Visit our other page to know about ways to clean sewer and drainage lines.