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Main Causes of Sewer Problems

A1-Sewer-&-Septic-ServiceModern-day plumbing is arguably one of the greatest inventions of mankind, next to the Internet and the smartphone. It’s also something that we don’t think much about until we see dirty water backing up in our kitchen or bathroom sink, or our bathtub.

If you have water backing up in one of your drains, you want to get down to the bottom of the problem and you want it fixed right away. What could be causing the problem? It probably comes down to one of these three common problems.

1. A Blocked Drain

Perhaps the most common cause of a sewer problem is a blockage located in the drain. If your toilet is backed up, or if your bathtub or sink isn’t draining properly, you probably have a clogged drain. If all of the other drains in the house are working fine and the problem is isolated to one individual drain, then you likely have a problem with that drain only.

You can try plunging the drain and if that doesn’t work, you can try cleaning it out with a wire hanger with a hook at the end or a Zip-It drain cleaning device, available for about $2.50 at Wal-Mart, Home Depot, or on Amazon.

If you’re still having difficulty getting the drain to clear, you can use a snake (cable auger) designed for homeowners. You can also contact a professional plumber/drain cleaner, but we do not recommend using harsh chemical drain cleaners. There is almost always a manual solution that will do the trick without harming the environment, or your health!

Almost all clogged drains are caused by improper use of a drain. For example, you should never pour cooking grease down a kitchen drain, and you shouldn’t flush anything but toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. Even paper towels and tissues can lead to clogging.

2. Pipe Problems (Cracked or Collapsed)

If you have old pipes, they may have begun to crack or they may have collapsed. Collapsed or cracked pipes are a common cause of sewer problems. If your pipes are compromised because of age, they can require major repairs. At A-1 Sewer & Septic Service Inc., we have been repairing sewers lines for over 40 years, and we offer trenchless sewer repairs.

3. Thirsty Tree Roots

Do you have a yard filled with beautiful trees? Perhaps you only have one big tree in your yard, or perhaps you have a few trees but they seem like they’re far back enough from the house that they shouldn’t cause any problems.

Even if your trees seem like they’re a good distance from your home, that won’t necessarily stop thirsty tree roots from seeking out water from your underground sewer lines! In a constant search for a water source, tree roots can grow into pipes, they can grow around pipes and sometimes the force can crush them, leading to clogs and backups.

Note: If you have a septic system, your septic tank may be overflowing because it needs to be emptied. If you’re having septic system issues, we can help you with that as well!

Do you have a drain problem that needs attention? If so, contact us to schedule a service call with one of our Kansas City plumbers!