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Around the House: Signs of Clogged Sewers

March 1, 2016

A clogged sewer line is a problem that cannot be ignored. The water has no place to go and has the potential to come back through the household plumbing. To prevent this from occurring, it is important to be able to recognize the signs of a clogged sewer line before a disaster occurs.

Signs of a clogged sewer line may include several clogged fixtures, such as a toilet that isn’t flushing properly. One of the most obvious signs of a sewer drain clog is when more than one plumbing fixture backs up at once. If you suspect that you have a clogged sewer line start by checking other fixtures in the home such as the toilet and shower.

Toilets have a straight path to the sewer as well as the largest drain line. It is uncommon to have working toilets if the main sewer line is clogged. Other drains typically affected by a main line stoppage are those in the tub and shower so it is important to also check those drains for blockage. Visibly this could be slowed draining or existing excess.

Another sign to look for when you suspect a clogged sewer line may exist is any unexpected or unusual outcomes when using toilets or showers. If flushing the toilet results in water backing up, or coming up into the tub or shower, this is usually an indicator that your sewer drain is clogged. At the same time, if you’re doing a load of laundry and the water draining out of the washing machine causes the toilet to overflow, or backs up into the tub or shower, it could also indicate a sewer problem. Basically, be aware of any unusual activity in your home’s plumbing system.

Once you’ve confirmed a clogged sewer line, you should limit use of the plumbing in the home. To clear a clogged sewer line, a sewer drain snake is usually required.

Applewood recommends seeking professional assistance for the magnitude of this job, but if you feel capable there are sewer drain snakes available for rent. Whichever option you choose, the sewer drain should be cleared in a timely manner to reduce risk of unwanted repairs such as water damage and clean up.By being aware of the warning signs you can limit costly repairs and improve the overall efficiency of your home’s sewage system.

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