How to Prevent a Sewer Backup

It’s that time of year when spring cleaning is on your mind and you’re preparing for the nicer weather to return. You’re sorting your closets, cleaning out your pantry, making repairs and updating things around the house. One area that many people forget to focus on is their home’s plumbing.

As one of the most utilized parts of your home, a simple plumbing problem could mean major issues. Unfortunately, many property owners don’t realize an issue until it’s too late. This only emphasizes the importance of taking the necessary precautions and preventative measures with your sewer line.

In this post, you’ll learn more about sewer backups and sewer backup prevention to protect your home or property before your sewer line becomes a major problem.

Common causes of a sewer backup

Sewer backup is often a result of clogged pipes from your drains. It can lead to flooding basements and because its sewage tainted water, there is a high degree of contaminants that will be a risk to human health and environment.

Typically the sanitary sewage would be collected in underground sewer pipes. However, a blockage in the line will cause the sewage to backup into nearby pipes and drains, such as your toilet and sinks or showers.

Blockages can be caused by a variety of issues, including household materials getting caught in the pipes, roots infiltrating sewer pipes, or even excess rainwater. Although these problems and blockages may start off as small, they will slowly accumulate in your pipes and can cause bigger problems down the road.

Learn more about the most common causes of sewer backups.

Sewer Backup Prevention Tips

It’s important to make sure you’re doing everything you can to prevent a sewer backup. Follow these basic sewer line maintenance steps and tips to ensure you’re doing your part to prevent a sewer backup on your property.

  1. Stop allowing grease and food products to go down the kitchen sinkYou love to cook, but your favorite meals could be the culprits of clogged pipes. When you start putting anything and everything down the drain – cooking oils, sauces, coffee grounds, or even egg shells – you could end up with a major septic problem. Other items, such as fibrous vegetables like rice, pasta or even potatoes, could find their way into your pipes and cause major problems.To prevent a sewer backup, be mindful of what goes down the drain. Your pipes are not built to handle these food items and will almost always cause a blockage in the short or long term. When in doubt, properly dispose of these items by throwing them away.
  2. Flushing the wrong productsYou are always flushing toilet paper down the toilet, but what about flushable wipes? Do you try to flush feminine products, diapers, and paper towels? Unfortunately, these are not items that disintegrate like toilet paper will, including “flushable” wipes. Throwing these items in the trash can prevent a major problem in your home.Learn more about What Not to Flush.
  3. Schedule a professional inspection.In addition to taking a few daily preventative measures, you should be scheduling frequent sewer line inspections to be safe. We recommend scheduling a professional sewer line video inspection every 4-5 years to check for potential damages or blockages.

Sewer Backup Prevention: Taking Action

When you’re concerned about sewer backups and wondering what preventative measures you can take this year, consider these tips for your spring cleaning efforts. It may be the most important thing you do this year when it comes to your home’s safety, cleanliness, and longevity.

Need help with your backed-up sewer pipes? Pipe Spy has serviced the Bay Area for over 17 years and all work comes with our three-year service warranty. Contact us today to request a quote.