How can I prevent a sewer backup?

Sewer line backups can be caused by damage to your property’s sewer line or from a problem in the city main sewer. Tree root infiltration is the #1 cause of sewer spills and backups in your sewer line on private property .

No backup event is ever wanted, but a backup that flows outside your house is better than inside. To prevent indoor backups, hire an experienced sewer plumber to install a "backflow relief" device on the outdoor portion of your sewer lateral. There are numerous devices and methods for providing backflow relief. Pipe Spy can help you choose the right backflow reflief device and placement of it on your property.

The #2 cause of backups and spills is the buildup of fats, oils and grease in the sewer line ("F.O.G."). NEVER pour cooking oil, animal fat or grease in a sink or drain. Even a little every day builds up over time. Scrape and wipe cooking pans, utensils and dishes into the garbage before you rinse them in the sink.

Pipe Spy recommends that homeowners schedule a sewer pipe inspection periodically – every 4-5 years, or more frequently if you’ve had problems in the past. Snaking and Hydro-jetting can help clear the line if the video inspection shows that it’s needed. Stay on top of root intrusion and build-up of materials in your sewer line, and you might never have a sewer backup event.