Three Common Things That Can Damage Your Sewer Lines

When the plumbing system in your home works properly, it sends all the waste that you flush down your toilet and any waste that heads down your sink to the sewer. As long as the sewer is in good condition, it will accept that debris and send it into the sewer system and move it a safe distance away from your home. A clog in the sewer line can lead to water backing up, foul odors and other problems. Though you may not know it, there are some common things that can significantly damage your sewer lines.


A number of companies now make wipes that they promise you can safely flush. These wipes let you clean up after using the bathroom easier and can increase your comfort too. The products are similar to baby wipes, which state right on the box not to flush them. While flushing one or two wipes shouldn’t cause too much damage, those wipes can wrap around each other in the pipes and cause clogs to form. Most wipes are not biodegradable and can lead to serious clogs that will take experts to remove.


Young children are often curious, but anytime your child enters the bathroom, you need to keep an eye on him or her. You can look online and see some of the horror stories that parents posted about their kids flushing toys down the toilet. Stuffed animals and larger toys made from metal or plastic can make the toilet back up and flood your bathroom floor with dirty water. Smaller toys can make it through the system and snag on corners or other parts of the pipes. Any debris you flush will reach this spot in the pipe and stop moving, which will lead to back ups.

Tree Roots

Even if you don’t live in the country, you still need to beware of tree roots. Roots reach out to the sewer lines because of the nutrients found in those lines. The tiniest of cracks is large enough for a root to get inside and start growing. That root can crack the line and allow more roots to take hold. You’ll then need to arrange for professionals to use a hydrostatic test pump, a small camera and other devices to find the location of those roots and then treat the roots. Professionals will also use products that keep the roots from reaching the pipes again.

Though you might flush some things down the toilet without thinking twice, you should stop before flushing wipes and keep your kids from flushing their toys. Professionals can fix the clogs caused by all these products and take care of tree roots growing in sewer lines too.

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