You’ve probably seen a driveway or sidewalk buckled from root growth, so it should be clear that they have the power to invade and then damage sewer lines. Roots can extend further from the trunk than the foliage above, so it’s often hard to rule out tree roots in a sewer line as the cause of toilet or multiple-drain backups. Or a foul smell in the yard from a leak.
Problems begin with fine hair-like roots making their way through any tiny opening, such as joints and cracks in the pipe, in search of water and nutrients. They’re powerful enough to widen any opening and grow into a “bird's nest” that covers the entire diameter of the pipe. Roots (large or small) trap grease and debris leading to more and more frequent sewer and drain cleaning.
Older clay and concrete pipes are the most vulnerable, followed by cast iron. Both were in common use 25 years ago and earlier. The most resistant lines are modern single-piece plastic lines.
INSPECTION AND ASSESSMENT
Our sewer and drain cleaning services begin with an in-pipe video camera inspection. That’s the most thorough and accurate way to determine if roots are indeed the problem, how far it’s developed, and where it is located. The live video also shows us the general condition of the line, and you can have a look yourself.
The traditional cleaning methods such as cabling (drain snaking) and augering (using rotating blades on a cable) may offer a good-enough temporary solution, but it’s likely the roots will soon grow back.
Hydro jetting’s high-pressure jets cut through most tree roots and scour away deposits and build up.
For spot repairs, we hand dig to expose a short section of the line containing the problem. As well as removing and replacing that section we’ll also remove nearby external roots.
With older lines or extensive damage, a sewer line replacement is the only dependable way forward. Years ago this meant equipment digging a trench from your home or business out to the street, and often included breaking through concrete. We now offer trenchless pipe relining.
This option still involves digging in one or two small spots for access but leaves you with a single seamless line.