The sewer system is perhaps the most important system in every home. It plays a significant role in the proper functioning of your home’s plumbing system. And that’s why a sewer blocked or broken down sewer line constitutes a plumbing emergency that needs immediate attention.
The lifespan of a sewer line is determined by various factors, including the sewer pipes’ material, the age of the residential property, and the environment. On average, your sewer line can last for 60 years. However, it can last longer depending on the materials that your underground pipes are made of. So, the frequency of sewer line replacement mainly depends on the piping material.
Older homes, for instance, may have sewer line pipes made of hardened clay, lasting between 50 and 60 years. Pipes made from cast iron can last anywhere between 75 and 100 years. PVC pipes have a lifespan of 100 years, making them the longest-lasting option. Therefore, if you have an older residential property, it would be best to investigate when it so that you can get a good idea about the condition of the pipes. However, if you can’t get a good idea of what your sewer system might look like, here are seven telltale signs that you need to replace your home’s sewer line.
1. Strange Odors Around Your Property
Unpleasant odors on your property are among the first signs that there’s something wrong with your sewer line. It is normal for your sewer line drains to develop unpleasant smells because wastewater passes through them. However, a properly functioning plumbing system should never have odors coming from the drains.
The escape of toxic sewer gas may indicate a cracked drain pipe along the sewer line. If you notice unpleasant odors lingering in your home, a professional plumber should conduct a thorough inspection to discover their source.
2. Frequent Clogs
Sometimes, one of your pipes can get clogged and cause a drain backup. Things like grease from your kitchen, hair, toilet paper, and paper towels can block your pipes, making it difficult or impossible to use your amenities. An experienced plumber can examine and clean your pipes to alleviate the problem. If the clogs are stubborn, the professionals can clear them using sewer jetting techniques.
If multiple drains within your plumbing system keep clogging, there may be a deeper reason for the problem. You may be dealing with a broken sewer line. In this case, you’ll need your plumbing service to do more than unclog your pipes. The professionals will comprehensively inspect your entire plumbing system to establish the condition of your home’s main sewer line. A broken sewer line needs a replacement, not repairs. Sewer line repairs in this scenario will only provide a temporary solution, and you risk raw sewage backing up on your property.
3. Slow Drains
Slow drains can occur as a result of blockages in the pipes that serve particular sinks, showers, tubs, or toilets. When you have several plumbing fixtures that drain slowly, it could be due to sewer line problems. Your sewer line may break because of ground settling around your home. On the other hand, it could be due to tree roots infiltrating the sewer line, obstructing the flow of its pipes. If you notice that one of your drains is slow, you should contact your plumber to examine it. If cleaning the drains doesn’t solve the problem, the experts will check your sewer pipes and, depending on their condition, recommend repairs or sewer line replacement.
4. Lush and Soggy Spots in Your Lawn
The vegetation on your lawn should remain consistent if your sewer line is functioning properly. Changes in lawn health can occur when wastewater collects under some patches of vegetation, altering the soil’s moisture levels and nutrients. If you realize that some patches of your grass are greener and thriving more than the rest, you might be dealing with a sewer line problem. The grass in these parts may grow faster than in the surrounding areas because of water leaking out of cracks in the underground pipes.
Along with changes to the color of your lawn, the leaking wastewater can collect in one part, making your lawn soggy. As a result, sinkholes may develop around the break, making your yard area unusable until the sewer pipes are repaired. A soggy area in your lawn can indicate pipe leaks that need repair. Call your plumbing service once you notice soggy and lush spots on your lawn.
5. Pest Infestation
Increasing pests in and around your residential property indicate sewer line issues. The dampness and odors from sewer systems attract pests. Rodents and pests love the conditions a broken or collapsing sewer line creates, so you might see them nesting on your property or in your house. You’ll have to call pest control and your plumbing service to eliminate this problem. The plumber will inspect your piping and provide quick solutions to prevent the situation from worsening. Then, pest control experts will disinfect everything in your home to eliminate the pest and prevent diseases from spreading.
6. Mold Growth on Your Walls
A sewer line runs from your fixtures and travels out of the house through the walls. When your sewer line starts to malfunction, indoor humidity levels can increase. High humidity levels can lead to mold growth on the walls of your house. In many cases, mold spores appear on walls behind plumbing fixtures, but you can also see them in other parts.
Mold can cause many health issues from a cough and a runny nose to long-term respiratory complications. If you notice mold spores or color changes on your walls, you should call your plumber to schedule an appointment. These experts will establish whether the mold growth is due to sewer line problems and ways to resolve the issue effectively.
7. Gurgling Sounds From Your Toilets
The other common sign of a failing sewer line is toilets producing gurgling sounds when flushed. Although it’s normal for toilets to produce sounds when flushed, it’s not normal if they flush slowly or produce sounds when no one is using them. Unusual sounds from your toilets indicate possible clogs somewhere in your sewer pipes.
If wastewater fails to go down your sewer pipe because the pipe is clogged, it comes back and generates air bubbles in your toilet bowl. If your toilets produce gurgling sounds when flushed, contact your plumber immediately to avoid major sewage problems. Depending on the extent of the clogs and the condition of the sewer piping, the professional might recommend repairs or full replacement.
Contact the Sewer Line Experts Today!
Sewer system problems are the worst nightmares of every homeowner. A sewer line with major damage is not only expensive to repair, but it can cause problems such as pest infestation, mold growth, burst pipes, a flooded basement, or backed-up sewage. The best way to prevent these problems is by scheduling regular inspections and maintenance to help catch sewer line issues early. Don’t ignore the above signs of sewer system problems. If left unattended for a long time, sewer line issues can compromise the integrity of your home and even lead to property loss.
If you notice these signs, contact our sewer line experts at Sunrise Plumbing for a full plumbing inspection. These experts will determine the condition of your home’s sewer system and make a replacement to keep your home safe and comfortable. We also offer water softeners, water heaters, camera inspections, hydro-jetting, drain cleaning, and sump pump services throughout Rockwall, TX and the surrounding regions. Call us today for reliable and professional plumbing services.