While your wastewater or sewer utility is responsible for maintenance on your street’s main sewer lines, you as a homeowner are responsible for all the pipes in your home and all the service lines that run to the mainline. There are plenty of things that can go wrong with these pipes to cause backups.
Your home’s pipes will undoubtedly vary from the diagram below, but this is a fair approximation of most set ups. This excludes homes with septic tanks, which have their own unique perils.
Common Causes Of A Sewer Drain Backup
- Separated Joints: Underground pipes aren’t solid, and can disconnect at the joint. This causes wastewater or sewage to back up into your home through drains.
- Root Damage: Trees and their roots may not be an issue when pipes are installed and trees are young, but years of growth can lead to issues later.
- Cracked Pipes: Temperature, ground movement, roots, clogs and poor installation can cause cracks which lead to backups into your yard or home.
- Clogged Pipes: Clogs can be made of hair, kitchen grease, yard debris, diapers, or even paper products. They are the most common cause of sewer backups and are entirely preventable.
- Mainline Backups: Weather, natural disasters, vandalism, and infrastructure breakdown can all lead to unavoidable sewer line issues.