From clogged street sewer or drain pipe to clogged sewer main lines, any obstruction in your plumbing and drainage systems can cause some serious problems. Once a drain starts clogging, the problem gets worse over time, as more materials accumulate by sticking to a pre-existing clog. After time, it can be difficult to get the clog out at all, and drain repair contractors may have to take apart drain pipes to access and remove the problem.
Clogged sewer lines are even worse than clogged household drains. Clogging in your sewer line can go unnoticed for months or even years as paper products, grease, and other materials slowly build up along the sides of the pipe. Eventually, the obstruction can cause pipe fracturing, water leaks, and worst of all, backflow into your home.
You can take steps to prevent drain clogs, sewer clogs, and damage to your sewer main line. A few key practices, along with occasional maintenance, can help you make sure everything stays in working condition
At A1 Sewer & Drain Services, our team of experienced NJ sewer contractors specializes in helping local NJ homeowners drain repair and clear out sewer lines and drain lines. We’ll help you fix your sewer and drain problems, as well as helping you stop it from happening again. Here are some tips, tricks, products, and professional sewer service options that can help you prevent problems with your home’s plumbing and sewer line.
No More Clogged Sewer Main Lines
Sewer main line clogs are surprisingly common at New Jersey homes. They accumulate very gradually over long periods of time, as small holes, cracks, or tree roots in a pipe provide a jagged place where debris can cling.
As much as most NJ homeowners try to prevent themselves from accidentally flushing or draining materials that aren’t designed to break down in water, foreign materials can still make their way into your sewer line, causing a sewer clog.
Preventing Sewer Clogs
To prevent your sewer lateral line from clogging, you can take several key steps that can prevent the need for sewer cleaning or sewer repair in the future, potentially saving hundreds or even thousands of dollars in sewer cleaning or even sewer repair:
- Don’t flush paper products that aren’t toilet paper. Toilet paper is specifically designed to dissolve quickly and easily in water, preventing sewer clogs in all but the weakest plumbing systems. This isn’t true of other paper hygiene and cleaning products, which are generally designed to absorb as much fluid as possible without breaking apart. \
This includes paper towels, feminine products, diapers, makeup removal pads, and facial tissues. If you flush these items regularly, they can build up in your drain pipes or sewer lateral, eventually leading to a serious clog.
- Don’t let cooking grease down your kitchen drain. Cooking grease is a major offender in drain and sewer line clogs. To prevent the need for professional drain cleaning or sewer cleaning, keep grease out of your sinks.
- Keep an eye on the trees. Tree root growth is a major cause of sewer clogs and sewer pipe damage. You may want to consider either removing large trees near your sewer line, or installing physical or chemical barriers underground to deter tree root incursion.
- Know the warning signs of a sewer clog. When your sewer line is clogged, it’s important to know the red flags you should look out for.
That way, you can get professional sewer service sooner rather than later. Signs of a clog include widespread drain backups throughout your house, gargling or bubbling drains, and sometimes sewer backup. As a bonus, it will also prevent valuables from falling down the drain.
Unclogging Your Sewer Pipe with Hydro Jetting Service in NJ
Although it’s best to avoid sewer clogs in the first place, it can still happen occasionally, despite your best efforts. When you’re faced with a clogged sewer line, you’ll need to call a local NJ sewer cleaning company. Professional sewer cleaning is a quick, unintrusive, and relatively inexpensive procedure.
To clear out blockage from inside a sewer line, we use hydro jetting. This technique uses machinery and hoses that emit streams of water at very high pressures, like a pressure washer. These water jets allow us to quickly and effectively remove all kinds of debris, from grease and paper to thick tree roots.
Sewer jetting equipment involves nozzles of different sizes, for different jobs.
These nozzles have one large stream coming out the front to break up the clog, and then several smaller streams angled backward to wash away residual degree. Sewer cleaning contractors lower the jetting hose into the sewer line. As it moves along, it blasts away the material in front of it, allowing it to pass through the line.
With professional sewer hydro jetting, your sewer clog problem will be taken care of in no time.
No More Drain Cleaning
Clogged household drains are one of the most common plumbing problems. Homeowners often try to clear out the problem themselves with a drain snake or caustic drain cleaning fluid, but this usually isn’t all that effective. A clogged drain will empty out slowly, and can often give off unpleasant odors from rotting paper or food materials.
Drain cleaning is an unpleasant chore, and not only that, but home methods usually don’t even work. To avoid the need for professional drain cleaning, it helps to prevent your drains from clogging up in the first place.
Preventing Clogged Drains in your Sinks, Toilets, and Showers
It’s easier than you’d think to prevent clogged drains in your home. Obviously, it helps not to flush paper towels and feminine products, and to keep grease and food scraps from going down your kitchen sink. This can go a long way toward keeping your pipes and drains clear.
There are also several products that you can buy to add an extra layer of protection to your sink drains and shower drains. Here are a few useful drain protectors that our NJ sewer contractors recommend:
- DrainWig. The DrainWig is a unique device designed for the most common cause of clogged shower drains: hair. Whether you have long hair that needs daily conditioning, or your hair is very short, you’ll still end up with hair in your shower drain.
The DrainWig has a chain that extends downward into your drain, with a decorative top cover that fits over the top of the drain. Ever few months, you can pull the chain up to remove any hair that’s accumulated in the drain.
The DrainWig is available for both bathtub drains and shower drains.
- ADD-A-TRAP The ADD-A-Trap is a small plumbing device that you can install directly beneath a kitchen or bathroom sink drain. To clean it, you simply unscrew it and remove the catch tray.
- Clog No More! The Clog No More! is a simple grate that you insert into a sink or bathtub drain, with a tab facing outward for removal. When hair collects in the Clog No More!, you simply remove it to clean or replace it.
- Stop-a-Clog Drain Protector. The Stop-a-Clog Drain Protector fits standard shower and bathtub drains, keeping hair out completely for easy cleaning.
Professional Drain Cleaning Service
Occasionally, one of your home drains may develop a clog, leaving you in need of professional drain cleaning service. When a clog is severe, or located deep in the drain pipes, you may not be able to reliably access it yourself. You may want to call a professional for emergency drain cleaning service if:
- Augurs, drain cleaner, and other methods aren’t working. If you’ve already tried to fix it yourself, but it just doesn’t seem o be working, the obstruction might be out of reach. You should call a plumber or a sewer and drain contractor, who can accurately locate and remove the problem.
- More than one plumbing fixture is draining slowly. This can indicate that the problem is down in your sewer main line, and you may need hydro jetting service to remove it.
- The toilet or drain is overflowing. This can be a catastrophe. Shut off your water main and call a drain repair professional for help. You’ll avoid costly water damage to your property, and get the problem fixed as quickly as possible.
No More Sewer Repair
Just as sewer main lines can develop clogs and obstructions, they can also break and crack. The symptoms of a broken sewer line can often be similar to those of a sewer clog, but they require more extensive sewer repair service. Fortunately, trenchless sewer repair is a relatively quick and non-invasive way to patch up or replace your sewer pipes from the inside.
It’s actually relatively rare for NJ homeowners to need sewer repair service, since most newer pipes don’t corrode or break particularly easily. However, tree root incursion, old metal pipes, and other issues can lead to underground water leaks, burst sewer pipes, and other reasons for sewer repair.
Preventing Sewer Main Line Damage
Prevention is key if you want to avoid the need for extensive sewer main line repair. Some of the best ways to prevent damage to your sewer line include:
- When buying an older home in NJ, call a professional for sewer inspection. Sewer service contractors will be able to lower a specialized camera system into the sewer line, finding cracks, scale, calcification, tree roots, and other problems. Getting this done early will help you avoid a sudden burst pipe or sewer backflow. If you have older metal pipes that are in poor condition, contractors may recommend sewer line replacement before you move in.
- Prevent tree root damage. Large trees or robust woody shrubs growing too close to your sewer line may need to be removed, and with new landscaping, you should only plant small, low-growing plants and shrubs in the area. Fast-growing species should be replaced every decade or so, to prevent them from moving into the sewer line. You can also consider commercial root killers, which help maintain a chemical barrier to keep roots away from the sewer.
- Consider having sewer cleaning every few years. Sewer maintenance helps prevent clogs and other sewer problems. Many experts recommend having your sewer line snaked periodically, to clear out small clogs so that large obstructions won’t form.
- Know how old your sewer pipes are, and when they were last replaced. Modern PVC pipes have an incredibly long lifespan, but older copper and cast iron pipes only last a few decades. It helps to know when your home’s pipes were replaced, so that you can be aware of the point in time when they’re likely to start developing problems.
Trenchless Sewer Repair Service in NJ
If you do end up needing professional sewer repair service, trenchless sewer repair is the easiest and most convenient options for NJ homeowners. In the past, sewer repairs usually required excavation, but nowadays, most jobs don’t require any substantial digging. There are several main techniques for trenchless sewer repair and sewer replacement, depending on the situation and the extent of damage to the pipes.
- Pipe lining techniques are used to patch cracks and holes in pipes that are otherwise structurally intact. The liners are made from resin and fiberglass, and while still flexible, they’re pulled into place with machinery. Then, heat or ultraviolet radiation is used to harden them in place, creating a “pipe within a pipe” that will restore normal water flow. Pipe lining is recommended in many cases of sewer damage and underground water leaks, since it’s faster and less labor-intensive than replacing the pipe completely.
- Pipe bursting. Pipe bursting is a trenchless sewer replacement technique used for burst or collapsed pipes, which aren’t stable or intact enough for pipe lining. Machinery is used to break apart the old pipe with a “bursting head,” as cables pull a new section of pipe in behind it. Contractors only need to dig two small holes, which serve as entry points. The new pipe section is sealed into place with heat or steam to complete the process.
Trenchless sewer repair has many benefits over sewer excavation, including:
- No lawn and landscape damage. Sewer excavation requires a large trench in your yard, and after the job is complete, you have to wait for months until you can plant grass over it again. Trenchless sewer repair circumvents this problem completely.
- No damage to your driveway or concrete patios. Driveways, patios, and other concrete areas need to be removed or damaged for sewer excavation. This isn’t a problem with trenchless sewer repair.
If you suspect a problem with your sewer line, you’ll notice problems like multiple clogged drains, backflow, or wet areas in your yard. If this is the case, you should call an emergency sewer repair company as soon as you can. Experienced sewer repair contractors can advise you about the best sewer repair methods, or whether you’ll need sewer replacement instead.
To find out more about drain cleaning, sewer cleaning, preventive maintenance, and more, call us any time at A1 Sewer & Drain, at 201-645-0888.