roots in sewer linegreenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
we had the sewer back up for the first time and we called a plumber to clean it out. well, it backed up again 3 days later. he got about a half gallon of roots out of it. my significant other is sure the line is collapsed. any ideas? we used copper sulfate down it but it still is slow in draining.
-- js (email@example.com), February 03, 2002
If it is tree roots in the drainfield, you will need to remove the trees. Only good fix. You can play around with root pruning, and so on, but those are temp fixes. Get rid of the trees. Yes, that can be painful, but either the trees have to go, or the drainfield has to move to a new location.
If the drainfield collapsed, you need to dig a new one. Without trees nearby.
If this is the line going from your house to the septic tank, you need to dig in a new, solid, strong pipe to save the tree. Getting rid of the offending tree(s) is still a good idea as they always seem to find the pipe joint or heave the pipe, but you can pay for _good_ pipe with solid joints & keep the tree.
You might be able to cut down the tree, and your old line will stay clear. But, it has _some_ root damage & entery points, so you might need to replace it anyhow. It takes a lot of plumber work to truely remove all root residue from a pipe, I'm sure there is another gallon or 2 of growth in there causing problems yet. And it only comes back again. and again.
In short, keep trees away from the entire septic system, and you need to establish which part of your system is damaged, how much damage you have, & go from there.
-- paul (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 03, 2002.
If you need to have this done again, use Roto-Rooter. They will guarantee their work for a year. They advised us to use a root dissolver at least once a year.
-- Cindy in NY (email@example.com), February 03, 2002.
I work for the sewer dept. of our city, and that is a common problem with the old, clay tile laterals...if you live in the city, and are hooked to a city sewer, you could also put some rock salt down a clean-up once in a while...roots don't like that one bit, and die off. Renting a electric snake and doing the job yourself is another option a couple of times a year, to keep problems from arising. However, if you want to take care of the problem once and for all, either have your lateral lined, a rather new thing, and not all areas have a company that does it, or dig it up and replace your line with plastic. Lining is $$, but if you don't want your lawn all dug up, you might think about it. If your lateral is fairly shallow, however, you could probably dig it up and replace the line past the tree roots yourself, and there are plenty of plumbing supply companies that could steer you in the right direction concerning the fittings and pipe you would need to do it the right way.
-- Joe (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 03, 2002.
We had that problem when we bought this 120 year old farmhouse too, we fixed it ourselves by digging up the old clay tile and replacing it all the way to the septic tank with solid plastic pipe.
Still have the same old trees in the same place right by the line and tank, but no more tree root problem, I still put the copper sulfate down the toilet once a year just in case!!!
-- Annie Miller in SE OH (email@example.com), February 03, 2002.