Do You Have a Sewer Line Problem?

A sewer line problem can start out small and grow into a gigantic headache. A damaged sewer line can lead to water damage and contamination of your property. Before you have to call for emergency repairs, pay close attention to the symptoms of a sewer line problem. If the symptoms begin to stack up, then reach out to a plumber before it’s too late.

1. Sewer Gas Odor

The first sign that something’s not right may not be something you see, but something you smell. If you detect a strong, sulfur or rotten egg odor, that could be a sign that something’s leaking. Contrary to some false old wives tales, you’re never supposed to be able to smell your septic tank or sewer line. However, your line could be cracked, allowing gas, and maybe more, escape.

2. Slow Draining

Use your favorite kind of at home clog remover to tackle slow drains at first. If your store bought remedies don’t work, it could be a sign that there’s something more fundamentally wrong with your line. Consistent, chronically slow drains could mean a clog, broken pump, or something else is disrupting the flow.

3. Suspiciously Thriving Lawn Spots

If your sewer line runs under your lawn, then you’re actually in luck. Surprisingly, your grass can help you identify sewer line problems. For instance, if one spot in your yard seems to be doing unusually well, that’s actually a bad sign. Leaking sewage acts as a fertilizer for plants. Unfortunately, it’s bad news for the rest of us.

4. Wall and Ceiling Mold

This one depends on the configuration of the pipes in your home. If your sewer lines run through your walls and ceilings close to the exterior walls, a break or leak could lead to mold growth. Mold thrives in a humid environment, so extra moisture leaking from pipes is great for it. This leads to the double problem of having to fix your sewer line AND your new mold problem. Luckily, we can help with mold removal!

5. Bubbles from Your Pipes

Sewer lines that let sewage out can also let air in. Bubbles that rise from your drains can be signs of a serious problem with your drains. The more there are, the worse the problem is.

6. Pipe Sounds

Banging, moaning, and gurgling in the pipes are additional signs that bubbles are getting in there. You might not have them all the way to your drains (or you may not notice them before you start looking), but these sounds all indicate that something’s not right. Tight, well-sealed pipes don’t make a lot of noise. Banging inside of your walls is also probably due to bubbles in your pipes.

7. Foundation Cracks

There are a lot of things that can lead to a crack in your foundation, but prolonged moisture exposure is one. A slow sewer leak might be all but noticeable until you start seeing cracks showing up in your foundation. This sign is one you can’t miss, and it’s typically expensive to fix. Keep your eye out for smaller clues, so you’re not blindsided with this one.

If you can catch signs of a problem with your sewer line early, you can nip issues in the bud. Keep your eyes, ears, and nose open for signs all around you. Tackle problems early, and you won’t have to place an emergency call when everything goes wrong.

Five Signs of Septic Tank Backup You Shouldn’t Ignore

Septic tank backup is more than unpleasant–it’s potentially dangerous. Human waste is never safe to interact with. Most severe septic tank issues can be avoided if you keep an eye out for common problems. Noticing the symptoms before a full-blown failure can save you a lot of money while keeping you and your family healthy.

1. Persistent Slow Drains

Slow drains in your house could be a sign of septic tank backup. In the interests of not jumping to conclusions, however, you should treat all slow drains as clogs at first. Take the appropriate measures to deal with a stuck drain. If boiling water or drain cleaner doesn’t fix the problem, however, the cause could be deeper. A full or poorly working septic system can’t drain your pipes effectively. Reach out to a professional if your at-home drain busting solutions don’t clear up a slow drain.

2. Sulfur Stench

This one sounds like it should be easy to notice. A sulfur stench coming from your property could be shocking… but it often goes unnoticed. If the smell builds up slowly, you may get used to it before it properly registers. If you have anyone over and they mention an odor, pay close attention. It might not be the neighbors!

3. Gurgling in the Pipes

Gurgling in pipes is never good. A septic tank backup can cause gurgling in the pipes when the tank is too full of solids. Instead of smoothly emptying your pipes, things have to hiccough through the waste. This leads to uneven draining and the introduction of air into the pipes, which causes gurgling. There are other causes of pipe gurgling, including tree roots breaking into the line. No matter what the cause, pipe gurgling is always a reason to call a professional.

4. Pooling Water

Every lawn gets puddles after a heavy rain. If you notice standing water on your property that you can’t account for, be cautious. When a septic tank fails, solids can force liquids up to the surface. This standing puddle could be hazardous waste material!

The flip side to this is an overly healthy lawn over your septic tank. Your septic tank shouldn’t impact your lawn health. Any extra moisture it leaks may green up your lawn, but it’s a flaw in your septic system. If every area of your lawn is going brown except the grass over your septic system, that’s a bad sign.

5. Sewage Backup

If you have sewage backup out of your drains, it’s time to call in a septic professional! Septic tank backup is toxic, and if you see any signs of dirty, grayish (or worse, dark and thick) water coming back out of your drain, call a plumber right away. Your septic tank has officially broken down! The longer you ignore this problem, the more serious it’s going to get!

Septic tank backup is a serious issue. If you have any of these signs of leaks, failures, or sewage backup, call a professional right away. You shouldn’t have to live with even “minor” symptoms of septic tank backup and the more serious signs could put your health at risk.