It is the biggest drain in your home, so it is not surprising that it can be susceptible to many problems. It is strongly recommended that you hire a professional plumber if you have a serious plumbing problem. These are the most common issues:

  • Tree roots. Tree roots can infiltrate your sewer lines and cause damage. This is more common in older homes.
  • Broken, cracked, misaligned or collapsed pipes. Frosty ground or shifting soil may cause pipes to break, crack, or become misaligned. This can weaken the structure and sewage pipes.
  • Blockage. Blockage is caused by a buildup of grease, or other objects that restrict water flow through the sewage pipes. This can lead to water backing up from the drains or toilet plumbing.
  • Pipe corrosion and deterioration. Pipe deterioration can occur in older pipes and pipes made from other materials than PVC piping. This can lead to pipe collapses and water flow restrictions.
  • Bellied pipe. A section of the pipe that has fallen into the ground creates an area where waste can converge.
  • Leaking joints. Water can easily leak into the area around the pipe if the seals between pipes are cracked.


There are many things that could cause a sewer line to fail. You should schedule an inspection of your septic tank every three to five year to prevent any future problems. To ensure that your septic system is in good condition, make sure you hire a licensed and insured plumber.

Regular maintenance and proper drainage are the best ways to prevent problems. These are some tips to keep your sewer lines clear.

  • Your toilet should not be used as a trash can. Common causes of clogging are feminine hygiene products, napkins, diapers and paper towels.
  • Use your garbage disposal wisely. Do not dump large amounts of food particles into your garbage disposal. To minimize the amount of food particles that may be lodged in your sewer line, dispose of the rest in the garbage basket.
  • Do not pour grease down the drain. Although liquids can pass easily through your drains, grease and fat can build up in your plumbing and cause clogs.
  • Only use the drain cleaner on pipes that are designated. Be cautious when using drain cleaners. Commercial drain cleaners are safe for use in bathrooms and kitchens. However, toilets can be damaged by the wrong type of cleaner. These problems can be avoided by carefully reading labels before using drain cleaners.


Plumbing is a speciality field. For corrective and preventive work on home sewer problems, it is recommended to only use highly skilled, licensed, and insured sewer contractors.