A sewage backup is one of the most frustrating disasters that can happen inside your home. The disgusting smell, mess, and raw sewage overflow can be a health hazard as well. It can be a real problem if not addressed immediately. This article will explain the most common causes of sewage backup as well as the steps on how to avoid this disaster.
What to Deal With
Sewage systems consist of wastewaters from toilets, tubs, sinks, showers, dishwashers, and even washing machines. Sewage backup usually occurs when private sewer systems enter your property. This sewer typically forms thick, black water that contains untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes that can cause illnesses if ingested or contaminated the water supply. Moreover, sewage backup lines are more appropriate if water damage restoration companies take over the cleaning process.
Most Common Causes of Sewage Backup
The sewer backup is a nightmare for many homeowners because it is a complex disaster. The following are one of the most common causes of sewage system backup.
1. Clogged drains
Sewer backups when your home’s pipelines or main sewer lines are clogged. For example, if a sewage backup occurs in the bathroom, the drain lines connected to it will obstruct. Drains clogged due to hairs, accumulated cooking oil, and grease down the drain, or when other solid materials like toilet paper and feminine products are flushed down the toilet.
The blockage usually starts with tree roots. When tree roots start to grow, they tend to intertwine with your drain lines. Furthermore, root shrubs can also cause cracks or create holes in the sewer pipe and can even wrap themselves around it.
3. Damaged Sewer Lines
Water damage issues start when there is damage to sewer lines. Pipes made of cast iron and clay piping are often found in older homes and are inadvisable for long-term use. Also, when trees and shrub roots begin to puncture the drain lines, old sewage systems can deteriorate, resulting in sewage flooding or toilet overflow.
4. Heavy Rainfall
Sometimes, a disaster starts naturally. Heavy rain can overflow the city sewer lines, which leads to sewer backup. If the public sewage system cannot handle the excess rainwater, it can flow to all linked pipelines, putting your home at risk of sewage overflow.
Tips to Prevent Sewage Backup
Experiencing sewer line backup is a very frustrating event. Try these simple tips to avoid sewage system overflow as well as property damage.
1. Never pour cooking oil, fats, and grease down the drain.
Cooking oil or grease into a water line is never a good idea. These liquids tend to harden inside your pipes and eventually clog the drain. Even if you use hot water as a remedy, once it cools, the oil and grease will start to harden again. To properly dispose of the grease and oil, put it in a hot-resistance container and throw it in the trash once it cools off.
2. Dispose of paper and feminine products properly.
Flushing feminine products, facial tissue, diapers, medicines, q-tips, or any paper solid products down the toilet can clog the sewer lines. The only thing that can flush down the toilet is human waste, as they can disintegrate quickly and only flow into the pipeline.
3. Cut tree roots and replace your line with plastic pipes.
If you’re only using cast iron and clay piping for sewer lines, replace them with a plastic pipe to prevent corrosion and strengthen the pipeline. On the other hand, cut the tree roots around your house to avoid disaster and water damage.
4. Install a backwater prevention valve.
Try installing a backwater valve to prevent outbound water through a private drainpipe back flowing into your home. It has a flap that allows the water to exit your home but closes once it detects water. Ask a professional plumber to install it for you, but keep in mind that it only avoids the backflow water from the main sewer line but not on your service line. You may also consider installing a sump pump in your basement.
5. Sewage pump maintenance.
Make sure to place your sump pump in a steady flat brick, not on debris like silt or gravel, to prevent the device from sucking up debris into the pump that leads to ruining the motor. Also, make sure that the sump basin has a fabric filter to stop dirt from entering the device. Also, make sure there aren’t any unauthorized plumbing connections to your city sewer line, such as the French drains, sump pump, and other flood control systems to prevent any possible problem in your home or business.
What to Do in Case of Sewage Backup
- Immediately evacuate the flooded area. Contaminated water is a health hazard and may cause difficulty in breathing.
- Shut off the electrical power in the flooded area. Keep in mind that electrical wires and appliances might come in contact with standing water, so don’t touch any of it.
- Ensure to wear protective equipment like masks, glasses, gloves, and rubber boots before walking through the sewage water.
- Immediately shut off your main water line to stop the flooding and contact your insurance company to file a claim.
- Contact your local public work department to help with the investigation of the sewer system issue.
- Don’t turn on the water until the plumber checks the sewer line.
- Try opening the windows and doors to let the fresh air in and ventilate the area.
- Pour some chlorine bleach solution into standing water to disinfect the area.
- Call professional cleaning service for sewer backup cleaning like Superior Restoration.
Homeowners Insurance Coverage
Your homeowner’s insurance policy can not cover all sewage backup occurrences. It only covers sewer line property damage that is unexpected or something sudden. However, if the damage is due to chronic issues, more likely you will have to pay for the repair costs. You can have a professional water damage restoration company clean up the sewer line backup, mitigate the area and prevent mold when you file a claim.
Need help with cleaning and restoration, call a professional
Understanding the causes of a sewage backup can help you stay on top of a disaster. However, if accidents occur and you experienced sewer backup, please don’t hesitate to contact professionals at Superior Restoration. We use high-quality equipment and advanced methods that can efficiently restore your home to its pre-loss condition. Call our local office, Water Damage Costa Mesa, to know more about our restoration services.