backyard with trees

The Problem with Trees: How They Affect Your Drainage

With drainage repair, working with plumbing experts is still the best decision. However, sometimes you have no other choice but to do it yourself. For instance, you might be worried about having someone else visit your home while the coronavirus pandemic is still on.

Fortunately, with underground drainage fittings available online, you can start projects right away. The next step is to identify the common problems that can cause you headaches. One of them is trees.

Why Trees Are a Problem?

A plumbing leak inside the house can be a straightforward issue. You might have a corroding or worn-out pipe, for example. A large object, from poop to a toy, might be stuck in the flushing space. It clogs the drain and forces the water to flow back up.

Sometimes it can be complicated. Any issue within the pipe network can be a source, but usually, the common reason is a significant blockage, such as the roots of trees.

Trees demand sunlight and water to survive. For the latter, it’s the job of the roots to find and maximize the available source. If they are growing near water pipes, they can invade the network.

Roots cannot dig themselves through pipes. But your network can encounter structural issues. If they’ve been around for a long time, they can experience wear and tear. The best pipes can handle intense water pressure, but they can also have their limits.

All the roots need is an opportunity, such as a tiny hole. Once a root gets inside, the abundance of water supply will allow it to grow and multiply. As they develop, they block the drain until the water cannot flow anymore.

Because water doesn’t have anywhere to go, the pressure buildup will force it to flow back to the source, such as the toilet. Otherwise, they can cause the pipe to burst. It will then lead to flooding or even significant damage to the sewage system of your home.

Dealing with Trees

If you have trees growing within or near your property, it’s a sign that you need to check your drainage even if you’re not having drainage issues like a clogged drain or backflow.

To do that efficiently, you can use a sewer camera. It is a set composed of a cable, a camera you can attach to the tip, and a monitor that provides a live feed. You find the sewer line, insert the tube, and slowly track the pipe for any root growth. If you encounter something that looks like a bunch of hair or strands, you are likely seeing the roots.

You can then assess the severity of the problem. Usually, it takes two to three years for the roots to grow at least twice the spread of the branches. If you see fewer roots, you might delay the replacement or repair of the pipes, especially if you’re not experiencing persistent leaks or backflow.

Otherwise, you proceed to the next step, which is the removal and replacement. This step-by-step guide will give you some ideas on how to do it.

Should You Let Your Council Know about It?

trees in neighborhood

The answer is more likely yes, especially if you’re sharing boundaries with your neighbors or live in an urban area. The work you need to do can disturb them or, worse, damage other people’s pipes.

If the trees don’t belong to your private property, you also need to inform the local council. If they’re growing on private land, the trees are their responsibility.

Changing underground drainage fittings yourself isn’t easy, but it can also be doable when you have the necessary skills and tools.

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