How Trees Break Your Sewer

Have you ever noticed that your sewer has been backed up for a few days? Maybe it’s been weeks, maybe even months. Maybe you’ve been wondering why it happens so often and what could be done to prevent it.

Maybe the problem isn’t in the sewer after all. Maybe it’s your trees!

When you think about it, the idea of a tree breaking your sewer is pretty absurd. It almost sounds like something from a cartoon, where a giant tree suddenly comes crashing down and lands on top of your house. But as it turns out, it’s not that rare for trees to cause problems with your sewer—and it can happen in various ways.

Trees can cause many problems with your sewer line, especially if they’re close enough to touch or otherwise contact it. 

In all seriousness, though, if you’ve ever had this happen to you—or if you live near trees and know they can be dangerous—it’s essential to know what major signs to look out for so that you can prevent this kind of thing from happening again. Wondering how you will do it on your own? 

Well, don’t worry.

In this article, Sewer Repair & Replacement experts in Salt Lake City will be talking about how trees can damage your sewer. We’ll also talk about what to do if a tree breaks your sewer and how to clean up after it happens.

Let’s explore.

Do Trees Damage Sewer Lines?

The short answer is: yes, trees can damage sewer lines. The longer answer is: it depends on the type of tree, how big it is, and where it’s located.

It’s important to note that just because a tree is large enough to damage your sewer line doesn’t mean it will. For example, if there’s a small tree on your property and it happens to be near your sewer line, there’s not much cause for concern. But if you have a large tree with roots that are close enough to your sewer line that they could potentially cause damage, then you may want to take action!

What Kind Of Trees Can Cause Damage To Sewer Lines?

Certain types of trees are known to cause damage to sewer lines due to their root systems. These trees typically have aggressive and invasive root systems that seek out sources of moisture, including sewer pipes. Some common tree species that can cause damage to sewer lines include:

  • The Willow Tree: This tree tends to spread out its roots over time, which can result in cracks or holes in the sewer pipes.
  • The Cedar Tree: Cedar trees can cause blockages due to the needles from the leaves that collect on top of the roots, causing them to grow faster than normal and eventually splitting apart the sewer pipe.
  • The Maple Tree: This type of tree produces sugar in its sap that attracts ants, which then crawl into your drain pipes and build nests there, causing a clog!
  • The Oak Tree: Oak trees have deep taproots that grow straight down into the ground and create large root systems that spread out under your yard’s surface. This can also cause cracks in pipe walls when they push against them as they grow. If you have an oak tree on your property, we recommend removing it before it causes structural damage to your home’s foundation!
  • Poplar Trees: They are notorious for sending large amounts of roots straight down into your sewer pipes, creating damage that can cost thousands to repair. 
  • Fig Trees: They are less common, but they’re no less destructive: they send their roots in all directions, creating cracks and holes in your sewer pipes that can result in clogs, backups, and overflows.

What Are The Signs Of Tree Root Damage On Pipes?

When it comes to tree root damage on pipes, it’s not just a matter of what you see—it’s what you don’t see.

Tree roots are sneaky, and they can do some serious damage to your pipes if you’re not careful. Here are a few signs that tree roots are wreaking havoc on your pipes:

Sign #1: Slow Draining or Blockages

The first sign of tree root sewer damage is a slow drain or blockage. If you notice your pipes taking longer than usual to drain, or if they’re not draining at all, it can be an indication that tree roots are causing damage to the pipe.

Sign #2: Water Leaks From Pipes

If you have a water leak in your home, it could be caused by tree root sewer damage. If water starts dripping from the ceiling or running up through the walls of your house, this can be another indication that something is really wrong with your plumbing system.

Sign #3: Gurgling Noises

Another sign of tree root damage on pipes is gurgling noises coming from the pipes themselves. This can happen when roots have grown into the pipe and clog it up, making it difficult for water to flow through properly.

Sign #4: Sudden Bursting of Water Pipes

The sudden bursting of water pipes can happen due to cracks caused by tree roots expanding as they grow over time inside the pipe itself where there’s no room for expansion outwardly towards open space until suddenly one day there’s just too much pressure so it bursts open like an overstuffed piñata full of candy!

Sign #5: Foul Odors

You may notice a foul odor coming from your bathroom sink or bathtub faucet when you turn it on. This is because tree roots can cause leaks in the pipes near the water meter and septic tank. If you notice this odor, be sure to call an expert for sewer line inspection.

Sign #6: Soggy Patches In The Yard

Tree roots can push through the ground and create holes under your sidewalk, driveway, or other areas. This causes the ground above them to become soft and mushy—and sometimes even crack open! If you notice soggy patches around these areas, call a sewer line repair expert right away to help determine what’s causing them so that professionals can repair pipes before any severe damage occurs!

Sign #7: Sinkholes or Depressions

This is probably the most obvious sign of tree root sewer line damage. If you see a depression in your yard, it could be caused by a pipe collapse. When trees grow up into the ground near your pipes, their roots can push up and cause the surrounding earth to cave in. This is especially common in areas where there is heavy rainfall—like a rainforest!

Sign #8: Cracked or Broken Pipes

If you notice cracks in your plumbing or broken pipes, this could also be caused by tree roots growing close to them. Tree roots need water to survive, so when they’re trying to get access to that water source, they’ll do whatever it takes—even if it means breaking through concrete and other barriers to get what they need!

4 Types Of Pipes Susceptible To Tree Root Intrusion

We’ve all been there: you’re trying to find the right pipe for your home’s plumbing system, and you just can’t decide between galvanized steel or copper. Do you go with the tried-and-true or take a chance on something new?

We’re here to help! Tree root intrusion can be a real pain for homeowners. But, we’re going to tell you about some types of pipes that are susceptible to tree root intrusion. 


This is one of the most popular choices in residential plumbing systems, but it does have its downsides. While copper is great for resisting corrosion and oxidation, it can be damaged by tree roots that grow into it from outside sources—like your backyard! If this happens, the roots will slowly erode at the pipe until nothing is left but an empty hole. You’ll never see this coming; in many cases, it takes years before there are any signs of trouble.

PVC/Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) Pipes

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes are one of the most common types of piping utilized in homes today. They’re durable, inexpensive, and easy to work with. But can tree roots damage PVC sewer pipes? Yes, PVC pipes are also susceptible to tree root intrusion because they’re flexible and can be easily damaged by roots or tree trunks.

Ductile Iron Pipes

These pipes are made from a mixture of steel and iron that is then melted down and poured into molds to create the correct shape for your pipe. The resulting product is more flexible than regular steel and less likely to crack under pressure from tree root intrusion than cast iron or cement-lined pipes.

Cast Iron Pipes

These pipes were originally designed for use in sewer damage restoration and other places where temperatures fluctuated between extremely hot and cold temperatures very frequently—but today, most people use them as replacements for copper or plastic pipes because they’re easier to install (and cost less). However, because they’re made out of cast iron instead of ductile iron or steel, they’re much more susceptible to damage from tree root intrusion.

How Can Tree Roots Affect Your Sewer Lines?

Tree roots are the bane of a homeowner’s existence. They can cause damage to your home’s foundation, block your sewer and drain lines, and even crack your driveway. So how do they get there?

If you have trees on or near your property, there’s a good chance they’re sending their roots into your pipes. And when those roots grow and get old enough, they can actually block the flow of water and cause damage to your pipes.

Here’s how tree roots can affect your sewer lines:

Pipe Damage 

Roots can also cause damage to your pipes over time as they grow around them or through them. This can lead to leaks and cracks in the pipe that will allow water and other contaminants into your home’s foundation or basement, which could further damage your home’s structure (such as mold).

Blockages and Clogs

As tree roots seek out sources of moisture, they can infiltrate sewer pipes through small cracks, loose joints, or pipe openings. Once inside, the roots can grow and expand, eventually causing blockages and clogs. This restricts wastewater flow and can lead to backups and overflows within the plumbing system.

Reduced Pipe Capacity 

Tree roots can cause blockages in sewer lines, making it harder for wastewater to flow through the pipe. This reduces the pipe capacity and increases the risk of backups and overflows into your home or business.

Leaks and Water Infiltration

Tree roots can also cause leaks in your sewer lines as they expand over time. They can also grow so thickly around the outside of a pipe that water will infiltrate it, creating an unsafe situation where feces could be present in your water supply.

System Backup and Malfunction

Tree roots grow into the sewer system and cause blockages, which leads to clogs and backups in your pipes. These backups may prevent wastewater from draining out of the home, causing flooding on the inside of your property.

How To Clear Roots from Drain Lines?

Clearing roots from your plumbing system can be a nightmare. But it doesn’t have to be! Here are some ways to get rid of those pesky roots.

Trenchless Lining

This method involves running a pipe along the outside of your house and then inserting it into your existing pipes through a small hole in the wall. The pipe is then covered with a special material that keeps roots from growing through it.

Trenchless Bursting

This method involves drilling small holes into your existing pipes and then inserting a new pipe into them. The old pipes are then blasted open with high-pressure water so that the new ones can be inserted without having to dig up any part of your yard.

Hydrojetting/Water Jetting

Hydrojetting/water jetting is another effective way of removing roots from drain lines without having to dig up your entire yard! This method uses high-pressure jets of water to remove debris from clogs in your plumbing system—and, best of all? You won’t need any heavy equipment or machines at all!

Mechanical Augering

This method involves using a machine that’s similar to an auger or drill bit. The machine is inserted into the drain line and turns to loosen up clogs and break up debris so they can flow freely again. It’s an effective solution for most small-scale problems. However, it might not be adequate if you have a larger issue on your hands.

Chemical Root Killers

Another way to remove the roots from your drain lines is using chemical root killers. These chemicals are designed in such a way that they can penetrate through the soil and kill any plant life underneath it. However, you should be careful while using these chemicals because they may also damage other things around your house!

Excavation and Pipe Replacement

This is the most expensive option but also the most thorough. If your house is built on a crawlspace or basement, then it’s possible to dig up the pipes that run through those spaces, remove any roots that have grown into them, and replace them with new pipes. This will clear out all your tree root drains from top to bottom.

8 Pro Tips in Maintaining Your Sewer

The truth is, the sewer is a tricky beast to tame. It’s like your personal version of Jumanji—you never know what can happen when you open it.

But don’t worry! We’ve got some pro tips for keeping your sewer looking and functioning at its best.

Regular Inspections

It’s important to know what’s going on in your sewer system, so it’s important to make sure that you’re getting regular inspections from a professional sewer line repair expert in Salt Lake City. You can’t just trust that it will be fine—you need someone who can tell you if there are any issues and help you fix them before they become major problems.

Proper Disposal Practices

You should always dispose of things properly! This means you shouldn’t flush anything down the toilet except for human waste and toilet paper (even then, only when necessary). You should also make sure that you’re disposing of chemicals properly, especially those with hazardous properties like bleach or cleaning solutions.

Root Management

It’s hard to see, but it’s also hard to miss. Root management is the bane of your life if you’re a sewer. You can’t see them, but they’re there and causing major problems. Your sewer line has plenty of cracks and holes that allow roots to enter—and then once they’re in, they won’t let go! Roots can cause blockages and even rupture your pipes completely. Here are some tips for getting rid of those pesky roots:

Root barriers are great for preventing roots from entering your pipes in the first place. These barriers are installed around the perimeter of your property so that no roots can get through them—this stops root penetration before it starts!

Chemical Treatments

You may need to add chemicals to your septic system if it has become overloaded with solids (such as grease or paper products) or liquids (such as urine or water). These chemicals help break down these items so microorganisms can digest them in your tank. 

Proper Ventilation

Another step in maintaining your sewer is ensuring that it has proper ventilation. Most experts recommend installing a vent at least six inches above the drainpipe’s highest point. This will allow air to flow freely through the system, helping prevent clogs and odors.

Professional Maintenance

A professional plumber for sewer line repair and replacement can help ensure that your sewer is functioning properly and efficiently so that it doesn’t cause any problems down the line (like flooding or clogging). The pros know how to spot potential problems before they become big, so don’t hesitate to call them if you think something is wrong with your system.

Mindful Landscaping

So you’ve got a sewer line problem. You know, the one that you can’t quite figure out, and that’s starting to get really expensive. What can you do?

It’s time to get your landscape on! A few simple changes to your lawn and garden can help prevent problems with your sewer line. These include:

-Minimizing the number of plants that send roots into the ground below your lawn and plant beds by laying mulch around their base.

-Removing any large rocks or debris from your landscape so they don’t damage your pipes or other infrastructure when they shift over time.

-Use organic fertilizers instead of chemical fertilizers so there is less chance of runoff into your gutters or downspouts, which can clog up drains leading to problems in your plumbing system later on down the line if left untreated.

Prompt Repairs

Finally, the last tip in maintaining your sewer system is prompt trenchless sewer repair. It’s as simple as that. If there’s a problem with your sewer, you need to get it fixed immediately. The longer you wait to fix a problem, the more likely it is that you will end up with more major issues down the line. Prompt repairs are especially important if you notice any signs of leaks or blockages in your pipes or drains. These types of problems can cause serious damage to your property and pose a health risk for anyone who uses them regularly (like children). If you notice any signs of leaks or blockages, call a professional sewer repair plumber immediately!

Need Help? Call Mr. Expert Plumbing For All Sewer Issues!

It seems like every time you turn around, there’s another sewer problem that needs to be fixed. You may have thought that a plumber would be your best bet to take care of these issues, but what if we told you there was another way? What if there was a company that could fix all of your sewer problems—for good?

That’s what Mr. Expert Plumbing offers: a permanent solution to all of your plumbing and sewer issues! We’re the experts in repairing and installing new sewers—and we can help with any problem, no matter how small or large it is! We’ve been providing trusted, reliable sewer services for over 10 years.

We specialize in all kinds of sewer services, including:

– Video Sewer Inspections in Salt Lake City

– BIO-CLEAN and ROOTX Drain Conditioning

– Sewer cleaning

– Sewer pipe repair

– Sewer pipe replacement

– Hydro jetting services for clogged drains

– Sump pump installation and repair

– Leak detection services

– Full-service plumbing repairs

– 24*7 emergency plumbing service

– Resident and commercial plumbing service

We know that when you call us, you’re not just calling a plumber—you’re calling an expert who cares about your resident and wants to protect it from the severe dangers of clogged pipes and faulty drainage systems.

Our plumbers are licensed, bonded, and insured and are here to assist you with any sewer problem with your plumbing system. Whether it’s a simple clog, a major leak, or tree root damaging sewer lines, we have the required expertise and decades of experience to make sure that your pipes are fully functional again as soon as possible. We also offer 24/7 emergency services, so if something happens at 3 AM on a Sunday night (like when our toilet overflowed), we’ll be right at your location to take care of everything.

And the best part is that we can do it without breaking the bank.

If you have a problem with your sewer system and need help with Sewer Repair Services in Salt Lake City, call us today at (801) 560-8207! We will schedule an appointment at a time that is convenient for you, so don’t wait—get in touch today!

Schedule Service Now!

    es_MXEspañol de México
    Scroll to Top