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Common Causes of Sewer and Drain Problems in Residential Properties

Every homeowner dreads the day they encounter sewer repair or drain problems. They are inconvenient and disruptive and can also be messy and expensive to fix.  Understanding the common causes of these issues can help you take preventative measures and identify potential problems early on.

This blog will explore the most common causes of sewer and drain problems, along with tips for preventing them from plaguing your home.

Blockages: The Unsung Hero (or Villain) of Plumbing

Blockages are perhaps the most common cause of sewer and drain problems. Here are some of the usual suspects:

Hair: Hair is a notorious drain clogger, particularly in showers and bathtubs. While drain screens can help, regular cleaning is essential.

Grease and Fat: Oil, grease, and cooking fats solidify as they cool, clinging to the insides of pipes and causing blockages. Never pour grease down the drain; instead, let it solidify and dispose of it in the trash.

Foreign Objects: Unfortunately, sinks and toilets are often mistaken for trash cans. You should never flush or pour down items like feminine hygiene products, baby wipes, coffee grounds, and food scraps down the drain.

Soap Scum and Mineral Buildup: Over time, soap scum and mineral deposits can accumulate within pipes, contributing to slow drainage and eventual clogs.

Prevention Tips

  • Install drain screens in sinks and tubs to catch hair.
  • Wipe greasy pots and pans with paper towels before washing to remove excess grease.
  • Dispose of food scraps and other debris in the trash.
  • Use a drain snake or a natural cleaning solution like baking soda and vinegar to clear minor clogs. For persistent blockages, call a professional plumber.

Damaged Pipes: When Age Takes Its Toll

Sewer and drain pipes are built to last, but even the most durable materials can succumb to wear and tear over time. Factors like corrosion, shifting soil, and improper installation can all contribute to damaged pipes.  Here are some signs to watch out for:

Slow Drainage: This can be a sign of damaged pipes.

Gurgling Sounds: If you hear gurgling noises coming from your drains, it may indicate that trapped air in the system is due to a damaged pipe.

Leaks: Visible leaks under sinks, around toilets, or in your basement are a clear sign of damaged pipes and require immediate attention.

Prevention Tips

  • If your home has a history of damaged pipes, consider inspection and replacement if necessary.
  • Avoid using harsh chemical drain cleaners, as they can damage pipes over time.
  • Be mindful of what you flush or pour down the drain to avoid corrosion.

Improper Venting: A Silent but Important Player

Vents are an essential part of your plumbing system.  They allow air to circulate within the pipes, preventing pressure build-up and ensuring proper drainage.  Improper venting can lead to:

Slow Drainage: Without adequate venting, water can struggle to flow freely through the pipes.

Gurgling Sounds: As mentioned earlier, gurgling noises can indicate trapped air due to improper venting.

Siphonage: This occurs when water is sucked out of P-traps, allowing sewer gases to enter your home.

Prevention Tips

  • Ensure all plumbing fixtures have properly installed vents according to building codes.
  • If you suspect venting issues, consult a professional plumber to diagnose and fix the problem.

Take Control of Your Sewer Repairs and Drain Health Today!

Don’t wait for a plumbing emergency. Contact Your 1 Plumber to schedule a thorough inspection and preventative maintenance for your sewer and drainage system. Protect your property and save money in the long run with our plumbing services. Reach out to our plumbers in Germantown for more.

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