What Causes Sewer Line Clogs

There can be all kinds of reasons for a sewer line clog, but the most common causes include deposits or build-ups of grease, oil, hair, and food waste flushed down the drain, foreign objects that get flushed down the toilet or drain, tree roots, and a collapsed sewer line.  In most cases, the clog is caused by two or more of these factors.  The good news is that no matter what the cause, your sewer-septic professional is an expert at clearing clogged sewer lines and can diagnose the problem and provide you with a cost effective solution that will get your sewer line flowing freely again.

Even if you don’t flush pure grease and oil down the drain, food waste and even human waste contains oils that adhere to the walls of your sewer line. Over time, the greasy build up accumulates other material such as hair, coffee grounds, food particles, egg shells, and other material and builds up inside the pipe.  Eventually, it blocks the pipe and causes a clog.

Foreign objects such a child’s toy or a wash cloth can also get stuck in the greasy deposits and begin to accumulate other material such as toilet paper and hair.  A clog will quickly form behind a foreign object lodged in your sewer pipe.

Tree roots are attracted to the moisture inside the sewer pipe and will infiltrate any cracks or joints in a sewer line, no matter how small.  The roots will then grow, expanding the crack and allowing more roots to enter.  Eventually, the roots will form a mat of roots inside the pipe that quickly accumulates oil, grease, hair, paper, and all sorts of other material and forms a tough clog.

Finally, your sewer line can become clogged if it fully or partially collapses.  This is a common problem with older cast iron or Orangeburg sewer lines.  These types of clogs cannot be cleared.  Instead, you will need a sewer line replacement or repair.

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