Maintaining an efficient sewer system is critical to any property. Yet, one common challenge homeowners and property managers encounter is tree roots infiltrating their sewer lines, often causing ...
Maintaining an efficient sewer system is critical to any property. Yet, one common challenge homeowners and property managers encounter is tree roots infiltrating their sewer lines, often causing blockages requiring costly repairs. Metro Septic Pumping examines why tree roots find their way into sewer lines, providing insight into why this phenomenon arises. Knowing the causes is the first step to preventing expensive septic tank repair.
Trees are living organisms with an amazing ability to locate necessary resources, like water and nutrients, to sustain their own growth. Trees extend their roots as they mature to seek out these vital components - and unfortunately, sewer lines provide an ideal source of these elements - especially since moisture-laden organic material attracts roots looking for sustenance.
A key factor driving tree roots toward sewer lines is moisture. Sewer lines contain wastewater that contains moisture that seeps through cracks or joints in pipes; trees with highly sensitive root systems can detect even trace amounts of moisture in their surrounding soil and move towards it instinctively in search of sustenance - and often end up infiltrating sewer lines, providing concentrated sources of freshwater for survival.
Beyond moisture, sewer lines emit certain chemical compounds that attract tree roots. These include organic matter and nutrients emitted by human waste and decomposition processes; when released into the environment, they provide an additional food source that tree roots actively seek. As such, tree roots tend to grow toward sewer lines to access this nutrient-rich environment - adding another factor as to why their roots gravitate toward them.
Tree roots target sewer lines not only due to water and nutrients; they also take advantage of any structural vulnerabilities. Over time, sewer lines may develop small cracks, gaps, or loose joints, which allow water vapor and odors to escape and allow tree roots access. Furthermore, as roots expand, they exert pressure on the surrounding soil, which causes it to shift or crack further, leading to even further weakness in pipes, which allows further root intrusion, further compounding this issue.
One factor that could explain why tree roots gravitate toward sewer lines is warmth. Sewer lines buried deep underground are known to maintain an even temperature throughout the year, providing tree roots with an attractive environment in colder seasons or regions with lower soil temperatures. When looking for shelter in winter when surrounding soil temperature decreases significantly, sewer lines become attractive targets as an oasis.
Preventive measures must be implemented given the damage and inconvenience caused by tree roots infiltrating sewer lines. Regular inspection, maintenance, and septic tank pumping can identify structural vulnerabilities early before they become major issues; root cutting using mechanical or chemical treatments can temporarily alleviate root intrusion problems; however, these solutions often are only short-term fixes due to tree roots' ability to regrow quickly.
Root barriers or shields provide an effective long-term solution, a physical deterrent against tree roots infiltrating pipes. Furthermore, selecting tree species with noninvasive root systems and planting them at a safe distance from sewer lines can significantly lessen the risk of root intrusion.
Regular tree maintenance is important in preventing root intrusion into sewer lines. Trimming or removing trees with high risks of root growth toward sewer lines may reduce the potential for damage. Consulting an arborist or professional tree service for guidance and insight on proper tree care and maintenance can offer invaluable advice.
A professional septic company should always tackle root intrusion. Plumbers or sewer line specialists possess the experience, tools, and know-how necessary to accurately assess the extent of the issue and propose the most appropriate course of action. We conduct inspections, root cutting or removal procedures, repair damaged sewer pipes as needed, and conduct thorough repairs/replacements.
Educating homeowners and property managers about the risks posed by tree roots to sewer lines is crucial, especially when they have a septic tank installation. Raising awareness about proper tree planting and maintenance practices is one way to prevent root intrusion issues, and regularly inspecting sewer lines for early detection could prevent substantial root damage to save both money and time in repairs.