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Common Causes of Sewer Line Blockage

It’s the dreaded “gulping” sound emanating from your drains.  It’s your sink unkindly “returning” the items you’ve rinsed down it.  It’s everything you’ve flushed down the toilet coming back to haunt you.  A sewer blockage is every homeowner’s worst nightmare and once it happens, the only recourse is to contact the London, Ontario plumbing contractors at BEST Plumbing and Drainage.  We have the best drainage contractors in London, Ontario to diagnose your most challenging sewage problems.

Public or Private

There are two types of sewer blockages:

  • Blockages in the main sewer line
  • Blockages in the private line that goes from your home to the main line

If other people in your area complain of sewer backup, then the cause is public and it is up to the city to take care of the issue.  If the sewage backs up through a single sink, toilet, or other drain, the cause is somewhere in your sewage line and you’ll need to contact our London, Ontario plumbing contractors to help.

Foreign Objects

The most common reason for sewage backing up are items being flushed down the toilet.  Whether you don’t realize the consequences of doing so, or you don’t think it will happen to you, the truth is that sewer backup can happen at any time, regardless of how careful you are.  Common objects found are:

  • Baby diapers
  • Tampons
  • Cat litter
  • Oil & Grease

As with any backup issue, prevention is key.  Throw these items in the trash.  The stink they generate is nothing compared to the stink of a backed up toilet.  If the damage has already been done, our drainage contractors in London, Ontario can fix the problem.

Grease Lightning!

Just like lightning, a sewer backup from grease appears in a flash.  Grease backups happen when the grease and fats from your cooking get rinsed down the sink.  This clog typically happens about 25 feet into your sewage line, where the hot water that goes down the drains is cooled off.  With no hot water to cut through the grease, it starts to harden and build up over time and then before you know it, you have a backup problem that only our London, Ontario plumbing contractors can repair.

While most grease comes from things like bacon or cheeseburgers, things like mayonnaise, butter, and cooking oil are just as bad.  Also, putting things like coffee grinds, orange peels, and eggshells down the sink drain is just as bad – they love to coagulate with grease and contribute to the problem.

To make matters worse, this type of blockage can block over 10 feet of your pipe!  This problem is completely preventable by scraping anything oil-based into the trash, and being selective about what organic waste goes down your sink garbage disposal.

Nothing to Root For

Yes, tree roots can clog your sewers.  If the roots get big enough, they can get inside the pipes and form root balls that clog the lines.  You can get chemicals to remove the root, however they may also kill the plant.  You can prevent this problem by planting trees away from the sewer line, but once it has happened, our London, Ontario drainage contractors can go in and remove the root.

Deteriorated Pipes

Even pipes get old.  They rust, break open, and voila: sewer backup.  This is inevitable with all pipes, but you can prevent it from progressing to a blockage stage by getting in contact with our London, Ontario plumbing contractors to discuss what types of pipes work best for your home.

Unauthorized Plumbing Connections

Backyard drains, DIY sump pumps and other drainage systems that connect to the sanitary sewer are illegal and can clog your lines. Save yourself the money in potential fines and backup cleaning by getting in contact with our drainage contractors in London, Ontario to properly address and repair this issue right away.

Contact BEST Plumbing and Drainage whenever you have sewage problems. We are your drainage and plumbing specialists!


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At BEST Plumbing and Drainage Contractors, we feel it's important to help homeowners understand the role of the contractor and the various construction solutions available for each unique plumbing, wet basement repair and drainage issue. We are more than happy to consult with you and help navigate the process.

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