If you live in the Village of Floral Park, knowing how to deal with clogging caused by roots in pipes, can come in handy. The neighborhood of Floral Park in Queens, NYC is adjacent to the Village of Floral Park. Both the neighborhood and the village itself are located in Nassau County. Since 1993, this village has been designated a “Tree City.” Trees are considered valuable assets (as they should be) in the village. There are literally thousands of trees decorating the streets, public spaces, parks, and private properties in Floral Park. With more of the bigger trees inside private properties, their roots can frequently cause plumbing problems. Needless to say roots in pipes is an all too common issue when there are many trees in your neighborhood.
Tree roots in pipes, including your main sewer line does indeed happen
The resulting consequences of root infiltration are often worse than what you may have in mind. It is only natural that tree roots are looking for moisture and water. These two things that your sewer line almost constantly provide. A sewer line is never constructed from one long solid piece of pipe. It consists of a number of pipes assembled together. The type of joints vary depending on the pipe material. The assembly may leave some gaps through which tree roots can easily enter. This particularly true of clay vitrified pipes.
Roots and time are the enemies of your house sewer
Over time gaps, cracks, or leaking joints can also develop or worsen in your drain piping system. This particularly true if your pipe is made from clay, as most old sewers are. Once the roots get inside, and find what they are looking for, they multiply and expand. Eventually they occupy as much space as necessary to provide moisture and nutrients for all parts of the tree above the ground. Over time, the roots will completely block your sewer line, and you then have a serious plumbing issue.
Who is responsible for pipe damage from roots?
Homeowners are at least responsible for the part of plumbing installed or buried in their own properties. In most jurisdictions they are responsible for the entire run to the public sewer connection. The portion of sewer line installed in your property is called the lateral pipe. If you have big trees in your yard, tree root infiltration is a real possibility. Assuming you don’t want to cut down the trees, you can minimize the risk of sewer line clogging by having the pipe checked regularly by a plumber or sewer line specialist. HD sewer camera inspections are helpful, as are annual cleanings.
Diagnosing the problem of roots in pipes
There is no way to know if clogging in your sewer line is caused by tree roots or other problems. Taking a closer look at the inside of the pipe is typically required. Professional plumbers use a sewer camera run along the length of the pipe to see what the real culprits are. The camera has its own lighting and it can send a video feed, or images, to a screen located above ground. If the problem is indeed caused by tree roots, it is now easy to pinpoint the exact spot that needs repair and how to do it. A sewer camera eliminates guess work, and helps determine the best method to address the issue.
Removing roots in pipes: temporary vs permanent solutions
Water jetting and extensive cleaning can sometimes solve the issue for long periods of time. However, often the most effective method to get rid of the problem is to replace the portion of the pipe infiltrated by tree roots. Once roots get inside the sewer line, the pipe already has a defect of some sort. Even if you cut out the roots clean, there are still some holes, cracks, or gaps through which roots can enter again in the future. Your question becomes how frequently and how costly is cleaning needed, vs. a long term solution. To learn more about prevention vs. a cure read Tree Roots in Sewer Lines: Solutions and Advice.
Excavating and replacing your home sewer
Replacing your house sewer pipe requires excavation. A spot repair requires separating the damaged pipe from the rest of the sewer line. In some cases a complete sewer replacement must be done. It is more expensive repair, but new pipe (usually PVC or extra heavy cast iron) is much less prone to the same root problem. However, if the plumber determines that the pipe is not heavily damaged, it is possible to cut the roots using a sewer hydrojet. To prevent future root infiltration a chemical treatment can be used. The chemicals do not kill the tree, but they simply prevent roots from expanding into the soil contaminated with the solution. Additionally of note, root treatment only affects the roots it encounters. So again, no harm is to the tree itself.
Your sewer and drain expert is close at hand!
There are differences between plumbers, drain cleaners, and sewer line specialists. Not every plumber is knowledgeable enough to deal with sewer line issues and vice versa. The Balkan Drain Team excels at being both; the company hires only professional plumbers who can operate heavy-duty plumbing tools. We are able to deal with not only simple repairs, but also demanding work including sewer line repair or replacement. Balkan is likewise your local expert at dealing with roots in pipes. Our parent company, Balkan Sewer And Water Main Service, has been performing sewer repairs for over 65 years, and is minutes away. For expert advice, prompt service, and integrity above all else, contact the Balkan Drain Team.