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Factors That Can Lead to Home Plumbing Problems & How to Remedy Them

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Your plumbing system continually works efficiently within the walls of your home and below ground to drain plumbing waste from your home. But as soon as your plumbing begins to have trouble due to clogs and slow draining, it can make you aware how much you took the system for granted. Failing plumbing and sewer drainage in your home can cause smelly back-up problems, overflowing drains, and mold and mildew growth. Here are two common causes of plumbing problems and more information on how you can prevent and repair them to restore you home to its proper balance.

Age-Related Deterioration

A number of older homes begin to have issues with their home plumbing and sewer pine because the pipe that was originally installed to drain sewage was made of an inferior material that would not last as long as it would need to. For example, Orangeburg is a common sewer pipe material that has age-related cracking, collapse, and other failures. Orangeburg pipe is made of a wood pulp combined with liquefied coal tar pitch to make it water resistant, and was used as a sewer pipe from the late 1800s until the 1970s. Unfortunately, this type of pipe fails as it becomes crushed under the weight of soil placed upon it during installation.

Clay pipe was also used for home sewer lines, which can begin to crack and collapse with age and the weight of soil. Cast iron sewer pipe causes a chemical reaction with raw sewage, deteriorating the interior of your line, which can cause sewer leakages and soil intrusion blockages.

If your home is an older home and was built during the time before PVC pipe in the 1970s, you should have your sewer line inspected by a plumbing professional if you are encountering problems with multiple drains in your home. They can complete a sewer inspection with a camera to discover the type of sewer line and the cause of the issues, then recommend a method to repair or replace the line. You may need to have the line replaced with a new pipe. This will require the old pipe to be excavated from the soil in your yard. Talk to your plumber to get an estimate for this replacement.

Plumbing Misuse

Another common cause of plumbing clogs is from placing items into drains and sinks that are not meant to be. This can be a common problem if your home has a kitchen sink disposal that you have been using for the wrong types of materials. You don't want to consider your disposal as a trash disposal for any type of food waste.

To prevent this type of clog, as you wash your dishes, scrape the dishes into the trash to remove large pieces of food, then rinse the remaining residue down the disposal. This helps minimize food clogging your pipes. Be sure you don't ever pour any grease or cooking fats into the drain. Grease will harden in the sewer pipe to coat the interior of the pipe and collect sink debris to form a clog. Instead, collect grease and oils in an empty food can, then dispose of it into the trash.

Clogs in your sink drains from a build-up of disposal food waste and grease can form a blockage, which you can clear with a at-home sewer snake or by hiring a professional plumber. A professional plumber can also use their camera to inspect and find a difficult clog to remedy it.

In the bathroom, don't flush into the toilet any cotton swabs, cotton balls, feminine hygiene products, baby wipes, and other similar products. Only flush sewer and septic system safe toilet paper when you use the toilet.

When a clog occurs in your toilet that a plunger won't clear, you can also try using a home plumbing snake to clear the blockage and restore flow of the drainage. If you don't have access to your own sewer snake, your plumbing professional can clear the line for you as well.