Blocked Sewer Drains and How to Unblock Them

What Is a Blocked Sewer Drain?
Blocked, damaged and clogged sewer drains or septic systems are some of the most common problems that cause toilets and other fixtures to stop or working properly. These problems can also cause flooding and hazardous spills that may be fatal for humans living in areas close to where the problems occurred. The main purpose of septic systems is to keep away or remove hazardous waste materials from buildings and guarantee that clean water is available to the people living in these places, free from pollution and waste particles.

If the problem is about your septic system, it is highly likely that waste water and waste materials come up to your floor drains. The water that has built up in your septic system caused by blockage or clogging will start to flow back to the lowest point like drains. It can even flow back up to your bathtub drains, shower drains, or toilets because these are the next lower points in your system.

Blockage or clogging of your septic systems are the most common problems encountered. Most of the time this is caused by flushing out the wrong items into the toilet. Hygiene and sanitary products are some of the most common items flushed down into the toilets. However, some of these products are made of cotton or are plastic based and cannot break down in the system, thus, creating a blockage or clogging the toilets. The safest item that breaks down in the system is only toilet paper. So, the next time you are using wet wipes and sanitary napkins, don’t make the mistake of flushing them down the toilet because they will definitely clog it.

Clogging and blockages become worst over time. Waste, water and toilet paper will no longer drain properly in the sewer drain once the problem is really worse. Each time you flush the toilet the pressure that is forced into the sewer drain can be forced back through the sewer drain and up through the toilet. It can also result in the flooding of the bathroom with hazardous waste and water which can be bad for the family’s health.

How to Unblock Sewer Drains?

The first step in unblocking sewer drains is to diagnose the problem. You have to inform your plumber about the things that you have flushed recently into the drains. Or, if your plumbing is prone to invasion of tree roots. You have to inform the plumber about these matters so that he will know exactly what to do in repairing the problem. Drain cameras might be used by your plumber to check the system more thoroughly to see if there are damaged pipes or joints. Be aware that drain cleaning equipment like power augers or high-pressure water jet cleaners may not be good for broken pipes and can cause more damage or destruction to expensive equipment.

The closer the clog is to the toilet or fixture where the blockage or clog is, the easier it is to clear it. Clogs like toilet paper and human waste can be dislodged easily with little effort. The serious blockage caused by plastics or cotton-based products may cause clogging further up the sewer drain. This may be up to where the drain is connected to the municipal sewer system. Your plumber should be informed about this, that way he can prepare the tools he needs to fix the problem.

To fix the blockage or clogging problem, the plumber may use some of these tools to clear the blockage or clogs:
Plumbing snakes or Electric power augers are made of steel cable with a bladed tip fitted to an electric motor, fed into the sewer drain that when it encounters a blockage it will clear it by using blades to shred the clog. Power augers can have various heads sized to fit different pipe sizes. The process of using these tool takes time in removing the clog. High-pressure water jetters are made of a large length of hose with a high-pressure tip that has a forward and rear facing nozzles. The hose is propelled by the rear-facing nozzles through the sewer drain and cleans the pipes on its way. Once it reaches a blockage, a blast of high-pressure water is made by the forward facing nozzle to destroy the clog. These tools are highly recommended by plumbers because they are less likely to get caught on jagged edges and can cause little damage to pipes. It can also be used with a drain camera for a better repair.

There are other special tools used for clearing sewer drains. However, your local plumber can use any of these to get the job done. For more serious blockage in your sewer drains, plumbers might need to clear the drain to the point where it connects to the sewer system or septic tank. It is a long process and might need several tools to unclog and clear the blockage. Clean the sewer drain and prevent waste from clogging it.

Clean the Front Cleanout

The front cleanout point is the place where your home or business’s plumbing system connects to the municipal system. Water jetter or power augers can clear anything that caused the blockage. You should show the point to your plumber if you know where it is or they could locate it themselves if you don’t know where it is.

Final Steps in Unblocking a Sewer Drain

Your plumber will run water through the sewer system to see if the pipes are clear and clean. This can be done through your toilet, bathtub or floor drain which directs the water into the sewer. Final inspections will also be made through a camera and ensure that the drain is clear and the pipes are in good condition.
If you have blocked drain problems, call your professional plumber right away to prevent the problem from getting worse. Call or write to us and we’ll solve your plumbing problems for you.