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Roots In Sewer Line

Tree root intrusion into sewer lines is an amazingly common problem. Tree roots naturally seek out the best source of moisture and are attracted to the limitless supply of wastewater found in sewer lines. Roots enter through any joints or gaps in between pipes. As they draw moisture from the sewer line, these roots not only multiply but expand – which over time leads to structural decay of the pipe and eventual collapse. Contrary to popular belief however, there are ways of permanently solving the problem without cutting down the tree.

Progression Of Root Intrusion


  • Stage 1: Early Intrusion
    Roots find their way into a joint in the sewer line, attracted by readily available moisture and start to grow into the sewer line.  At this stage, it can be hard to tell that there is an issue with the line.
  • Stage 2: Advanced Intrusion
    Nourished by the moisture, tree roots in sewer lines begin to multiply and grow thicker. Solid waste such as toilet paper is caught up in the root ball to further block the line leading to backups and clogs. If Stage 2 roots have progressed far enough, they cannot be cleared by mechanical rooters and will need advanced technology such as hydrojetting or a permanent repair solution.
  • Stage 3: Collapse/Structural Failure
    As tree root incursion continues to develop, the integrity of the pipe is weakened and eventually gives way to the weight of the soil above the line. Once the issue has progressed to structural failure, the only option to restore the line to a serviceable condition is through a permanent repair solution.

Root Repair Procedure & Options

Step 1: Get Your Sewer Flowing & Diagnose The Cause

Rooter & Drain Cleaning
Getting your waste water flowing again is the first priority. While rooter service is only a temporary fix aimed at the symptom - not the cause - our technicians will clear the line (if necessary) in order to get waste water flowing and prepare the line for video inspection.

Video Camera Inspection
After the line has been cleared so that it is visible, the next critical step is to visually inspect the length of the sewer line with a video camera inspection. With a visual inspection, technicians can then accurately diagnose the situation and come up with options that fit the issue.

Step 2: Get Multiple Options To Permanently Solve The Issue

Hydrojetting is a more permanent solution than rooter service. Instead of punching a hole through a blockage to get waste water flowing, hydrojet cleaning uses high pressure water jets to scour the inside of the line to remove grease buildup and even tree roots for a longer lasting effect.

Pipe Lining
Pipe lining is a process of creating a new seamless plastic pipe within the old pipe. The process can be applied to completely replace the line or for spot repairs of problem sections - all without the expense and damage of conventional trenching methods. Because the new pipe is seamless high grade epoxy, weak joints are eliminated leading to a permanent solution.

Pipe Bursting
Pipe Bursting - like pipe lining - is another method used to produce a permanent solution for sewer backups. A pipe bursting head is hydraulically pulled underground to simultaneously break apart the old pipe (even cast iron) while pulling into place a new seamless HDPE pipe. Pipe bursting sewer replacements come with a lifetime warranty.