What You Need to Know About Outdoor Plumbing Clogs
While it is more common for homeowners to deal with indoor plumbing problems that involve clogs in their toilets, bathtubs, and sinks, it is not unheard of for similar plumbing issues to occur in a home’s outdoor plumbing fixtures. Sewer mains, landscape drains, and septic systems may reside outdoors, but they are also prone to the same problems that haunt their indoor counterparts: clogs and blockages that slow down water flow and wreak havoc in a home’s plumbing system.
How To Know When You Have Underground Plumbing Blockages
It doesn’t take much sleuthing to figure out something is wrong with a home’s plumbing. Most homeowners know instinctively that there is a problem with the pipes when their regular daily activities are disrupted by things that may seem like minor inconveniences, like a slow-to-drain sink or a faucet whose water flow just doesn’t seem quite right. Still, they are indicators of a bigger problem with the plumbing. Here are some of the most common signs that a home’s pipes are clogged:
- Changing water pressure - noticeable changes in the flow of water from outdoor fixtures may indicate a leak in the pipes or a blockage causing the water flow to slow down.
- Wet spots - if water starts pooling in certain areas outside the house without any obvious source, this could mean that the water lines aren’t working properly and may need to be inspected.
- Lawn oddities - lush, green grass patches, unusual flooding, or foul odors coming from irrigation or drain openings- indicate an external pipe blockage.
- Extremely high water bills - if the water bill starts to trend upward, then it is highly likely that there is a leak in the pipes or a significant clog that needs to be addressed. Clogs that aren’t addressed and are allowed to build up over time can cause stress on the pipes leading to breakage and leaks that cause bills to spike.
How Clogs Form on Outdoor Plumbing
Most clogs result from improper drain use and indiscriminate waste disposal through sinks and toilets. Fat, oil, and grease thrown into the kitchen sink, materials other than human waste and toilet paper that get flushed down the toilet, or using too many chemical cleaning solutions to get rid of pipe clogs are often the culprits. Although these problems usually occur inside the home, they also affect outdoor plumbing since they are connected.
Outdoors, tree roots can invade the plumbing system as they grow through the ground, causing pipes to burst or break. Landscape drains can also become blocked with leaves and silt washing down the lines.
Getting Rid of Stubborn Clogs on Underground Plumbing
As with most things in life, prevention is always better than a cure, and thankfully it is not too difficult to prevent outdoor plumbing clogs. Practicing correct waste disposal is foremost, as is installing screens in outdoor drains to keep out big debris such as leaves. It is also crucial to add what is called a sump, which is a low spot in a drain system that is meant to catch soil and debris. Regularly maintaining pipes and drains is also important to prevent underground plumbing clogs.
However, if a home’s outdoor pipes are beyond the point of prevention, clearing tough clogs is still possible through professional intervention. A trusted plumbing professional should be able to get rid of any blockages through processes such as drain snaking or hydro jetting. The former involves using a snake - a long, flexible metal cable with a small uncoiled spring at the end that is meant to hook onto a clog and remove it from the pipe. The latter uses highly pressurized water to clear out even the most stubborn clogs.
About All Clear Plumbing
All Clear Plumbing is a reliable plumbing, heating, sewer, and drain services provider in the counties of Essex, Passaic, Hudson, and Bergen in NJ. This family-owned and operated business takes pride in its prompt, professional service, flat rate pricing, and 24/7 emergency availability. Their licensed and insured technicians can fix any plumbing issue without leaving any mess behind. Call them today for all plumbing services in Bellevue, NJ.