As a homeowner, you expect your home plumbing system to function without flaw. Unfortunately, sewage backups are a fact of life. Live long enough in your home and you will eventually experience a sewage backup. The question begs: how, exactly, do sewage backups form? Below, our plumbers in Boca Raton answer this question in-depth.

Wayward Tree Roots are a Threat to Subterranean Pipes

Though it might be hard to believe, tree roots really can spur sewage system backups. If the land above the sewer line is void of trees, it is still possible for roots from a neighbor’s yard to wreak havoc down below. Tree roots have the potential to form holes, cause blockages and even grow directly into the pipes below the ground. In fact, some tree roots can even wrap around the line, causing damage that renders it useless.

An Abundance of Rain in a Short Period of Time

A heavy downpour has the potential to cause significant sewage back up in surprisingly little time. A significant downpour is likely to stress the city’s sewer lines. It is possible the public sewer system will not be able to handle this abundance of rain. If the water moves to the connected sewer lines, your home stands a greater chance of suffering a water backflow.


Main sewer lines have the potential to become clogged just like drain pipes. If the main sewer line is clogged, there will be sewage backups within your home. There is an important distinction to make between a problem with a single toilet, tub or sink and multiple toilets, tubs/sinks. If only one toilet is the issue, there is likely a clog in that specific drain. However, if there is a sewage backup every time a toilet is flushed, there is likely a nasty blockage within the main sewer line. Our plumbers in Boca Raton are here to prevent such sewer clogs through ongoing maintenance.

You can minimize the chances of a clog forming by using your drain in the proper manner. Never use the toilet as a trash can. In other words, do not flush tissues, paper towels, napkins or diapers down the toilet as they will cause clogs to form. Be careful when using the garbage disposal. If you dump large items into the garbage disposal, they will likely get caught within the sewer line. Finally, refrain from pouring grease or fat in the drain. Though grease is liquid when it enters the drain, it will harden within the plumbing system, forming a nasty clog.

Collapsed or Compromised Sewer Lines

Collapsed, cracked or otherwise-malfunctioning sewer lines are likely to cause sewer backups, especially in older homes. Old homes often feature clay or cast iron piping that is likely to break down across posterity, creating that many more sewer backups and plumbing issues as a whole.

Sump Pumps, Downspouts, and Gutters are a Threat to Your Sewer

Though few would guess it, sump pumps, downspouts, and gutters routed into sewers are a major threat. Though it is perfectly fine to connect such items to storm sewers, it is a mistake to connect them to the sanitary sewer line. There is a good chance an abundance of water will move through the sump pump and gutter when heavy downpours arrive. Sanitary sewers are meant to eliminate minimal wastewater from the home. If an abundance of storm water reaches this space, a backup and subsequent malfunction are that much more likely.

Collapsed Pipes

Aging pipes are that much more vulnerable to cracking and collapsing. It is now possible to replace aged pipes with trenchless technology to mitigate the disturbance to your property. Reach out to our plumbers in Boca Raton for more information about this minimally invasive approach to pipe replacement and repair.

Issues With the Municipal Sewer

Though you have a certain degree of control over some of the causes of sewer issues, you cannot do anything to ward off a municipal sewer backup. The bottom line is every type of sewer has the potential to deteriorate, become blocked and eventually clog in due time. It is possible the problem with your sewer line stems from issues with the municipal sewer.

In general, municipal clogs impact several houses at once yet there is no guarantee multiple homes will be affected. When in doubt, ask for assistance from our plumbers in Boca Raton to identify the true cause of your sewage backup and determine the best solution for repair.

Contact Erica’s for Immediate Assistance

If you are dealing with a sewage backup or need any other assistance with plumbing or water damage restoration, contact us right away. You can reach our plumbers in Boca Raton by dialing (561) 782-2779.

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