That Growing Garden Could Be Hurting the Home’s Underground Pipes
April showers bring May flowers. But below ground is a different story. Growing tree roots in the spring can wreak havoc on the plumbing system, and it could be weeks before anyone notices anything is awry. Below, homeowners can learn everything they need to know about root intrusion, the problems it causes, and what can be done to prevent it.
Intruding Tree Roots + Underground Piping Systems = Disaster
Trees give shade when Floridians need it most, and the bigger a tree, the more extensive its root system. Banyan trees, ficus trees, and “umbrella trees” are known for their sprawling root systems that can threaten homeowners’ plumbing systems.
When the weather warms up, tree roots are drawn toward water and nutrients in the soil, which leads them to sewer pipes and water mains. These roots can put pressure on pipes, causing them to buckle or crack under pressure. This can lead to burst pipes, chronic leaks, and other issues.
Intruding Root Systems Can Cause These Problems
- Low water pressure: Sprouts, tree roots, and seeds can take hold in a home’s pipes. This can prevent water from coming and going through the system. In some situations, plant matter can cause hard-to-reach clogs.
- Slow-draining drains: Drains should carry water away from home with no issues. If one notices that a sink, shower, or bathtub drain isn’t draining fast enough, this could point to plant matter stuck in the plumbing system’s pipes.
- High water bills: If a homeowner notices that their water bill is higher than usual, this could mean that the underground pipes are leaking, and water is escaping the system.
- Sinkholes: When parts of the home’s yard sag or collapse, this could point to the long-term water damage caused by root intrusion. Sometimes, sinkholes are accompanied by foul smells and odors, worsening the issue.
If a homeowner suspects that a plant-related issue is causing problems in their home’s plumbing system, they should call a professional immediately to fix it before the damage worsens.
There Are Three Main Solutions to Root Problems
When a professional evaluates a home’s plumbing, they can determine whether root intrusion is an issue. If a tree’s roots are affecting how a home’s plumbing system works, they may suggest:
- Repiping: Some pipes are more susceptible to root intrusion-related problems than others. A plumber may recommend replacing older pipes with newer ones that hold up against plant growth. They might even repipe areas that are at risk for root intrusion.
- Installing a root barrier: A plumber may install a root barrier between a tree’s roots and the underground piping system. Barriers can be made of fabric, metal, or plastic.
- Removing the tree: A plumber may suggest cutting down a tree or removing some plants to prevent root intrusion or prevent an already-existing problem from getting worse.
About Shamrock Plumbing and Drain Cleaning Inc.
Shamrock Plumbing and Drain Cleaning Inc. have focused on providing the residents of Orlando, FL, with top-notch customer support at the best value since 2003. They offer 24/7 emergency response, no overtime charges, and free estimates on select services. Call them today for plumbing services in Orlando, FL.