Sewage Backup: Signs to Look For

Modern plumbing seems like a miracle to many people. With a single flush, all your waste is gone. Out of sight, out of mind, right? Unfortunately, waste’s lifecycle isn’t done once you stop seeing it. To properly dispose of your waste, your plumbing system needs to drain through your main sewer line and into the community septic system. This process is disrupted when the sewer line is clogged or broken. Before you know it, you could have a flood of sewer water all over your home. Not only is this nauseating, but it can also be extremely costly. Repairing damage from untreated sewage backups is something no homeowner should deal with, so we want to share the signs you need to look for to avoid the hassle.


What causes sewage backups?

To understand what you need to look for, you should be familiar with what causes sewage backup. There’s a variety of reasons, but the most common ones are age, human error, and natural events. Over time, your plumbing naturally wears out. Heavy use makes buildup almost unavoidable. Older homes should have their plumbing regularly maintained to avoid a catastrophic sewage backup, but sometimes pipes just reach the end of their life and need to be replaced. Prolonging the lifespan of your sewage system is easy. Watch what you put down the drain! Plumbing isn’t designed to handle a constant barrage of food scraps, hair, and even feminine products. Don’t flush or rinse down anything which can be thrown away. You’ll find your pipes last longer with proper preventative care. Of course, there’s always the risk of a natural disaster, such as a tree root puncturing your sewer line. These may not be avoidable but knowing how to catch it when something does happen is key.


What signs indicate a sewage backup?

Phew, what is that smell?! You guessed it: the most obvious sign you have a backup is a persistent smell of sewage. If you’re constantly getting foul whiffs, it’s time to call a plumber. Smells may not always happen, which is why it’s important to pay attention to other warning signs. Things such as your toilet or drain bubbling up may seem innocent, but they could be an indicator you’ve got a block. Typically, when drains don’t work as they should alarm bells need to ring. Even something like multiple clogged pipes can be indicative of a sewage backup. Multiple clogs show that water is unable to pass through the main line (as opposed to just having something stuck in a single drain). If you’re noticing all of the drains on a single section of the home is having difficulty draining, take heed: you may have a sewage backup.


Prevention is key to avoiding costly repairs from sewage backups

Say you see some of the warning signs in your own home. How do you handle the situation? To start, don’t panic! Step number one is to see if you can find a cleanout. A cleanout is a small, white tube sticking out of the ground on the exterior of your home. Not every home has one, but if you’re lucky you can unscrew the top and allow some of the gas to escape. It may overflow, but that’s not necessarily bad; better outside than in. The next step is to turn off the home’s water. This stops any additional damage from happening. After that, give your trusted emergency plumber a call! They’ll be able to locate the issue and handle it with the appropriate tools and expertise. For any of your plumbing needs contact Sin City Plumbing at (702) 431-6502.


Scroll to Top