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The Midwest is about to experience spring. New sewer problems arise as the Midwest’s weather warms and spring begins to emerge from its winter sleep. Cracked pipes, blocked outdoor drains, or sewer lines that have been damaged by tree roots can all disrupt a spring.

Cracked, Leaking Pipes

Over the winter, pipes and sewer lines can freeze and crack. As the temperature rises, pipes expand and cracks can develop. A leaking pipe could be indicated by low water pressure for several days.

Blocked Outdoor Drains

Leafs and other yard debris that has been left in fall can build up and block gutters and drains. The accumulation of water in the walls and foundations can cause damage, and attract insects.

What does your sewer line do first?
Simply put, the main pipe runs from your house to either the municipal sewer system (or a septic tank). The central pipe runs under your yard from 3 to 6 feet below the ground.

Tree Roots

Minnesota is home to large trees. Large trees can also have large root systems. Clogs can be caused by these roots as they seek out water and nutrients in your sewer lines. This can lead to costly and complicated sewer back-ups. Older homes in the Midwest may also have concrete or clay pipes that are more susceptible to tree roots. Tree roots can be attracted to any water leaking from your water line or sewer if they are not maintained properly. They can grow into the pipe and cause pipe damage, back-ups, and possibly unhealthy conditions.

What are the signs that I have spring sewer problems?

  • Are there clogged drainages in your hous?  This is often the first sign that there is an obstruction.
  • You can hear the sound of the toilet gurgling.
  • Sinkholes outdoors. Tree roots could cause a sinkhole in your yard. A brightly green patch of grass is another sign. The grass is fed by the water and nutrients of the leaking pipe like fertilizer.
  • Foul smell. The smell of sulfur or rotten eggs will seep into your pipes and cause it to block.

You are in control of your plumbing and sewer lines. Drainage can be greatly improved by performing preventative yard maintenance, such as cleaning leaves and trimming branches in the fall. Regular sewer camera inspections can prevent cracks from becoming a problem and tree roots invading the sewer lines. You can save time and money by catching any possible issue early.


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