Plumber Northern Beaches Tips: When trees cause problems

A number of plumbing issues may concern Northern Beaches homeowners like serious clogs, burst pipes, and foul odours emitting from the drains, but seldom do they think about how trees can affect their plumbing.

We asked local Northern Beaches plumbers for their tips on how to detect if trees are causing plumbing problems.

Read on to see what we found out.

Plumber Northern Beaches tip 1: Understand the relationship between your tree root system and plumbing system

The beautiful trees you have on your property all have a root system, otherwise the trees would die. The root system is how your trees capture water from the ground. It’s these same roots that can also cause problems with your plumbing system.

What are tree roots attracted to plumbing pipes and lines?

Condensation occurs on and around storm water drains and sewerage. Since roots are the source of how trees get their life-giving water, they seek out water. Condensation is water, so the roots are drawn to these areas.

How can tree roots hurt your plumbing?

We found out that tree roots, while they seem harmless, are extremely powerful and that’s where the trouble begins. Roots are aggressive when it comes to locating water sources, and once they find them around your plumbed areas, they block your drains.

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Plumber Northern Beaches tip 2 : Let the professionals evaluate

Whether tree roots are causing your plumbing problems or not, you need a qualified local plumber to check it out for you.

You may not realise that this requires more than a “quick fix” to repair, but in the case of tree roots, there could be more to it. Let your plumber check out the drain using a special camera that is mounted onto a “snake-like” tool designed to fit into the pipes. The plumber runs this snake through your pipes and looks for the offending blockage.  Using this plumbing tool allows them to find the obstruction and from there they can identify the cause, find the precise location of the blockage, and recommend a solution that will fix it for a long time.

When tree roots are found to be the offending source, the plumber will check to see if the pipe is damaged and will recommend that you replace it if damage is present.

Having to replace the pipe is an expensive process, but early detection and long-term solutions will help you avoid future problems.

Plumber Northern Beaches tip 3: Ways to prevent tree root blockage

It is said that prevention is the best course of action, and in this case, we agree.

Here are some of the preventative measures you can take to avoid tree root plumbing issues:

  • Early detection – As soon as you start noticing drain blockage, call a plumber. They will run the CCTV drain camera through your system and find out if it’s a tree root or something else. If a tree root is the problem, it is recommended that you remove the offending tree to prevent further issues with that area of your plumbing.
  • Landscaping – If you are planning to make changes to your landscaping, it’s wise to consult with an arborist before adding trees. An arborist will know what trees should and should not be planted near plumbing pipes.
  • Reline pipes – Depending on the damage done by tree roots your pipes may have to be replaced. There is nothing wrong, however, with asking your plumber if relining them will work for the long-term.
  • Replace old pipes – PVC pipes should be used to replace old clay pipes to prevent tree root damage. If you know your property has clay pipes, consider replacing them with PVC. It will probably be cheaper than repairing major tree root damage.

We hope this information and these tips will be helpful to Northern Beaches residents. Remember to seek help from a local, professional plumber for any kind of plumbing issue. This will help you avoid extensive and expensive repairs and problems.

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