A couple of weeks ago we had sewage coming up our floor drain pipe in the
basement. Called the sewer department and they ran a camera thing in the pipe
from the manhole. They told me that roots were blocking the drain and it wasn't
there problem and I needed to call a plumber. They did put a stake in the ground
where the obstruction was.
Of course I couldn't get a plumber to come out the same day and of course I
wanted it taken care of that day. I ended up calling Roto Rooter and they did
come the same day and fixed it for me. The sewer department said my clay pipe
didn't look to have a crack in it or a hole and the Roto Rooter guy said my pipe
felt smooth (what ever that means) and the roots were most likely coming in a
joint. He did tell me that now that the roots have started coming in I would
most likely have to get this done yearly.
This was a long way to get here, but one of my neighbors told me that putting
rock salt in the toilet once a month and of course flushing it could stop this.
He said this has worked for him. Has anyone tried this? Does this work?
They cleared the obstruction, they did not fix it.
Unless you fix it. Rototill does not really want you to fix it because
they will make money every year if you don't.
It may or may not, it also may or may not be against local code.
You really need to fix it. If it did not have a hole or crack and if
the joints were tight, it will not have a problem. You really need to have
it properly repaired, which will likely mean digging and replacing it.
Another alternative is to remove all plants including trees in the area
that might cause problems (note the tree roots may continue to be a problem
for some time after the tree is removed.
in my experience you will never fix the problem. trees and plants like water
there is water in the pipe and they will go after it. Clay pipe will sweat
in when wet, even in the ground. You might try redirect the plants in
question by drilling 2" holes in the ground, then line with thin wall pvc,
say 5 feet deep, away from the line like 10 feet or more but with in the
drip line of the plants. Then water these pipes and try to draw the roots
away from the source of your problems. I did this with a tree, worked until
it died of city canker.
Having roto come out once a year, does not sound so bad unless your really
I own a couple of apartment buildings, and in one I was having the same
problem a while back. Drains backed up and tree roots were found to be the
problem by the plumber. The plumber suggested getting them in every year and
clearing the drains out which we have done. They also suggest either
replacing the drain ($6000+) or getting a liner put in and moulded to the
drain with steam. A slightly better option ($2000+).
Anyway, back to your problem, I found a product in our local Home Depot
(in Ontario), this stuff comes from the States and a few poeple have
mentioned to me that they use it and it works. Time will tell of course. It
is copper sulphate that you put down the drains every 6 months. It is
guaranteed to kill the roots and then they rot and fall away. As you may or
may not know, plant life and copper don't like each other so hence from our
point it is perfect. The product is called Root Clear and the company has a
http://www.ironout.com/products/drain_septic/root_clear.html (for the
product) and www.ironout.com for the home site.
Just remember that this is more of a preventative treatment as once the
drains are clogged with roots this is too late as it takes a while to do its
i have this problem too, same pipe, etc
for 10-15 years now
maybe every 6-18 months
and used to get the rooter guy
but finally started renting the machine and can get it
done in less than 2 hours inc pu and cleaning
for less than $40
so at that rate a year i would have to live here for 100 years
to equate to a $4000 sewer dig up
also tried the copper sulfate? ehh not sure it did anything
and the roebic stuff, that lasted the longest but after 18 mths it
also let the roots in
your best solution might be to buy a 50 foot rooter from
harbor freight, just saw them at $179 and diy
pays for itself in two calls to the rooter guy
my problem is 70 feet down so??
the rental store is my ans
hope this helps
On Fri, 09 Jan 2004 13:29:06 GMT, email@example.com wrote:
1. Replace the sewer line from the house to the city. Ck local codes
on what to install. Can be expensive but you won't have the problem
again if you use a sealed pipe like PVC or HDPE. There are other
options then just digging up the pipe. Blow in liner or trenchless
pipe replacement. Get a good plumber
2. Spot repair.. Dig up the bad spot and replace that section. With
clay pipe the chances are you will get another root intrusion some
other place in the future.. they like that sewer water!
3. Root treatment - there are a number to chose from .. Copper
Sulphate is an every 6 mo or so treatment and you might have to call
the Roto-Rooter guy back every couple of years. There is other
products like Rootx that are foam that seem to get a better line
"Ask The Plumber"
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