Should you worry about tree roots and your sewer?

Tree roots can cause damage to underground pipes and sewers and are a common cause of blockages. Roots are naturally attracted to sewers because they provide a source of moisture. However, root ingress is not usually the cause of damaged pipes.

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What damage can be caused by tree roots?

Tree roots entering your drainage pipes or sewers can undoubtedly cause a blockage, which can lead to problems such as poor drainage, an unpleasant odour and gurgling noises from the tap or toilet. But while tree roots may get into pipes, they are unlikely to cause damage to existing pipes in the first place. This means if there are cracks or faults in a drain pipe, tree roots will exploit them in their quest for water but they are unlikely to cause the initial damage.

The Arboricultural Association indicates that tree roots will only enter drains which are already damaged and leaking. They advise that removing the tree rarely addresses the issue because the drain remains damaged or may be infiltrated by the roots of other plants or trees. If drains are well maintained and in good working order, you shouldn’t need to worry unduly about tree roots.

How to keep drains in good condition

To keep drains in good working order, look out for any signs of a problem and never dispose of wet wipes or hot oil and fat down your drains. It is advised that you have regular drain inspections so any issues can be identified and tackled early. A specialist drainage company will use CCTV equipment to thoroughly inspect your drains without the need to dig. This can help to highlight any damage, obstructions and leaks. Damaged drains may require replacing.

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Where possible, drain lining can be used to give an existing drainage system a new lease of life and is more cost-effective than a replacement. CIPP (Cured in place pipe lining), UV lining and GRP (glass reinforced plastic) lining are all materials that can be installed inside drains to bolster their strength, fix flaws and repair cracks or weaknesses. If you are searching for ‘drain lining Oldbury’, for example, you can opt for the services of a specialist such as

Overall, root ingress is a symptom of a problem with your drains, rather than the cause of it. Tree root damage can be avoided through good drain maintenance.

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