Lifeline Plumbing, Heating & Cooling


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Plumbing, Heating & Cooling Serving all of Chicagoland


Tips for Landscaping to Protect Your Sewer Line

Although sewer lines are built to last—and even older material that will corrode over time such as galvanized steel and cast iron will sill endure for decades—the are easily susceptible to a danger that might at first seem harmless: plants and trees. The infiltration of roots from trees and plants is a major cause of blockage and damage to residential sewer lines. Roots are naturally drawn toward moisture and nutrient-rich places in the soil, and that means they will usually grow right toward the sewer line. Roots are insidious and will find ways to reach down into lines, which both damages the line and creates breaks, and can end up clogging at as well.

If you encounter sewer line issues because of root infiltration, call for professional plumbers right away. However, you can help prevent such problems ahead of time with some sewer-wise planting and landscaping tips.

  • First, know where the sewer line is located. Do you know where the sewer line is located under your property? Check with a municipal authority for this information. You can also make a guess where the line leaves your home by locating the sewer cleanout outside. The line will usually run straight to the curb from this point.
  • Keep trees far from the line. Tree roots are the most dangerous to sewer lines since they grow the deepest. Avoid planting trees within 20 feet of where the line runs.
  • Plant shallow-root trees. Not all trees have roots the drive down far into the ground, spread widely, or grow rapidly. Ask a local nursery for suggestions about trees that are sewer-line friendly. Some common trees in the Dundee, IL that have small roots include the Gingko and Japanese maple.
  • Keep line clear for 10 feet. No matter what sort of shrubs or shallow-root trees you plant, you should have an area clear for about 10 feet from where the line runs.

Lifeline Plumbing, Inc. is here to assist you should you encounter root infestation trouble with your sewer line. Practice sewer-line smart landscaping, but know that we’ve got your back if anything goes wrong!