Roots in Drainage Pipes - Solved!


An update from yesterday's post - we were able to get the roots out of our underground pipes!

Here's how. 

Actually, the story gets even better. 

By the time I'd gotten home, our sump pump was working properly again. 

My father-in-law cleaned up the switch/floater mechanism - the problem was literally caused by build-up of dirt. 

But the roots in the pipes were a bigger deal. 

I had always imagined that the roots in our pipes would be heavy, woody roots. 

That's not how it works. It's stringy wads of fibrous roots. Like the picture above. 

In a PVC pipe, it's a problem - but at least the inside of the pipe is smooth, and you can potentially screw a corkscrew auger into the plug and pull it out. 

Our pipe is (amazingly and unfortunately) the standard corrugated drainage pipe you might buy at Home Depot for $5 for 8 feet. 

The roots can grip into the many, many ridges in that pipe. You can get them out, but it's coming out in chunks, usually. 

Even more upsettingly, the fibrous roots got into the pipe RIGHT where it goes under our driveway - and reached about 5 feet under. 

We took turns reaching under the driveway and pulling out fist-sized wads of disgusting roots. 

I reached in with the corkscrew thing we use to attach a dog leash in the yard - that worked, too. 

$7 worth of corrugated pipe, buried in the yard.
But after 40 minutes or so of rodding from the back, and reaching from the front, my father-in-law got the entire plug to move, and pulled the final 3-foot root ball from the pipe. 


One trip to Home Depot later, and we had a $5 pipe and a $2 coupling. 

This will STILL be a terrible, terrible installation. It should be PVC. 

But if we remove the spooky old tree (and it's GOING, maybe as soon as today), the roots shouldn't be able to grow back into the pipe. 

And if we DO get a blockage in the future, we know how to remove it. 

And we got the entire thing done for $7, instead of the $2,795 we were quoted from a west suburban rooter company. 

That's a major success story - sometimes you just have to start digging yourself, to get to the root of the problem. 
Still working after 5 years.

Sorry. I'll show myself out. 

1 comment :

  1. When you need any kind of plumbing work on that time I'll suggest you for visiting denver plumbing because they not only do drain cleaning and sewer line work but also they can do every kind of home repair work. Also they are very famous only for their good work. Again they charge so high for their work.