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Citrus Heights, CA 95610

What Are the Early Signs Your Sewer Line is Breaking?

Are you noticing strange odors coming from your drains? Are multiple fixtures in your home experiencing frequent backups or slow drains? These could be early signs that your sewer line is breaking. A broken sewer line can lead to costly repairs and even damage to your property. That’s why it’s important to catch the warning signs early and address the issue before it becomes a major problem.

In this article, we will explore the early signs that your sewer line is breaking and why it’s crucial to reach out to professionals, such as Top Rank Plumbing in Citrus Heights, CA, to handle the issue. With their expertise and experience, they can diagnose the problem and provide effective solutions to ensure your sewer line is back in working order. Don’t wait until it’s too late – read on to learn more about the early signs of a breaking sewer line and how to prevent further damage to your plumbing system.

Importance of a Sewer Line

Your sewer line plays a vital role in your home’s plumbing system. It is responsible for carrying wastewater from your home to the main sewer line or septic tank. Without a properly functioning sewer line, you may experience a range of problems, including backups, foul odors, and even structural damage to your property. Understanding the early signs of a breaking sewer line can help you address the issue promptly and prevent further damage.

Common Causes of Sewer Line Damage

Several factors can contribute to sewer line damage. One of the most common causes is tree root intrusion. Tree roots are attracted to the moisture and nutrients inside sewer lines, and over time, they can infiltrate the pipes, causing blockages and cracks. Other causes of sewer line damage include aging pipes, ground shifting, and poor installation or maintenance.

Early Signs of a Breaking Sewer Line

Detecting the early signs of a breaking sewer line can save you from costly repairs and potential property damage. Here are some signs to look out for:

Unpleasant Odor

One of the first signs of a breaking sewer line is a foul odor coming from your drains. If you notice a persistent sewage smell in your home, it’s likely that there is a problem with your sewer line. The odor may be particularly strong near drains or in your basement. Ignoring this sign can lead to more serious issues, such as sewage backup in your home.

Slow Drains and Backups

Another early sign of a breaking sewer line is slow drains and frequent backups. If you find that multiple fixtures in your home, such as sinks, toilets, or showers, are draining slowly or backing up, it could indicate a problem with your sewer line. This is especially true if the issue persists even after attempts to clear the clogs.

Greener Patches in the Yard

While it may seem unrelated, greener patches of grass in your yard can be an early sign of a breaking sewer line. When a sewer line cracks or breaks, it releases water and waste into the surrounding soil, providing extra nutrients for plants. This can result in areas of your yard appearing lusher and greener than the rest.

Sinkholes or Depressions in the Yard

On the flip side, sinkholes or depressions in your yard can also indicate a breaking sewer line. As the soil beneath your yard becomes saturated with water from the damaged pipe, it can start to erode, causing the ground to sink or form depressions. If you notice any sudden changes in your yard’s topography, it’s essential to have your sewer line inspected.

Strange Noises Coming from the Pipes

If you hear gurgling or bubbling sounds coming from your pipes, it may be a sign that your sewer line is breaking. As water tries to flow through the damaged pipe, it can create air pockets and cause unusual noises. These sounds are often most noticeable when you flush the toilet or use other plumbing fixtures.

Increased Pest Activity

A breaking sewer line can attract pests, such as rodents and insects, to your property. The presence of rats, cockroaches, or other pests in and around your home may indicate a sewer line issue. These pests are drawn to the smell of sewage and can enter your home through cracks or gaps in the pipes.

Taking Action: When to Call a Professional

If you notice any of the early signs mentioned above, it’s crucial to reach out to a professional plumber, such as Top Rank Plumbing in Citrus Heights, CA, as soon as possible. While some homeowners may attempt to handle the issue themselves, it’s best to leave sewer line repairs to the experts. Professional plumbers have the knowledge, tools, and experience to accurately diagnose the problem and provide effective solutions.

Sewer Line Repair Options

Once a professional plumber has assessed the condition of your sewer line, they will recommend the appropriate repair option. The choice of repair will depend on the extent of the damage and the specific needs of your plumbing system. Some common sewer line repair options include:

  • Sewer Line Relining: This method involves placing a new lining inside the existing pipe, creating a smooth, durable surface. It is a less invasive and more cost-effective alternative to traditional excavation.
  • Sewer Line Replacement: In some cases, a complete sewer line replacement may be necessary, especially if the damage is extensive or the pipes are old and deteriorated. This process involves removing the old pipe and installing a new one.
  • Trenchless Sewer Repair: Trenchless sewer repair methods, such as pipe bursting or pipe lining, allow for repairs without the need for extensive digging. These techniques minimize disruption to your property and can be more efficient than traditional excavation.

Preventive Measures to Avoid Sewer Line Damage

While some sewer line issues are unavoidable, there are preventive measures you can take to reduce the risk of damage:

  • Be mindful of what goes down the drain: Avoid flushing items that can clog your sewer line, such as wet wipes, feminine hygiene products, or excessive amounts of toilet paper. Additionally, be cautious of what you pour down the drains, as grease, oils, and chemicals can also contribute to clogs and damage.
  • Schedule regular sewer line inspections: Regular inspections by a professional plumber can help identify potential issues before they become major problems. A plumber can use specialized equipment, such as cameras, to inspect the condition of your sewer line without the need for excavation.
  • Trim trees and shrubs near sewer lines: If you have trees or shrubs near your sewer line, it’s essential to trim their roots regularly. This can help prevent tree root intrusion and minimize the risk of damage to your pipes.
  • Educate household members: Teach everyone in your household about proper plumbing practices, such as not flushing non-flushable items and avoiding excessive use of water during peak times. This can help prevent unnecessary strain on your sewer line.


Your sewer line is a critical component of your home’s plumbing system, and recognizing the early signs of a breaking sewer line can save you from costly repairs and property damage. If you notice unpleasant odors, slow drains, greener patches in your yard, sinkholes, strange noises, or increased pest activity, it’s important to contact a professional plumber like Top Rank Plumbing in Citrus Heights, CA, for a thorough inspection. They can provide the necessary repairs or replacements to ensure your sewer line functions properly and prevent future issues. Additionally, taking preventive measures, such as being mindful of what goes down the drain and scheduling regular inspections, can help minimize the risk of sewer line damage. Don’t wait until it’s too late – address sewer line issues promptly and protect your plumbing system and property.

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When you call Top Rank Plumbing, you’ll always be greeted with expert, exceptional service and care. Our plumbers are highly trained and well equipped to handle any plumbing job.  Each member of our team has passed a strict background check and a drug test for your safety and peace of mind.

Additionally, we utilize the latest and state of the art tools and equipment and sophisticated techniques to ensure the job is done quickly and right the first time. We work with you to find products and solutions that fit your individual style and budget. We make sure our rates are competitive ensuring our customers receive both a high quality and high value experience. Call us today at (916) 414-9493, or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment.



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