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Dealing With a Mess in Your Pipes? Causes of Sewer Backups

Dealing With a Mess in Your Pipes? Causes of Sewer Backups - Bio-One of Modesto

We all hate the idea of cleaning sewage backups, but sometimes it just happens. Whether it's caused by a clogged pipe or heavy rainfall, sewer backups can cause environmental and health hazards in our homes. It's important to understand the causes of sewer backups and how to deal with them properly to ensure your safety and the safety of your loved ones. In this blog post, we'll discuss the most common causes of sewer backups and what to do in case of an emergency.

  1. Clogged Pipes: The most common cause of sewer backups is a clogged pipe. This can be caused by flushing inappropriate items down the toilet, or tree roots that grow into the pipes. Always avoid flushing wipes or feminine hygiene products, and avoid pouring grease down the drain.
  2. Heavy Rainfall: Heavy rainfall can overload your sewer system and cause sewer backups. The influx of water can fill the sewer pipes, causing them to back up into your home. If you live in a flood-prone area, consider installing a backflow prevention device to prevent excess water from flowing back.
  3. Broken Pipes: Pipes can break due to tree roots or aging, causing a sewer backup. If you live in an older home or notice slow drainage or gurgling sounds in your pipes, have a plumber inspect them for signs of wear and tear.
  4. Damaged Sewer Main: A damaged sewer main can cause sewage to back up into your home, and, depending on the type of damage, it may be the responsibility of the local government to fix the main. Be on the lookout for the signs of damage, such as strong odors, slow drains in multiple areas of your home, and wet spots in your yard. If you suspect a damaged main, contact your local government immediately.
example of sewage waters in bathroom
Example of sewage waters in bathroom.

What to Do in Case of a Sewer Backup Emergency

If you experience a sewer backup emergency, turn off your water supply or any source of incoming water to prevent additional flooding, and also turn off any electrical circuit in the affected area. Depending on the severity of the situation or if it was indeed a damaged sewer main, you should also contact local authorities and entities for assistance. If it's a sewage backup in your home, consider calling for professional help.

sick person
Image by Freepik

Health Complications from Exposure to Sewage Water or Wastewater

Sewage water or wastewater exposure can cause a range of health complications, especially if it comes into contact with your skin. These include:

  • Gastrointestinal Issues: Exposure to sewage water can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal issues.
  • Skin Irritation: Wastewater contains harmful chemicals that can irritate and damage the skin, causing rashes, infections, or other skin conditions.
  • Respiratory Problems: Sewage water can release toxic gases like methane and hydrogen sulfide which can cause respiratory issues when inhaled.

In addition to these immediate health concerns, long-term exposure can lead to health complications: liver/kidney damage and even neurological disorders. If you experience any symptoms after exposure to sewage water or wastewater, seek medical help immediately.

example of sewage main concrete pipe blocked

Bio-One of Modesto Can Help

Sewer backups are a hassle. Knowing the causes and how to deal with them properly can save you time, money, and most importantly, your health. Remember to dispose of waste properly, install backflow prevention devices, and have your pipes and sewer main inspected regularly. If you experience a sewer backup, don't hesitate to contact a professional sewage cleanup service, like our team at Bio-One of Modesto, for a safe and thorough restoration of your home.