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Yearly Archives: 2019

Plumbing Terms

You’re going to want to be prepared for what your plumber has to say about the tree roots blocking your pipes. Maybe you already talked to your plumber and you didn’t completely understand everything he said.

In any case, here’s a list of terms that may be basic to your plumber, but not so basic to you:

Backfill: Soil used to refill a trench that was dug up to excavate pipes.

Bedding: Material laid under a pipe that supports it and keeps the pipe from shifting in the soil.

Boundary Trap: A point of disconnection between your property/properties sewer and thelocal authorities  main. All your sanitary  plumbing runs to this trap. It has a water seal to stop the smell from the sewer coming back up the line.

Cement Mortar Joint: A socket joint or pipe bendmade out of cement.

Choke: A blocked drain.

Clearout: See I.O.

Conduit: A fancier word for pipe.

Defect: Decaying material, abnormality or obstruction in pipes that effects your plumbing.

Sanitary Drain: The plumbing (within your property line) that carries waste water away from your home or business. This type of drain includes any fitting or pipe that’s outside of the building.

House Drain: Plumbing, within your sanitary drain system that carries waste water from sinks, toilets, equipment and tubs. This type of drain includes any plumbing that’s inside of the building.

Drainage Diagram: A map or plan of the approved sewer lines throughout your property, available from your local water authority, usually attached to a property ”contract of sale”.

Drainoscopy: A drainoscopy is the process of surveying your drainage pipelines with a high tech purpose built camera. It really is the only way to see what is going on underground. A drainoscopy will show pipes, pipe joints, tree root penetrations, damage or even collapsed sections of pipe. A drainoscopy can be  recorded and forwarded to you via email.

Helio: Plumbers over the age of 30 refer to this. See Drainage Diagram.

Infiltration: Unintended ground or storm water that makes it’s way into the sanitary/sewer drainage system, usaully through cracks in pipes or joints, or tree root penetrations.

Installation: The creation of your network of pipes and fixtures or just your network of pipes and fixtures.

I.O. Inspection opening; a point of access into your house drains and branches.

Main: Usually owned and maintained by the local “Water authority”.

Pulling: Manually removing pipe obstruction by pulling a disk through the plumbing.

Rodding: Manually removing pipe obstruction using a system of jointed rods, like an electric eel.

Root Foam: A chemical foam mixture applied to pipes after mechanic root removal to prohibit future plant intrusion and reinforce pipes.

Root Penetration: Tree roots growing into plumbing, pipes, drains and sewers.

Rubber Ring Joint: A type of pipe joint seal that’s made out of chemically treated rubber circa; 1970-85

Sewer Main: The publicly owned pipes that carry waste water away from your property.

Sludge: Sort of the opposite of scum, this is pipe obstruction that sinks to the bottom of plumbing.

Spigot or Socket Joint: The male end of a pipe.

Sullage: Household waste water, specifically from sinks, kitchens and laundries.

Surcharge: Pipe or drain overflow cause by a combination of plumbing blockages and an abundance of rain. It could be from the main.

Surcharge Gully: An outside drain which may have a tap over. It is lower than your lowest floor drain, so that surcharge occurs here, not inside your home. It also has a water seal.

Blocked Drain Solutions

STOP TREE ROOTS IN PIPES

  1. Substantial damage can be caused to your sewer system by the invasion of tree roots into the drain pipes which have been cracked as a result of natural settling, age or wear.  Trees are good at finding water and their roots can travel a hundred feet to get to the nourishment they need.
  2. Tree roots in your sewer line can be a constant problem that you can do without.  Blocked drains can be one of the most frustrating and inconvenient, not to mention one of the most costly problems you can have at your home.  So it is important to remove tree roots from sewer lines to ensure the free flow of liquids through your sewer system.
  3. You have to understand the tree’s root system, how it grows, before you start cutting tree roots.  That way you can significantly reduce the harm to the tree, and possibly to you and your property.
  4. Be aware that by cutting the roots the tree will react by producing a large number of smaller roots which means the tree roots grow back and may cause future issues.
  5. Drains when clogged, tend to be the most difficult problem of all the household emergencies.  There is often no warning before a blocked drain occurs and you are faced with a stinky home, flooded floors and power knocked out as a result.
  6. No matter how stressed you are or how chaotic things have become, a blocked pipe isn’t a disaster; it’s simply just another problem that needs fixed!  The first thing is try to locate the problem and then you can decide whether it’s fixable or whether you’ll need to call in a professional.
  7. Underground sewer pipes are prone to attack by tree roots.  The small roots work their way through the pipe connections and, if given sufficient time, they will effectively clog the system.  Cleaning a sewer pipe is an unpleasant task at best, and if you continue to experience a clogged sewer pipe you need to take the necessary steps to have the problem dealt with.
  8. Proper drain cleaning for sewer pipes that have tree root problems is not, luckily, a very difficult job using today’s plumbing technology to remove roots in pipe.  You can call in a professional to handle the situation for you.
  9. The main cause of sewer backups is the invasive nature of tree roots.  Seen as ‘An Unseen Predator’ these tree roots will penetrate not only soil, but sewer pipes as well. You therefore have to look into methods of safe tree root removal that will stop roots re-entering your pipes and will save yourself the expense of having to keep clearing and maintaining them.
  10. There are some products that you can use which claim to kill tree roots in sewage lines, but they quite often don’t take care of the problem adequately and you wind up with worse problems that before.  Therefore you will need to seek professional guidance for finding an environmentally safe process for removal that will do the job for you.