Top 5 Warning Signs of Sewage Backups
By Daniel Burke, 9:00 am on February 13, 2021
A sewage backup in your home can lead to costly repairs to your sewer system and pipes. Recognizing the warning signs of a backup beforehand can save both money and the time needed to clean up a smelly, unhealthy mess. Contact a professional plumber or sewer expert immediately if you see one or more of these warning signs.
1. Toilets that Don’t Flush Properly
Toilets should flush and fill up again quickly and easily. If you notice the water in your toilet (or toilets) drains or refills slowly or the toilet has stopped draining or refilling completely, you may have a sewage backup.
Before contacting a plumber, use a plunger to try and dislodge the clog. If a clog has formed further along in the pipe, using a plunger to dislodge the clog won’t work. If you can’t dislodge the clog on your own, seek the services of a professional plumber. You can start with an online search using simple terms such as “residential plumbers near me.”
2. Multiple Drain Clogs
Clogs happen—soap scum, hair, dirt, and other objects can clog a sink or shower drain. To remove the clog, you can clean out the shower drain or remove and clean out the sink’s P-trap.
A single clogged drain doesn’t typically signal a plumbing issue. However, multiple clogs that occur simultaneously may signal significant problems. If you have multiple clogs, especially in drains that aren’t used every day, such as in a guest bathroom or laundry room, you should take this as a warning sign that you might have a large clog somewhere in the sewer pipes.
When a clog is present in sewer pipes, you may notice small bubbles emerging from the drain after turning off a kitchen or bathroom faucet. These bubbles may also appear after you flush the toilet.
Water will always try to move around a large clog, typically resulting in water bubbling back up through your drains and toilets. Water bubbles may occur every once in a while, but bubbles that appear regularly may indicate a deep clog somewhere in the pipes.
4. Foul Odor
Foul odors coming from your sewer system or from the drains inside your home may be the most recognizable indicator that you have a sewer backup. Contact a plumber immediately if you smell sewage. Don’t drink, cook with, or clean with the water in your home until a plumber repairs the sewer lines and treats the water to remove harmful bacteria and other contaminants.
5. Turning on Faucets or Flushing Toilets Leads to Clogging in Other Areas
If you flush the toilet and your bathroom sink drain overflows or a lesser-used drain like the one in your guest shower overflows, you probably have one or more clogs somewhere in the pipes that run through your home. Check all the drains and toilets in your home to see if they’ve overflowed to confirm the issue isn’t a one-time occurrence.
If you find yourself dealing with a sewage backup or any other type of plumbing problem in your home, don’t hesitate to call on Burke Contractors. We only contract with licensed and experienced plumbers to ensure our clients receive high-quality service delivered with outstanding professionalism. When they need an exceptional residential or commercial plumber, San Diego residents can rely on us to connect them with the finest professionals available. If you need plumbing services of any kind, call us right away at 858-208-7765.