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4 Steps To Dealing With Invasive Tree Roots

May, 9th, 2016

Invasive tree roots aren’t just an annoyance, they can result in incredibly expensive sewage repairs in order to keep your home in a livable condition. Don’t wait until it’s too late — we have four ways to deal with tree roots that can help keep your home safe from sewage backups, outright breakdowns, or problems that might even involve having to file with insurance.

Tree Roots Can Be Cut Mechanically

One of the most common methods of removing tree roots is with a mechanical auger. Basically, an auger with a rotating spiral head is sent down through the sewer line, cutting the roots up as it goes. This has the benefit of being one of the least expensive options for tree-root removal.

The downside? You’re treating the symptom, not the actual problem. While the roots that have made their way into your sewer lines will be cut up, they’ll simply grow back over time and you’ll end up periodically repeating the process. While it is often a desirable choice due to cost concerns, the idea that it is less expensive becomes less true when you think about the cost of performing the action multiple times.

Chemical Tree Root Removal

The use of copper sulfate crystals is a common chemical method for killing tree roots, and has the benefit of both treating the invasive roots in the moment and also preventing their return without hurting or killing the tree itself. Another method is a product called RootX, which actually foams up and is preferred by some professionals for that reason. Both chemicals will essentially ‘poison’ both the pipe and the soil around it, so roots that attempt to grow into the area will die before they ever reach your sewer line.

If you decide to go for chemical methods on your own, please ensure that you are wearing adequate protection when working with these chemicals. We cannot enforce enough the importance of proper safety equipment in this situation.

A Hydro Jetter May Be Your Choice

Hydro jets are incredibly effective but can potentially be the most expensive option on this list. Think about pressure washing your house — now imagine all that water pressure funneled into your sewer line. Hydro jets are machines that use a pump, water, and sometimes a spinning spiral tip that remove tree roots using both the simple force of water pressure and the wires at the end, which help to totally clean out the pipes.

The downsides to hydro jets are both its expensive price tag and the fact that you will end up with a similar problem as you do with the mechanical auger — you’ve treated one aspect of the problem, but won’t prevent recurrences in the future. Many professionals will recommend introducing a chemical into the pipes afterward to prevent recurrence.

Dig Them Up

Usually, digging tree roots up entirely isn’t considered until you’ve hit a “last resort” situation. When pipes are damaged enough to require replacement, professionals will send a camera through which allows them not only to get a good look at the full extent of the damage, but also ensure that you, the homeowner, are able to take a look as well. In this case, digging up the tree roots entirely (which may or may not involve taking out the entire tree) may be required to prevent the same problem from destroying the replacement pipes in the future.

Call Corley For Help

If you’re having repeated issues with your sewer line and you suspect that tree roots may be the cause, Corley is the company to call. Our friendly, experienced professionals would be happy to come out and take a look at the problem, walking you through your options and letting you know upfront what kind of costs you would be looking at, whether it’s for repair or outright replacement. Reach us by phone at (864) 416-7492 or contact us online at any time just by clicking the banner below!