Do you have toilets that won't flush? Drains that no longer drain? There are a number of reasons why your wastewater system can stop functioning unexpectedly, whether they've stopped up entirely or simply slowed down. Some of these are easy to fix, while others are more difficult. All will require the assistance of an experienced plumber in order to get rid of the problem. Some of the most common reasons why your plumbing is no longer working as it should are:
Clogged vent stack: Typically located near one or more of your toilets, the vent stack is a pipe that extends from your sewer line up through your roof. This line allows air to enter the sewer line and for noxious gasses to escape. Sometimes, this line gets inadvertently blocked by roofers, while other times small animals or leaves can fall in. There might not be any immediate problems the first or even the tenth time that this happens, but the debris can build up and eventually cause a blockage. Without airflow, sewer gasses will build up, making it increasingly difficult for your toilet to flush. If this is your trouble, the line cleaning necessary to remove the clog should be extremely quick and your plumbing will be back to normal in practically no time at all.
Plant roots: Plants love organic waste. Plants love water. Both of these things can be found in sewage. Trees and bushes that are growing close to your sewer line will find and exploit even the tiniest crack between the pipe segments. Eventually, enough roots will be growing inside of the pipe that water and sewage won't be able to flow through. A line cleaning, in this case, can be a time-consuming process as your plumber struggles to pull out bits of root. Once removed, he or she can give you a product to pour down your drains on a regular basis to prevent root regrowth, but the roots have to be removed in the first place.
Decaying line: Even though they are buried, sewer pipes can eventually decay. Clay pipes may dissolve, iron ones may rust, PVC can crack, and cardboard-like Orangeburg pipe will eventually collapse. If this has happened to you, a line cleaning is a temporary measure, at best. But by cleaning out the pipe and having it inspected with a camera, you'll at least be able to know how severe the damage is and how long you have to correct it.