Drought causing headaches for homeowners, sewer lines - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Drought causing headaches for homeowners, sewer lines

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By: Cole Miller

Often times, this drought has us worrying about our lawn and how green it is or isn't. But down below, your trees could be looking for water and where they're finding it, is creating problems. 
Is it the most glamorous job? Not likely, but somebody has to do it. Lately, the team at Roto-Rooter here in Lincoln is doing a lot more of it.

"The sewer line that handles all the wastewater for the house was plugged," owner Mark Cuttler said.

With the help of a small camera, we can see tree roots have made their home in this sewer line.

So what exactly are they doing here?
"I'm sure it's due to the drought. They have a good water source, a sewer pipe full of water, the ground is real dry, that's what trees do," Cuttler said.

A veteran plumber, Cuttler says it's a problem sprouting up more frequently. He says most new homes won't have these kinds of problems, but older ones with older pipes face a higher risk of invasion.

"We cut away what's hanging in the pipe. They've still penetrated through the joint and their diameter increases."

Once that happens, Cuttler says the pipes can give, creating a big problem. With no way real way to prevent this headache, he says getting an inspection can save a lot of time and money.

"I would say do this again in a year. They're going to be back," Cuttler said.

Cuttler says it'll set you back about $200 dollars, compared to nearly $2,500 for pipe replacement.
There are chemical treatments available, however Cuttler says those just help slow down the roots and their growth.

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