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Common Causes of Sewage Backup

Sewage backups are among the most unpleasant disasters for homeowners. Waste can be forced back into your home through drains, toilets, or even shower heads. This happens when an intense downpour or obstruction in the sewer line causes the sewage system to overload. Due to the various chemical and biological toxins included in sewage, this backlog not only harms your home but is also dangerous to your health.

What exactly is sewage backup?

When functioning properly, each pipe in your plumbing system only allows wastewater to flow in one direction. This is a crucial component of the plumbing system’s design that guarantees the safety of your home and the water you use. The water you get from your taps comes directly from your main water source, while all your wastewater leaves your home through drains and the sewage line. 

Your faucet’s water shouldn’t be using the same pipes as the contaminated water you just flushed down the toilet. A backup is when water enters your plumbing system from the opposite direction. A sewage backup is a term used to describe the backflow caused by a blockage due to dirty sources, such as toilets, washing machines, dishwashers, outdoor pools, sprinkler systems, and gutters.

Why does sewage backup occur?

When there is a blockage in the sewer lines, the water pressure in your potable (clean) water line usually goes down. Backpressure in one part of the system makes the water in nearby places start to flow backward. This is called a sewage backup, and it’s not very pleasant.

What causes sewage backup?

Old Sewer Systems

Typically, PVC, cast iron, clay, or orangeburg are used to make sewer pipes. Although these materials are strong, they aren’t designed to last a lifetime. Sewer pipes will inevitably deteriorate and collapse as they age, causing backups.

Sump pumps, Downspouts, and Gutters Leading to the Sewer

There’s no issue with connecting your gutters, downspouts, and sump pump to storm sewers. During severe storms, water can flow through gutters and sump pumps. Because sanitary sewers aren’t made to handle such enormous amounts of water, a backup is very likely.

Tree Roots

Tree roots can spread widely and pose threats to your sewage lines. Roots enter service pipe joints and cracks in sewer lines, where they can grow and cause damage and obstructions. 

Domestic Clogs

Hair, a buildup of cooking oil, or other solid substances that wastewater pipes are not designed to handle cause clogs in your home’s drain pipes.

Issues with Municipal Sewers

If city sewer blockages aren’t found and fixed right away, sewage can back up into homes through floor drains. Typically, this issue develops gradually and presents no early warning indications.

Sewage backups also cause health hazards!

Two things should worry a homeowner with a sewage backup issue: health hazards and property damage.

Sewage backups have the potential to contaminate your water with numerous viruses, bacteria, and other dangerous substances. The inhabitants of your home may become pretty ill due to these toxins. A few of the bacteria commonly found in sewage that can harm humans are E. coli, Hepatitis, and Leptospirosis. They commonly cause: 

  1. Diarrhea
  2. Muscle aches 
  3. Cramps 
  4. Vomiting


You can prevent backup issues before it’s too late.

Though most notice sewage backup only after the deed has happened, here are some quick ways to look into the issue before it occurs. Be sure to contact ASAP Restoration if you detect any of the following signs:

  1. Differences in water pressure
  2. Strange or terrible taste of water
  3. Dirty or discolored faucet water
  4. Regular clogs in faucets
  5. Toilets don’t flush or backup flushed water
  6. Bubbles near the drains
  7. Multiple blockages in different drains at the same time
  8. Drains emitting sewage scents or unpleasant smells

ASAP Restoration has the experience and expertise to help you out! 

If you want to know more about sewage backup, you can have an expert solution consultation with ASAP Restoration, Phoenix’s leading restoration agency. We are your one-stop shop for water damage cleanup services, fire damage restoration, mold damage mitigation, and reconstruction. With a single phone call, your property will be on the road to restoration. Apart from this, 24×7 customer support is our USP. Call us at 602-691-4655 or write us at for any support or service-related query. Request a free quote or get in touch with us!

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