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Do You Have A Sewer Main Back Up?

Warning signs your sewer main is backing up

Zeek Plumbing responds to sewer main backups on an almost daily basis. Customers typically notice a clogged tub drain or a toilet first, without realizing there is a bigger issue at hand. A sewer main backup can cause significant damage to your home or property if not handled quickly and properly. Sewage will come up through your shower drains, toilets will not flush, and sewer water can flood your home.

sewer drain backup

Multiple backups in the plumbing around your home

If several sinks, shower drains, and toilets are all draining slow and backing up this is typically the biggest giveaway that your sewer main is clogged. All of your drains run through the sewer main. If the main becomes clogged, it will back up the drains/lines that are connected to it.

Bubbling or gurgling sounds coming from the drain

Air pockets inside your drains and sewer main cause the bubbling and gurgling noises. If your sewer main is completely clogged it will block all water flow through the pipe. Sometimes you will get bubbles or air pockets that work through the clog and float through the line. If you are hearing bubbles or gurgling noises when you are not running any water then you may have a sewer main backup starting to form.

Another drain backs up when using a fixture (faucet, toilet, shower)

For example, if you were to flush your toilet and then water was coming up from another bathroom shower drain. You may also see your sinks or toilets start to overflow when running the washing machine. The water is draining to the next open line because it cannot pass the backup.

Older Homes vs Newer Homes

The older the home/property is the more likely it is to have a tree that has crushed or broken a sewer line. If any moisture or condensation is around any pipes, tree roots will begin to grow in that direction.

Flushing wipes or paper towels down the drain

As explained in another Zeek Plumbing blog post, flushable wipes are not “flushable”. The more paper towels and wipes you flush down your drain, the more likely you will have a sewer main backup. We advise our customers to never flush anything down the toilet besides toilet paper and human waste. All other objects, paper, fabric, garbage, etc. should never be flushed down the toilet. Paper towels and wipes will flush fine, but they do not break down easily in your pipes. A backup will form if the toilet paper reaches an incorrectly pitched line. Refer to the picture below of paper towels one of our crews recently removed from a sewer main.

Main backup

If you are experiencing any of these signs and would like to have a licensed plumber snake your drain, please call 866-635-0200. Our Book Online Form is also available to schedule your drain snaking service.

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We are sooo happy with our experiences with Zeek! We had them out twice - they did a bunch of repairs for us and then when it turned out the problem was deeper than we thought they came back and stuck with it until they figured it out. They were professional, neat, safe and thorough. Huge thanks to Rich for coming out to diagnose the problem and the whole team for hanging in until it was fixed!
Christine E.
Responded quickly, Bill did a great job, no mess. Would definitely recommend...
Vivian D.
We woke up to see a leak coming through our kitchen ceiling, and we feared the worst. Tim and RJ were great. They diagnosed and solved the issue quickly and gave me a very fair price. Very considerate and professional. Highly recommended these guys.
Cristopher N.
Good services, fast response and Steve very helpful.Bill came to my house and fix the boiler.Reasonable price.Will call them again..
Nelson J.
My family and I cannot thank Zeek Plumbing enough! We had a horrible experience with Best Buy trying to get our new washer/dryer installed when we moved into our new house. The team Best Buy hired was a no call/no show twice! Then they said they didn't have the parts they needed, so we ended up canceling their service. We finally came across Zeek and Bill was able to come out the next morning. He was very nice and professional and clearly an expert in his field. The job was done perfectly within a few hours and now our new home is up and running like a well oiled machine. We will definitely be calling Zeek back for anything needed in the future. Thank you!
Ryan L.
Beyond amazing
Jen G.
ZEEK plumbing came through when our Water Heater failed. Called other plumbers but ZEEK was the only one to offer and on the spot estimate and immediate response to replace our water heater.I have used ZEEK before and once again a most professional crew arrived and completed the installation in a timely proficient manner. I would highly recommend ZEEK to anyone's plumbing needs. They truly focus on customer care which is evident in the services performed, THANK YOU ZEEK!
JK M.
Shannon L.
It was a pleasure dealing with Tim from Zeek Plumbing and Mechanical. He and his partner did an amazing job. He is an excellent professional. I will definitely recommend him.
Magaly L.
Recently upgraded to a natural gas grill and was looking for help to connect the line. Bill came by - very courteous and professional. Quick appointment. Reasonable pricing. Would recommend.
Samuel G.
We have used Zeek multiple times and it's always been a great experience. They are informative, prompt, and easy to work with. Will definitely be using them again in the future.
Kathleen P.
I had a leak from my upstairs bathroom which was coming from an old 3” copper drain pipe connected to the toilet. Tim from Zeek Plumbing replaced the 3’ section of drain pipe with plastic and braced the new pipe to make sure it remained sloped in the right direction. Tim also reinforced the flooring under the toilet which had weakened over the years, and now the support is very strong. Tim was very professional and most importantly wanted to make sure the job was done right!
Joe L.

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