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Warning Signs of Collapsed Sewer Line

Signs of a Collapsed Sewer Line: 5 Symptoms You Should Look Out For

A collapsed sewer line can cause a lot of damage, and it’s important to know the signs so you can get it fixed before it becomes a bigger problem.

Over time, sewer lines can become less and less structurally sound due to tree roots, shifting soil, and old age. By being aware of the signs that your sewer line is compromised, you can take steps to prevent any further damage, and you can assess if you need to call a plumber for a sewerline repair.

In this article, we’ll go over the most common signs of a collapsed sewer line so you can diagnose the problem and decide your next steps. But, before we get into it, let’s take a look at what causes a sewer line to collapse in the first place.

What Causes a Collapsed Sewer Line?

A few different things can cause a sewer line to collapse. Here are some of the most common culprits:

Tree Roots

tree roots growing in the sewer line

Tree roots can grow into sewer lines and cause them to collapse. They can also clog the line and lead to backups and flooding. When dealing with tree roots, the first step is to use a root cutter machine to manually remove them from the line. You can also try a hydro jetting service which utilizes high pressure water to cut out the tree roots in the sewerline. 

Shifting Soil

Over time, soil can shift and settle. This can cause a sewer line to collapse, especially if there is no proper support. In some cases, you may be able to fix the problem by adding additional support to the sewer line. If the soil is too unstable, you may need to replace the pipe.

Poor Installation

If a sewer line is not installed correctly, there is a bigger chance of collapse. This is why it’s so important to make sure that you hire a qualified professional to install your sewer line so you can avoid this problem in the future.

Old Sewer Lines
old sewer line

Older sewer lines are more likely to collapse than newer ones. This is because they are made of materials that are not durable, or pipes are weakened throughout the years. If you have an old sewer line, it’s a good idea if you will have someone to inspect it regularly, so that any problems can be caught early on.

5 Common Signs of a Collapsed Sewer Line

A few different signs can indicate that your sewer line has collapsed. Here are some of the most common ones:

Foul Odor

If you smell a strong, foul odor near your home, it could be a sign that your sewer line has collapsed. The backing up of sewer gas is usually causing the odor. This gas can be dangerous, so it’s crucial to find a solution to the sewer gas smells in your house.

Slow Drains

slow drain can be a sign of collapsed sewer line

If your drains are taking a long time to drain water, it could signify that there is a back up in your sewer line. This can lead to water spilling over the edge of the sink or bathtub and can cause damage to your home.

If you are using a plunger or drain snake and the water still won’t drain, there’s a considerable chance that your sewer line is collapsing and you need to fix it immediately.

Constant Clogs

If you are constantly dealing with clogged drains almost every day, it’s a good indication that your sewer line is starting to collapse. Smaller items can still make their way through the line, but the larger objects will cause them to clog because the pipes cannot move them along. This can lead to backups, flooding, and gurgling in your toilet.

Soggy Lawns
standing water and soggy lawns are signs of a collapsed sewer line

If you notice that your lawn is always soggy, even when it hasn’t rained in a while, it could be a sign that your sewer line has collapsed. This is usually due to a leak in the line that is causing water to seep into the ground. If you have a soggy lawn, it’s essential to have it checked out to fix the problem. This is much more common with septic systems.

These are just a few of the most common signs of a collapsed sewer line. If you notice any of these problems, it’s essential to have your sewer line inspected with a camera as soon as possible. A plumber will be able to assess the damage and determine if you need to have the line replaced.

Repairing a Collapsed Sewer Line

If your sewer line has collapsed, you will need to have it repaired. There are many different ways to do this, but the most common is by trenchless sewer replacement. There are also many trenchless sewer repair methods, so you must hire a professional to assess the damage and determine the best course of action.


Problems with your sewer line can lead to a lot of damage to your home. If you are experiencing any signs of a collapsed sewer line, it is essential to have it inspected as soon as possible. This will ensure the safety and comfort of your family and property.

If you live in the Lower Mainland of Canada and are having trouble with your sewer line, contact Your Guy Plumbing for a free consultation. Our expert plumbers will assist you in determining the best sewer line installation or repair solution for your situation.

John Relampago

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