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Why You Should Get Root Prevention Treatments

By 2 January 2020Winnipeg plumbers

Roots in your sewer line can cause a lot of problems. Before we get into why you should get root prevention treatment, it’s important to understand why and how roots get into your sewer line, and the problems that can occur as a result.


When there’s any kind of an opening in your sewer line – we’re talking about even hairline cracks, trees will sense it. That’s because fluids will start to seep from the crack. Trees are always looking for moisture and because they can absorb nutrients through their roots, the roots will begin growing towards and into the crack. The roots will be small tendrils at first, but over time, more roots will grow into the crack (expanding it) and begin clogging up your sewer line. This problem is especially apparent in Winnipeg because our sprawling urban forest leads to most people having trees on or near their property.


Prevention is a good strategy for a number of reasons. The first is that the age-old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” applies here. It’s much more costly to go in, slice up, and dig out all those tree roots than it is to stop them from growing into your sewer line in the first place. The second is that once those tree roots are removed, there’s no guarantee they won’t grow back into your pipe. In all likeliness, they’ll grow that way again in no time flat, provided there’s still even a little fluid escaping from your sewer pipe. The only other way to avoid the roots growing back is to remove the tree altogether, something that’s not optimal for many homeowners (and impossible for some others).


How, then, do root prevention chemicals work? After all, we need something that’s toxic enough to dissuade the roots from invading the pipe, but safe enough that it won’t kill the tree. That’s exactly what most root prevention solutions are designed to do. The chemical is absorbed by the root, but is so fast-acting that the root doesn’t have enough time to transfer the chemical to the rest of the tree. You’ll need to get regular treatments with the chemical for best results (because the quantities that exist in the pipe will dwindle over time), but it’s a safe and effective method of stopping tree roots from invading your plumbing.


Root prevention treatments should be applied by professional plumbers in Winnipeg. Use the wrong chemicals, and they could react badly with the sewage or corrode the walls of your sewer line. Use too little, it might not be effective, use too much and you’re wasting chemicals. Professional plumbers can also tell you whether or not the problem has gone past the threshold of preventive care and into manual intervention territory. Professionals will ensure that the chemicals used won’t damage the tree, but will dissuade roots from growing into your pipe. They’ll also be able to tell you if there’s a leak in your sewer pipe that needs to be repaired. 

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