Do you want to plant a tree in your backyard? If so, you may not be aware of the potential damage that a tree can do to a home's sewer line. The tree's roots will seek out water wherever they can, and one place they will go to is an underground sewer pipe. Over time, the roots can eventually penetrate the pipe and lead to backups, clogs, leaks, and expensive repairs. Here is how you can successfully plant a tree in your backyard and not have it interfere with your plumbing.
Find The Sewer Line's Location
The first step is figuring out where the sewer line is located and if the tree's location is going to cause a problem. The best way you can do this is to contact a plumber to figure it out for you. There are devices that can be put into the sewer cleanout pipe that will give an electronic signal that can be read from above ground. It gives you the ability to figure out exactly where the sewer pipe is located so you can avoid planting a tree above it.
Use An Underground Barrier
It may be worth it to excavate your backyard and place a barrier underground that will prevent the tree's roots from reaching the sewer line. These barriers are made out of metal and can be placed between your sewer line and the tree to stop those roots from causing a problem. This may be the only solution if you have a small backyard and not many choices.
Plant The Right Kind Of Tree
There are a few things to consider when picking the kind of tree that will be installed in your backyard. The first thing to think about is the size of the tree's root systems. Some trees have very extensive root systems that will extend very far into your yard and seek out that sewer pipe. Other trees have small root systems that don't go past the tree's canopy. The latter allows you to accurately predict how far a tree's roots will grow and if they'll reach that sewer pipe.
Some trees to avoid with fast-growing and aggressive root systems include willow, sycamore, birch, willow, ash, elm, and poplar trees. For help selecting the right kind of tree that will not cause as many problems, reach out to a local tree service in your area that can provide you with more information.