With summer storms comes the potential for sewer backups. And while no one can prevent summer downpours, following some essential rules can help you to reduce the risk of backups and other plumbing problems.

Because the majority of plumbing problems are the result of sending the wrong things down household drains, the first step to prevention is reminding your whole family of this one simple rule: Think before you flush.

There are only three things that are truly safe to flush — waste, wastewater and toilet tissue. Anything else can clog sewer lines, causing the system to back up or overflow, and it can even damage system machinery. Be sure to avoid flushing these common backup culprits:

  • Diapers and baby wipes
  • Paper towels and tissues
  • Cotton swabs
  • Clothing labels
  • Sponges
  • Cigarette butts
  • Aquarium gravel or kitty litter

Even if the label on any of these items says “flushable,” it’s best to choose the trash instead of the toilet.

Of course, threats to your sewer lines exist outside of your home, too. In fact, tree roots pose a major threat to the sewage system outside of your home. Roots can penetrate pipes and cause serious blockage and backup. When planting trees in your yard, it’s essential to avoid planting near your home’s lateral sewer line.

Keep in mind that your plumbing system will work best with regular inspections and maintenance. In addition to following sewer rules like “think before your flush” and keeping outside threats from damaging your pipes, relying on the expert plumbers at Blind & Sons can help you avoid the hassle and expense of sewer backups. Call on us to repair, maintain or improve your plumbing system and rest easy — we offer a 100% money-back guarantee.

Sources: Sewage-problems.com, City of Ann Arbor, Michigan