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Preventative blocked drain maintenance Sydney NSW

Preventive Drain Maintenance

Home > Blocked Drain Services > Preventative Drain Maintenance

What Is Preventive Drain Maintenance?

Preventive drain maintenance is a type of plumbing maintenance strategy for damaged underground drains affected by tree root intrusions you do not want to fix that involves regularly checking, servicing, and cleaning of sewer or stormwater drainage pipes to prevent blockages and prolong their lifespan by slowing down structural damage. It is a proactive approach to drain maintenance that identifies and resolves potential issues before they escalate.

Preventive drain maintenance aims to minimize unexpected downtime, reduce drain clearing and repair costs, and improve the reliability and safety of underground sewer and stormwater drainage systems. This type of drainage maintenance involves performing routine CCTV drain inspections and high-pressure water jet cutting to remove tree root regrowth.

Regular Drain Servicing for Problem Drains You Do Not Want to Fix

If you are one of the small number of homeowners who know you have established tree root intrusions growing into your drains and have been carrying out preventive drain maintenance servicing of your sewer line or stormwater drain on a regular basis to trim the tree roots back to keep your drains running to avoid blockages, stress, and high drain clearing and repair costs, our tree root trimming service will apply to you. If you are one of the many homeowners who know you have established tree root intrusions growing into your drains but wait until the drain blocks up and festers into a full-blown diabolical Sydney blocked drain disaster before calling a plumber, then read on.

50% of our drain clearing work is supplying preventive drain maintenance to existing customers who require regular water jet root cutting and CCTV drain inspection services to remove tree root regrowth to maintain a clear and functioning sewer or stormwater system because they have made a decision not to repair the damage to their pipes which is allowing tree roots to regrow causing recuring blockages. Continually cutting and trimming tree roots regrowing inside your drains is like pruning a hedge or mowing your lawns, once the tree roots inside your drains have been cut back to clear the blockage, if not trimmed regularly they will grow back again over time causing further structural damage and recurring tree root blockages. Regular servicing of these defective drains before they block up will keep your sewer or stormwater system clear and flowing and extend the life of your drainage pipes without experiencing inconvenient and annoying full blown tree root blockages and high drain clearing costs.

Why Is Regular Sewer and Stormwater Drain Servicing Important?

Tree roots grow into ageing drainage pipes through defects, failed joint seals between pipes, and small hair line cracks. Once the tree roots have penetrated the pipe, they grow both in "length" and "diameter" until cut back by root cutting during the drain clearing process. Blockages are caused by tree roots growing too long inside the pipe by catching waste material flushed down the drain line. Conducting regular drain servicing by cutting or trimming roots back before they get too long will avoid blockages and high drain clearing costs.

What destroys or rips drains apart is the growth in diameter of the tree roots where they enter the pipes at the failed joints or small cracks. Not carrying out regular root trimming encourages too much root growth in diameter making cracks much bigger, wider, and longer and displaces pipe joints which increases leakage from the drain that accelerates structural damage and encourages further root penetration until eventually the drainage line completely fails or collapses many years or even decades earlier than it would have if regular drain servicing had taken place. Without intervention, damaged drains collapsing is not a possibility, it is inevitable, it is just a matter of time, and the big challenge is trying to guess where you are on that timeline. Preventive drain maintenance eliminates all the guess work and puts the homeowner back in control.

It is also important to know that the above ground symptoms or visual signs telling you that you have a blocked drain underground are always the same whether the blockage is only a small problem caused by something that is clearable like backed up waste material or a bigger issue such as tree root intrusions, or something completely unclearable like a collapsed drain, so always be aware, whether it is a big problem or a small problem underground, the blocked drain symptoms above ground are always the same.

Blockages caused by collapsed or failed drains cannot be cleared and cannot be saved or rehabilitated using pipe relining processes. The only option is excavation and removal of the damaged section of drain and renewal with the installation of new PVC piping. Excavation and renewal of underground drainage pipes can also involve extra work and the added expense of the demolition and reinstatement of expensive surface structures such as concrete slabs, paths and driveways, paved areas, decking and patio areas, landscaping, retaining walls, fences, tennis courts, pool areas, gardens, trees and lawns to name a few. If you know you have tree roots growing into damaged drains that are buried under valuable surface structures on your property, it would be prudent to carry out regular CCTV drain camera inspections of those damaged drains at least every 12 months whether the drain is blocked or not to avoid costly excavations as in this example of a failed stormwater drain damaged in two locations 70 metres apart with both damaged parts working together to cause a driveway to collapse on Sydney's Upper North shore. You can also watch the longer version of the same stormwater repair from CCTV drain camera inspection, location and diagnosis right through to the finished job. Although the drainage service we are working on in the video is a stormwater drain the exact same thing can happen to a sewer line as this stormwater drain was originally installed using much stronger 100mm UPVC sewer pipe rather than lower grade stormwater pipe.

Pipe relining processes are not always more cost effective than traditional excavation and renewal of drainage pipes, however if those damaged pipes are under valuable surface structures as stated above, then pipe relining can save the homeowner thousands of dollars in restoration and reinstatement costs by not having to destroy and rebuild valuable surface structures and landscaping. Not having to destroy valuable surface structures and landscaping is the very reason why pipe relining was invented and what makes the process more cost effective than traditional excavation or trenching methods, which is why pipe relining is also called "trenchless technology". If you don't monitor the condition of your damaged drainage pipes and they eventually collapse, the opportunity to rehabilitate the existing drains and save money by using pipe relining processes will not be an option as you cannot reline a collapsed drain.

Servicing sewer and stormwater drains with tree root intrusions on a regular basis by continually trimming the new regrowth back when needed will stop the roots growing long enough to create blockages and also stops the roots from growing in diameter which significantly slows down the ongoing structural damage to the underground pipes giving a much longer service life. Cleanouts also play a key role in facilitating the preventive drain maintenance service by providing quick and easy access to your underground sewer and stormwater drains which also keeps costs down.

If you have decided not to rectify damaged or defective drains on your property then regular preventive drain maintenance servicing for your sewer and stormwater lines can extend the life and serviceability of your drains for many years if not decades, potentially saving you thousands or tens of thousands of dollars on drainage repairs, excavation and reinstatement costs, service renewals or pipe relining processes and just simply makes sense.

Interesting fact: Experiencing a tree root blockage then letting the problem fester into another full-blown drainage nightmare can lead to an expensive disaster.

It is also possible to have damaged pipes without tree root intrusions causing recurring waste blockages. In this case damaged drains without tree root intrusions only need to be cleared when they block up although regular CCTV drain camera inspections for all damaged drains are recommended for reasons we have already explained. However, if you do have tree roots growing into your drains you will also have damaged pipes as in this instance you cannot have one without the other. If you are sick and tired of having recurring sewer line or stormwater drain tree root blockages and continually clearing tree roots from your drains, you can also talk to us about permanent sewer and stormwater drain repair options to stop this from happening.

Last Word on Servicing Drains Blocked by Tree Roots

Drains underground do not have any moving parts which means if your drains are in good working condition, and you do not flush anything down there you shouldn't, you will never need blocked drain services or have to carry out any preventive drain maintenance and it is very unlikely you will ever experience a blocked drain. However, if you know you have tree roots growing into your drains you will also have damaged or defective pipes and the problem will never simply go away. Ignoring the issue or having a reactive approach by waiting until the drain blocks up again before calling a Plumber is not cost effective, extremely foolish, risky, and counterproductive. Tree root blockages are insidious in nature and do not happen overnight, they fester underground out of sight over many months and in some cases, years before exhibiting above ground visual symptoms of a blocked drain, then some homeowners question why it takes so long to clear their drains! 100% of all known problem drains that take a long time to clear or cannot be cleared due to excessive diabolical tree root infestations that are beyond the capabilities of even the most powerful drain clearing equipment take a long time to clear or become unclearable due to the complete lack of timely preventive drain maintenance by the owner of the drain. If you have no interest in keeping your drains in proper working condition by carrying out drainage repairs when they are needed then my advice, as always, ad nauseum, is to do yourself a favour and be proactive by carrying out regular preventive drain maintenance when needed.

Undoubtedly, all damaged or defective underground drainage pipes at some time in the future will need to be fixed by someone, there is no question about that, the question is, will that someone be you or someone else. Or! will that someone else be you?

Thinking of selling your home with damaged or defective tree root affected drains? People buying and selling homes with damaged tree root affected sewer and stormwater drains is rampant all over Sydney and a lot more common than you think. We get many calls from people who have sold a home with damaged pipes and tree root intrusions only to have moved into another home for a few weeks or months then experiencing a blocked drain caused by damaged pipes and tree roots and quite often the new drainage problem they have inherited is far bigger than the drainage problem they left behind for someone else. Likewise, we get calls from people selling their home wanting their drains cleared of tree roots, so their drains do not block up during the sale process. It's like everyone is playing "musical chairs", and when the music stops, someone is left with a considerable expense and an empty bank account. I am guessing you want that someone not to be you. It's ok, we don't judge, we clear blocked drains for anyone, for whatever reason, It's none of our business!

While I am at it, also be aware that the renewal or rehabilitation of sewer and stormwater drainage systems are usually not included in a home renovation or included in a pre-purchase inspection. People buying established "renovated" homes then discovering their drainage systems are extensively damaged and infested with tree roots is very common. On discovering these types of drainage problems, we often get the same comment from the homeowner, "how can this be, I bought this home because it had been fully renovated!" Well, it all depends on your definition of the term "renovated" or "pre-purchase inspection". When it comes to buying so called "renovated" homes and plumbing systems, it is just putting "lipstick on a pig"!

To put this into perspective from a Plumbers point of view who has been in the business for 46 years and personally cleared over 35,000 blocked drains. Although on a daily basis we are constantly faced with both easy and difficult blocked drain clearing jobs from new customers, we always look forward to travelling around the North Shore of Sydney carrying out multiple short service calls trimming a few small tree roots and carrying out a quick drain camera inspection to keep the drains flowing for homeowners we have formed a great relationship with who may not want to fix their damaged drains but do now appreciate the true benefits of servicing and maintaining their drains rather than the ordeal of breaking our backs and destroying our equipment having to deal with a three or four hour diabolical blocked drain tree root drainage nightmare that with a bit of common sense could have been avoided.

My best advice for homeowners who know they have tree roots growing into their drains. "NEVER" use the above ground symptoms or visual signs of a blocked drain as a trigger point to call a Plumber, stay on top of it! "All" avoidable expensive drainage disasters stem from homeowners ignoring the advice on this page.

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