A man in a red shirt kneeling on soil next to a tree and some flowers

Landscaping Mistakes That Will Hurt Your Plumbing

Beware of These Common Mistakes

You may not think about your plumbing when planning for landscaping, but these two essential home maintenance areas can significantly impact one another. Specifically, we’re talking about how a few common landscaping errors can harm your home’s plumbing system.

As a homeowner, you want your plumbing to operate as smoothly as possible. This includes preventing clogs, leaks, pipe bursts or intrusions, and other problems. Usually, we focus on what you do inside your home, but this article addresses the outside. The decisions you make with your landscaping can significantly impact your plumbing system.

Here are a few common mistakes we see that you should avoid.

Mistake 1: Not Knowing Where Things Are

This may sound simple, but the knowledge of your home’s plumbing layout can save you a lot of headaches and money. Make sure you know where these important elements are across your property:

  • Sewer line
  • Main water line
  • Sewer cleanout
  • Gutter downspout
  • Septic tank
  • Outdoor faucets

Most of these are pretty easy to find if you have them. The most crucial piece is your sewer line. This is the gateway in which wastewater leaves your home. And the cleanout is the access point at which a plumber can work to relieve a clog or perform preventative maintenance.

Knowing the location of these plumbing elements should guide you in where to plant (or not to plant) trees, install a pool, dig a hole, and more. This knowledge can also help you troubleshoot when your plumbing system seems awry - You’ll be able to check to make sure the area around your sewer line or septic tank isn’t flooded. Or make sure your outdoor faucets aren’t leaking if your water bill spikes.

Mistake 2: Covering Access Points

After you figure out where all the essential elements are, you need to make sure they remain free of blockage or interference. Specifically, make sure a plumber can access either your sewer or septic system.

The sewer cleanout acts as the access point for home sewer systems. You’ll (hopefully) see this device sticking out of the ground near your home. It allows access to the sewer line For maintenance, clearing, or video inspections. It can also be used in trenchless sewer repair. If the need for sewer repair arises, this method is less invasive, time-consuming, and costly.. You also want to avoid covering the top of your septic tank, as it will make it difficult to see and access in an emergency.

If you cover these access points with stone, furniture, plants, trees, or other landscaping elements, it could hinder the ability of your plumber to gain access to your sewer line.

Mistake 3: Planting Around Sewer Lines

If you love gardening or want to spruce up your yard with some plants or trees, make sure that whoever plants them stays clear of your sewer line. One of the most significant threats to a functioning sewer line is invasive tree roots.

When planted, tree roots expand and grow, and if there is a sewer line in their path, the root will often crack or even break through the pipe. This can cause a clog in your sewer line and even lead to sewage backing up into your home (something no one wants).

Mistake 4: Not Getting Professional Help

When looking to make significant changes to your yard, consider consulting with a professional landscape, or a licensed plumber to help locate crucial parts of your plumbing system. At Plumbing & A/C Medic, we are an elite workforce of trade professionals. Call us to help you find your plumbing access points, sewer lines, and steer you away from making these common mistakes with your landscaping. Contact us today at (602) 975-2306.

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