How To Prevent Sewer Backups In Your Home

Thursday 20th October 2022

Alice Redshaw

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According to the UK Parliament website, there are approximately 100,000 km of sewers across the country. This gives us an understanding of the complexities of the network, and the level of work it takes to maintain them.

At ICE Cleaning, we are experts in sewage cleaning. Delivering services nationwide, our technicians work tirelessly to decontaminate, clean and sanitise all affected areas. We recommend getting any sewage water treated promptly, as it poses many health risks.

Continue reading our blog for some guidance on how to prevent sewer backups in your home.

Avoid clogging the toilet

Clogging the toilet is one of the most common causes of sewage spills in properties. The only substance that should be flushed is toilet paper, though this is often not the case.

Waste such as face wipes, paper towels and sanitary products create many problems in our sewage systems, and should be disposed of by other means rather than down the toilet.

Even supposed flushable wipes may not be completely biodegradable. Warning signs of sewage to look out for incorporate bubbling in the toilet, or a gurgling sound.

If you suspect there may be something wrong, it is probably time to call in a plumber. They will be able to identify the root of the issue and fix it for you.

It is important to be careful with what you flush into the sewage system because of the health effects of sewage exposure. The HSE provides a detailed list of symptoms, which includes:

  • Gastroenteritis
  • Skin/eye infections
  • Occupational asthma
  • Weil's disease

Don't pour grease down the sink

You should also be wary of grease pouring down the sink, as this results in blockages when it solidifies in the drain.

Installing a grease trap for your sink can prevent grease spillage. Be careful not to let food down the drain too, as this can clog the pipes. 

Additionally, make sure to wash away soap scum that has collected around the plug hole. This occurs as a result of residue from hair and wash products used in personal care.

If you experience water damage in the property, what you may not know is that you could encounter mould growth. Taking as little as 24-48 hours to develop, mould is frustrating to get rid of.

At ICE Cleaning, we are mould remediation specialists. We can remove all kinds of mould from your property, in turn significantly improving the air quality. Wherever you're based, you're in safe hands.

Inspect for tree roots

When seeking nutrients and water, tree roots can damage your pipes, leading holes and cracks to form. 

This could result in flooding in your sewer lines. However, there are some steps you can take to avoid tree roots becoming a problem.

If you are thinking of having trees in your garden, you should first establish where your sewer lines are and plant the tree a safe distance away. For any existing trees, inspect the roots regularly to check for wayward growth. 

Another option is to add a barrier in the soil to obstruct trees from reaching pipes. This could be in the form of a permeable or solid barrier, and forces the roots to grow elsewhere. 

Purchase a backwater prevention valve

This valve can be fitted in your basement to help prevent sewer backup from entering the property. It works by enabling waste water to flow away from the home, but stops it from backing up.

Making adjustments to your home like this can minimise health effects of contaminated water exposure. If you wish to install a backwater prevention valve in your property, you're going to need assistance from a professional. 

If you live in an area that sees heavy rainfall, this could be something you consider. Make sure to include this in your regular maintenance checks!

Statista reported that there were 372,533 instances of sewage water being released into waterways by utility companies in England in 2021. This reiterates why it is useful to have flood prevention facilities such as prevention valves or a sump pump system where possible.

In the event of a sewage spill, specialist help is required. At ICE Cleaning, we are fully qualified to dispose of waste contaminated by sewage water, following strict government regulations.

Carry out routine maintenance

Having a professional service periodically check your sewer lines is a good idea. It is a chance to highlight any breakages or cracks within pipes and to make sure everything is working properly.

Problems in your sewer can cause many issues, including flooding your house and mould growth. If the plumber finds anything wrong, they can quote you for any remedial work.

It is best to get your pipes inspected because dealing with sewage backup can be an expensive and large undertaking. It could also impact the health of your loved ones because of the harmful bacteria and viruses found in the water.

It is also worth educating your family on what should not be put down the toilets and drains to prevent sewer blockages from occurring.

Contact us today

To find out more about the sewage cleaning services we provide, reach out to our friendly support team today on 0208 066 0360 or We're here to answer any questions or concerns you have.

Zoe Dunning

Zoe Dunning

Sales Representative

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