A Sewage backup situation can be a homeowner's worst nightmare. The mess, smell, and potential damage to your home can be overwhelming. Fortunately, most sewer backups are preventable. In this article, we'll cover the top causes of sewage backups and how to avoid them.

What Causes Sewage Backup?

There are many reasons why your sewer system may back up, including:

Clogged Pipes

The most common cause of sewage backup is a clogged pipe. Tree roots, grease buildup, and other debris can cause blockages, preventing water and waste from flowing freely through your sewer system.

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Structural Issues

Structural problems, such as collapsed pipes or damaged sewer lines, can also cause backups. Over time, pipes can become damaged due to age, corrosion, or shifting soil.

Heavy Rainfall

Heavy rainfall can cause the sewer system to become overwhelmed, leading to backups in your home. During a heavy downpour, water can enter the sewer system through cracks and other openings.

Flushing Inappropriate Items

Flushing inappropriate items down the toilet can also cause sewage backups. Items such as baby wipes, paper towels, and feminine hygiene products can get stuck in the pipes, causing blockages.

How to Avoid Sewage Backup

Preventing sewage backups is much easier than dealing with the aftermath. Here are some tips to help you avoid sewage backups in your home:

Regular Maintenance

Regular drain cleaning maintenance is key to keeping your sewer system running smoothly. Have your pipes inspected and cleaned by a professional plumber on a regular basis to prevent blockages.

Proper Disposal of Waste

Make sure you're disposing of waste properly. Don't flush inappropriate items down the toilet, and avoid pouring grease and other substances down the drain.

Install Backwater Valves

Backwater valves can help prevent sewage backups by preventing water from flowing back into your home. This is especially important in areas prone to heavy rainfall.

Proper Landscaping

Proper landscaping can also help prevent sewage backups. Don't plant trees or shrubs near your sewer lines, as the roots can cause damage to the pipes.

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Regular Inspection

Regular inspection of your sewer system can help you catch problems before they turn into major issues. Have your system inspected by a professional plumber on a regular basis.


Sewage backups can be a nightmare for homeowners, but they are preventable. By taking the necessary steps to maintain your sewer system and avoid common causes of backups, you can keep your home safe and free from sewage-related problems.

Call Cactus Plumbing and Air in Glendale, AZ at (623)257-5117 if you need assistance with your clogged drains and sewage backup problems.


What should I do if I experience a sewage backup?

If you experience a sewage backup, the first thing you should do is call a professional plumber. They can help you assess the damage and clean up the mess.

How often should I have my sewer system inspected?

It's a good idea to have your sewer system inspected by a professional plumber once a year.

Can I prevent sewer backups by pouring chemicals down the drain?

No, pouring chemicals down the drain can actually make the problem worse. Chemicals can damage your pipes and cause more blockages.

Is it safe to use a plunger to clear a sewage backup?

No, it's not safe to use a plunger on a sewage backup. This can cause the sewage to overflow into your home.

How much does it cost to fix a sewage backup?

The cost of fixing a sewage backup can vary depending on the severity of the problem. It's best to contact a professional plumber for an estimate.