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7 Signs Your Sewer Lines Needs To Be Repaired Or Replaced

Dysfunctioning sewer lines can make your life hell. And even after taking many percussion people eventually fail to restrict sewer line problems. This is applicable to both residential and commercial properties. Over time, sewer lines can deteriorate or encounter issues.

So, what are the signs your sewer lines need to be repaired or replaced?

Several signs show problems associated with your sewer lines,

  • Like wet spots on the landscape
  • Clogged outlets
  • Unusual noise from the drain system
  • Varying levels of toilet water, etc.

Here, we detail this context of sewer line issues. Let’s dive in.

What are the Signs Your Sewer Lines Need to be Replaced?

In the above section, we have given a short answer regarding the signs your sewer lines need to be repaired or replaced. Now, check those indications in detail.

1. Noises Coming from Drainage System

Just after flushing the toilet or discharging the wastewater in the sink, if you hear a gurgling or unusual sound from the drainage system, it’s a sign of sewer line issues. These sounds indicate a possible clog in the pipes: wastewater is still passing but cannot be discharged properly.

Check out this YouTube video to learn the process of unblocking the drainage piping

2. Slow Draining

This sign is mostly observable at water outlets of the kitchen sink, wash basin, bathtub, etc. After or while doing the washing task, if you see the water depositing within the floor part of these features, your sewer lines are experiencing issues.

Note that, in this case, the water won’t retain forever; it will go out, but slowly. Here, most probably, the drainage pipeline is jammed.

3. Wet Spots in the Backyard or Lawn

If you notice puddles in your yard that take a long time to dry up, it is a sign of plumbing issues. Pay attention to squelching noises as you walk around the area. These sounds suggest that your sewer line leaks into the soil, indicating potential broken pipes or cracks.

4. Foul Smell around the Property

A clear indication of a faulty sewer system is the presence of a strong and unpleasant odor stemming from standing water on your property.

If you detect a foul odor coming from your lawn or other areas of your property, you must understand that your sewer discharge system has a major breakdown.

5. Increased Presence of Pests

Increased pest activity around your home is an indication of sewer line issues. Pests are drawn to the dampness and odors from a malfunctioning sewer line. In this case, you have two tasks to resolve the whole issue: addressing the drainage system issue and doing pest control.

6. Toilet Backing Up

Sometimes, when the drainage system fails to deal with the toilet outflows, the dirty water returns repeatedly. If you observe that one or two flushes are not taking out the waste, it’s a clear sign of a sewer line problem. This case is always considered the issue critical.

7. Water Marks on the Walls

A malfunctioning sewer line can lead to increased humidity inside your home, which can contribute to discoloration on the walls. There is a possibility of observing mold formation on your walls.

  • Increased Water Bill

If you notice that your water bill is much higher than usual and you haven’t been using more water, it’s likely because there is a problem with your pipes. A damaged sewer pipe could be causing water to leak or flow more than it should, leading to an increased bill.

  • Green Patches on Your Lawn

Green, thriving spots in a brown yard can signal a collapsed sewer line. In this case, sewage acts as a fertilizer, but long-term use leads to toxins in the soil.

How to Decide on Repair or Replacement of Your Sewer Lines?

Well, deciding whether your sewer lines need to be repaired or replaced is a critical task. And only professionals can provide such a decision after physically inspecting the issues.

However, the table below shows the signs indicating when you should go for repair works and when you should go for complete replacement of the drainage system.

SignsRepair or Replacement
Water Marks on the WallsRepair or partial replacement
Toilet Backing UpRepair or partial replacement
Increased Presence of PestsReplacement
Foul Smell around the PropertyRepair or partial replacement
Wet Spots in the Backyard or LawnRepair
Slow Draining  Repair
Noises Coming from Drainage SystemRepair or partial replacement

DIY Tips to Keep the Sewer Lines Fit

Apply the approaches below to keep the sewer lines’ good-working condition for longer.

  • Install quality drain screens in the sink, wash basin, bathtub, and other wastewater outlets
  • To prevent root intrusion, avoid planting large trees or shrubs near your sewer lines
  • Discharge hot water through the lines from time to time
  • Regularly use enzyme-based drain cleaners to help break down organic matter and keep your drains flowing smoothly
  • Avoid pouring grease, oil, or food scraps down the kitchen sink


Here is some general knowledge regarding sewer line problems.

Q: How can I prevent sewer line damage?

Regular maintenance and preventive measures can help minimize sewer line damage. We suggest you avoid flushing non-flushable items and perform scheduled inspections to identify and address potential problems early on.

Q: What is the repair cost of a sewer line?

It depends on the service you have hired, issue criteria, material needed, etc. Please note that sometimes replacing the whole system is better than repairing it. This case is highly applicable to drainage systems with long-gone pipes. However, in general, the repair or replacement cost ranges from $1,000 to $4,000.

Q: Can tree roots cause damage to sewer lines?

Yes, tree roots can infiltrate and damage sewer lines over time. They are attracted to the moisture and nutrients inside the pipes, leading to blockages, cracks, or breaks in the sewer line.

Final Words

Living in a residential property or using a commercial property with faulty sewer lines is more than a nightmare. It is essential to pay attention to the signs your sewer lines need to be repaired or replaced. From foul odors and slow drains, any of the signs mentioned above should not be ignored.

We strongly recommend you contact the professional just after seeing a single sign to restrict the increased severity of the line damage. However, regular maintenance and preventive measures can help minimize sewer line damage in the long run.