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4 Reasons Why You Need a Sewer Cleanout and How to Keep Your Home’s Sewer Free of Blockages

Sewer cleanouts are an important part of your home’s plumbing system. A sewer cleanout allows you to access the sewer lines that run from your house to the city sewers so that the pipes can be inspected for any blockages or other problems. It also enables you to keep your sewer clean, preventing any future problems.

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What is a sewer cleanout and where is it located?

A sewer cleanout is an important part of your home’s plumbing system which allows you to access the sewer lines that run from your house and into the city sewer system for inspection of blockages or other problems. A homeowner should be able to locate their sewer cleanout.

Your sewer piping runs from your home’s drainage pipes to the municipal sewer line. A sewer cleanout is a small hole that connects to the main sewer line.

Having a sewer cleanout means you can remove any blockage from your main sewer line without any extensive excavation process.

A sewer cleanout is a preventative measure that will protect your home and family from flooding and sewage backups.

Where to find a sewer cleanout?

Some homes may already have a sewer cleanout installed. It’s important to know its location.

A sewer cleanout is usually found near a basement window, along a sidewalk, in the yard, or at the edge of pavement where it meets the lawn.

However, in older homes, there may be a drain cleanout located inside. If your home has a cleanout inside, it may be found in the basement or near a toilet.

If your home uses a septic system, the cleanout may be located somewhere outside on your lateral sewer line that is connected to the tank.

A cleanout can come in three sizes; 3-, 4- or 6-inches. In most situations, it’s covered with a plastic cap that is painted white or black, sometimes it has a gold-colored cap to make it easier to spot.

If you survey your property and don’t find a cleanout access point, our expert plumbers recommend installing one on your plumbing system.

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Why your home needs a sewer cleanout

Sewer cleanouts are not only for preventative maintenance, they provide a necessary opening for emergency repairs and diagnosis for any plumbing problem your home is experiencing.

Emergency Repairs

When a pipe breaks in your house, the damage can be severe and expensive to repair. Especially since a broken pipe or blockage can cause sewage to back up into your home.

A sewer cleanout provides immediate access to these lines so a professional plumber can inspect the blockage and remove it without costly and time-consuming excavation.

Clearing blockages or broken pipes

With easy access to your home’s main sewer line, a plumber can use their equipment to quickly clear any blockages. By using the cleanout, our plumbers can use our specialty tools like a sewer inspection camera, a hydro-jetter, and a power rod to diagnose and then address your plumbing needs.

Unlike other plumbing companies, our plumbers come with state-of-the-art Sewer Camera Inspection equipment that allows us to see inside the sewer pipe and locate any problem areas.

Routine Pipe Maintenance

Sewer cleanouts are not only useful for repair jobs and emergency situations, cleanouts enable homeowners to conduct their own routine cleaning. Cleaning your pipes help prevent future clogs and damage.

Most homeowners call a professional plumber to conduct an annual sewer cleaning. With a cleanout installed, this is a painless operation and the plumber doesn’t even need to enter your house! Keeping your sewer clean means no backups or flooding later down the road.

Flood protection

We all know flooding is such a terrible thing, it causes water damage, ruins furniture, and can make a house uninhabitable. Sewer cleanouts provide an access point to prevent any damage or blockage that will grow to become a major flood inside or outside of your home.

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How much does it cost to install a new sewer cleanout?

There are many factors that contribute to the cost of a sewer cleanout installation. Our plumbers will assess your plumbing system and develop the best approach at an affordable and honest price.

While everyone’s house is different, there are some common factors to consider before installing a sewer cleanout:

  • Type of excavation; to access your home’s main line, a plumber needs to excavate the appropriate area to install a cleanout, this could mean an excavation of dirt in your yard or concrete. The material dictates what type of equipment we need to do the job.
  • Size and type of pipe; The size of the clean out depends on your sewage system’s current pipe size. We generally recommend a full-sized cleanout, which is 6-inches if your current pipe is 6 inches.
  • Depth of main sewer line; your home’s sewer line fluctuates in how deep it goes depending on the municipal sewer system. If your sewer system is deep in the ground, it may raise costs in terms of time and labor.
  • Local and State Plumbing and Sewer code; depending on your city or village ordinances, there may be specifications that sewer clean outs are required to meet.

While the process of installing a cleanout can seem daunting, at O’Bannon Plumbing & Sewer, our goal is to make any plumbing problem easier for you.

Our technicians provide a free job estimate on-site! Give us a call today at (773) 862-5112 and we can schedule an estimate for your cleanout installation.

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Common signs that you may have an issue with your sewer line

If you’re not sure whether you need a sewer cleanout or not, look out for these tell-tale signs that something isn’t flowing right in your plumbing:

  • Strong sewage smells around your drain, toilet, or sink
  • Water backed up in your toilet, shower, or sink, instead of draining away quickly
  • Gurgling noises coming from your drains
  • Standing water inside or outside of your home

These issues can indicate smaller issues like clogs or larger scale issues like a sewage backup. In such cases, a drain cleanout allows the plumber to locate the blockage or damaged pipe and clear it away without damaging excavation necessary!

Prevent future issues in your sewer system

The #1 recommended step for the care of your plumbing system is installing a cleanout. Older homes that rely on a septic tank take especially benefit from a cleanout. But even homes with a lateral sewer line connected to a city sewer will benefit from one.

Ultimately, our goal is to keep your sewer clean of any debris such as roots, paper products, and grease that can cause damage later on. We recommend surface level care such as refraining from flushing anything except human waste and toilet paper down the toilet and being careful what food particles go down the drains.

However, when a large-scale issue occurs, only a drain cleanout can reveal the blockages. Our experts are happy to service your system whether for annual maintenance or repairs.

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How O’Bannon Plumbing & Sewer Can Help Your Sewer System

At O’Bannon, we are committed to providing our customers with the best services at an affordable and honest cost. Our experts are experienced in all types of drain cleanouts and know what it takes to keep your sewer clean.

Let us provide you with a free estimate on your drain cleanout install today. Call our friendly staff at (773) 862-5112!

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