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3 Tips to Prevent Tree Roots From Damaging Sewer Lines August 15, 2018

Broadway, Crystal
3 Tips to Prevent Tree Roots From Damaging Sewer Lines, Crystal, Minnesota

Trees can make beautiful additions to your landscape, but when it comes to your sewer system, they can be nuisances. According to plumbers, their roots are naturally attracted to the water, nutrients, and oxygen flowing through the sewer lines. Once they make their way to the lines, they seek out cracks in the material and begin to grow inside the pipes, causing blockages and costly damage. If you have trees on your property, below are a few actions you can take to prevent this from becoming an issue. 

How Plumbers Recommend Keeping Tree Roots Away From Sewer Lines

1. Keep Trees at Least 10 Feet Away 

When adding trees to your property, they should always be at least ten feet away from the main sewer line. This way it will take much longer for the roots to reach the system. Also, if you have any currently within this range, consider having them removed — especially if they are fast growing — as it will be a constant battle keeping your lines intact. 

2. Only Add Slow-Growing Plants & Trees

plumber minneapolis mnStick to plants with slow-growing root systems. Plumbers consider Amur and Paperback Maples, Serviceberry, Fringetree, Cypress, and Flowering Dogwood trees “sewer safe.” Examples of fast-growing trees include Sycamore, Cottonwood, Sweetgum, and River Birch species. 

3. Regularly Water Trees

If you have trees located close to your home’s sewer line or the species is known to have an invasive root system, you can prevent the roots from spreading by regularly watering the plant. This will help to prevent dehydration and keep the roots from expanding further out into the soil. Additionally, consider adding mulch layers above the soil to help hold in moisture and nutrients. 


While prevention is key, it is still recommended to have regular sewer inspections if you have trees growing in close approximation to lines. At Benjamin Franklin Plumbing, their expert plumbers provide comprehensive plumbing services to the Minneapolis, MN, region, including sewer leak detection and repairs. Call (612) 217-7761 to schedule an appointment and visit their website to learn more about their services.

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