Why You Shouldn’t Use Over-The-Counter Drain Cleaners

Clogged pipes may seem like something you can tackle on your own, but don’t be fooled; you may be doing more harm than good. We understand the convenience of going to the store and picking up some quick-fix cleaning products — we’ve all been suckers for it at one point or another! However, we urge you to seek professional service to unclog your pipes if you really want to get the job done. What’s wrong with over the counter drain cleaners? Here are the reasons:

They Can Damage Your Pipes

Drain cleaners designed to clear your pipes can actually damage them? Yes, it’s more than possible. Most liquid cleaners are basic on the pH scale, which means the alkaline liquids eat away at substances getting in the way of water flow. They are admittedly great at clearing blockages and buildups, but if you repeatedly use these cleaners over time, they will start to corrode your pipes because of how basic they are. Store-bought cleaning solutions are great if you’re in a pinch, but you will start to see their negative effects after prolonged use.

They Are Toxic

Because these cleaners are so basic, they are extremely dangerous and volatile. You’ll want to avoid coming in contact with any cleaners that you may use as they can irritate or even seriously harm any part of your body they touch. They can cause burnt skin, eye pain, or even shortness of breath, in some cases. On top of that, whatever you do, do not mix these cleaners with anything, including other cleaners, as the mixture can emit deadly gases. As effective as drain cleaners are, it’s not worth using them given the serious threats that they pose.

They Are Only A Short Term Solution

Yeah, you can use them in emergency situations, but over-the-counter drain cleaners are more remedies than an actual solution to the problem. Your water flow may go unobstructed for the time being, but that won’t stop subsequent buildups from causing issues again. If you must tackle a clogged drain by yourself, you should use a drain snake and pull the gunk out of your drain instead of flushing it down with liquid solution. Our number one suggestion is to hire a drain cleaning specialist, like the ones at All County Sewer, to diagnose the problem with your pipes; they can use professional-grade tools to clear the blockage and keep your pipes safe.

You should avoid buying over the counter drain cleaners for the aforementioned reasons and get in touch with a team of professionals if you have any issues. If you’re ready to make a call, please consider calling All County Sewer & Drain to get everything working again!

Top 4 Signs Of A Sewage Backup

As important as it is to look out for seasonal problems with your pipes, as we discussed in last month’s blog, it’s equally imperative to look out for problems that can arise year-round too! One of those problems is sewage backups — a buildup of waste that forms in your pipes and impedes water flow. If you’re not sure of any warning signs of a sewage backup, keep reading!

Foul Odor

If your house smells like sewage, then there’s probably sewage in your pipes! A foul odor coming from your drain(s) is the simplest way to detect a sewage backup. So if something smells amiss, there is more than likely a blockage that needs clearing. Sometimes human instinct prevails over anything else! 

Slow Draining

Another obvious sign of accumulated sewage is slow draining in one or several appliances in your house. If water is not draining properly in your sink, toilet, and/or shower, a clogged pipe is a prime suspect. Clogged drains usually begin towards the bottom of your house, so if you notice more and more drains starting to clog from the bottom up, you should have a good idea of what the issue is.


If the water around your drains or in your toilet bubbles, that is a major red flag. Air bubbles in your appliances are a common sign of obstructed waterflow in your pipes, and if you neglect the issue, the sewage will continue to build up and create an even bigger problem when you do take action against it. It is better to be proactive in these situations than passive. 

Visible Sewage

In some rarer cases, you can actually see sewage come up from your drains. If you see some dark, smelly, sludgy material in your sink or bathtub, you probably already know what your problem is. Be sure to also check your cleanout pipes for sewage; cleanout pipes are usually found in your basement or outside your house that allows access to your sewer line. If there’s a sewage backup, wastewater will be forced through it. It’s crucial to investigate every last one of your suspicions! 

These are only just a few symptoms of a sewage backup in your plumbing system, as there are countless issues to look out for. If you notice anything abnormal, please feel free to contact the team at All County Sewer and Drain and ask us any of your questions. We’re always happy to help!

The Importance of Preventative Maintenance

We all call a repairperson whenever a problem arises in the home that is beyond our control. Some people hesitate to call for service as they don’t want to break the bank over one issue in the house or office. But what if you call for help before you notice a problem? Calling an expert for preventative maintenance is the perfect solution to preserve your pipes and save money! Here’s why you should consider hiring a specialist:

Catch Huge Problems Early

You may ask yourself: “Why should I hire a specialist if there’s nothing wrong with my pipes?” Well, calling before there’s a huge issue makes all the difference! If you don’t call someone to inspect your pipes, blockages or other problems can build up and fester over long periods. Neglecting to address these issues will only lead to bigger problems down the road, but the worst part is, you yourself will only notice something is wrong when it’s too late! When you hire a plumbing professional for regularly-scheduled maintenance, they will be able to spot the onset of an issue that may exacerbate. Preventative maintenance is just that — maintaining your plumbing system to prevent serious damage!

Save Money

You know what finding problems early means? More money kept in your pocket! Scheduling preventative maintenance is going to cost you less in the long run, even if it feels like you’re not paying for much in the short term. If a serious blockage forms or a pipe bursts, the repair costs are going to be astronomical. We know you don’t want it to ever reach that point, so when you call an expert, you’re ensuring your own funds and your property’s well-being. Why pay to fix a serious plumbing emergency when you can have someone inspect your pipes for significantly less money? 

Unmatched Service

We can talk all we want about what you should do, but now it’s time to take action! Today is the perfect day to schedule an appointment with your local drain and sewer cleaning experts for preventative maintenance. The best companies offer elite service options such as high pressure water jet cleaning and sewer inspections with state-of-the-art video cameras. Don’t resort to over the counter drain cleaning products or anything else of the sort, as they could damage your pipes. You’re going to want to hire a specialist to deal with anything drain- or sewer-related.

If you’re finally ready to hire a professional for preventative maintenance, be sure to call the premier specialist around! Get in touch with All County Sewer today at (800) 834-3102!

Simple Tips To Deal With a Sewer Backup Caused By Heavy Rain

The summer season is coming to an end and we are now entering storm season, with a lot of heavy rain coming in, especially these last couple of weeks. Unfortunately, the rainy season can bring with it a plethora of problems for homeowners, including a sewer backup. We assume you want to avoid sewer backups caused by heavy rain! By understanding the cause for these backups, you can put together a plan to prevent them from occurring or to lessen their severity. No matter how at risk your property is (or isn’t), it is always best to be prepared!

Why Do Heavy Rains Cause Sewer Backups?

The first thing is to familiarize yourself with why heavy rain causes sewer backups in the first place. While heavy rain alone may be enough to overwhelm your sewer system, rain mixed with other factors on or near your property can contribute to the situation. For example, if you live near grassy areas that were recently paved or vacant land under development, rain and wind can sweep debris from these areas onto your property. This debris can get caught in the area of your drain field, which needs to remain clear so that rainwater can flow away from your home. A clogged drain field can back up your sewer pipes and wreak havoc on your sewer system.

Sewer Backups Are More Than Annoying, They’re Hazardous

It is also essential to realize that sewage waste is made up of hazardous gases, which can harm your family and pets if it overflows in your home. Sewer backups caused by heavy rains have the additional danger of bringing other hazardous materials into your home that seeped into your sewer system due to the storm. Flooding can also cause a pilot light to go out on a nearby appliance, which causes gas to leak in the air; if you  smell gas after flooding or a heavy storm, be sure to contact a professional immediately. 

What Can You Do To Prevent Sewer Backups Due to Heavy Rain?

So how do you prevent these damaging backups from happening? An important precaution is having a professional install a backwater check valve. Backwater check valves keep water from flowing backwards, thus preventing a sewer backup from the public system. Keep in mind that these backwater check valves need to be cleaned at least twice per year, which can be done by you or by a professional. If you already have a backwater check valve, make sure it is clean and working properly.

If the backup is caused by city sewer water, then there probably isn’t much you can do to prevent the issue aside from waiting it out. As the rain ends, the water level will return to normal, allowing the water in your home to drain. However, you can take action to protect your home and family from hazards, even if a backup does occur. Secure trap plugs tightly so they can filter any sludge or debris from floodwaters that may pour into your home.

As we move deeper into the stormy season, these are some great tips to help you deal with any sewer backups caused by heavy rain. If you have any further questions or require assistance dealing with a backup, be sure to contact All County Sewer & Drain today at (800) 834-3102!

Why Sewer Line Repairs Are Important

Sewer pipe repair is not a minor issue, unfortunately, it is a common occurrence that property owners face. Your sewer line in particular is responsible for moving things like grease, soap, etc. through your plumbing system. So, it can be quite the dilemma if you have a broken or leaking sewer line as you will want to have that fixed as soon as possible. Not only is it good for convenience, but it is critical for your safety as well. Let’s take a look at some additional reasons why sewer line repairs are so important.

Sewer Lines Stop Slow Drains

Typically, when you have a clog in your sewer line, it causes your drain to slow down. Now, this may not completely block the flow of water, but it will cause some delays where you may need to wait a few minutes for your shower or sink drains to empty. Plus, the excess water can make your home much more appealing to moisture-loving pests. However by repairing your sewer line, your pipes will be clear and as quickly as water comes out of the faucet, it will then go down the drain.

Prevents Bad Smells

If you start smelling sewage in your bathroom, then you likely have a major clog in your sewer line as the pooling water from your tub, toilet, and sink could be creating that nasty odor. However, once you repair your sewer line, you will not have to worry about a sewage smell in your bathroom. So, rather than pooling near the drains, the water will travel through the plumbing system as it’s intended to, thus sending away the smell. It is also important to be aware of the fact that this can happen in your kitchen as well. As food particles travel down the kitchen, they can also create a foul odor if a clog occurs. 

Keeps The Family Safe

Sewer lines also transport toxic waste which can be hazardous to your health. If you are having sewer issues that are so bad that toxic water is backing up in your bathroom or your yard, your health is at risk. Sewage water contains parasites and fungi along with various bacteria. So, if you or a loved one is exposed to sewage water, it could lead to a number of issues. Some of the most common symptoms of this kind of exposure include diarrhea, cramps, and headaches. If you wait too long to repair your sewer line, you will risk worsening the issue. To protect your family from the sewage, you can look to get an emergency sewer repair. 

As you can see, your sewer line is an integral part of your plumbing system and it is essential to ensure that it is always functioning properly. If you are having some issues with your sewer line or have any additional questions, feel free to call All County Sewer & Drain at (800) 834-3102!