Sewage Backup in Memphis, TN

There may be signs that your sewer is about to back up, but sometimes, the onslaught of raw sewage creeping out your drains and seeping onto your floors happens unexpectedly. In either case, a sewage backup isn’t pretty. In fact, it turns your home into a cesspit, ruining your floors, carpet, and your shoes as you do your best to stop the flow of dirty water spewing out your toilet, sink, and shower.

Sewage backup happens to the best of us, but the key is having a reliable Memphis plumber in your back pocket for such occasions. Because this particular disaster calls for a quick response, you need a crew that’s known for acting fast. That’s Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Memphis. Our dedicated team will swoop in to make this catastrophe a little more bearable while making sure it doesn’t happen again.

Whether you, the property owner, are dealing with a sewer backup now or are thinking ahead for the future, give our knowledgeable customer service team a call.

When To Call for Sewage Backup Services in Memphis

If you have a sewage backup, you’re likely left wondering why it happened in the first place. Knowing what causes your sewer to back up can help you prevent it from happening in the future, so before we dive into exactly how we can help you during this disaster, let’s take a moment to go over the causes of sewage backup.

In Memphis, and particularly East Memphis, where there are many old homes built in the early 1900s, backups are quite common. This is not only because the sewer lines are nearing the end of their lifespan but also because tree root invasion is incredibly common. If you live in any other part of the city, you’re still at risk for a backup, but you may experience it for a different reason.

A few of the most common causes of sewage backup are:

Tree Root Invasion

If you live in a home with a back or front yard, there’s a good chance you have a few nearby trees. Likely, your sewer lateral will run through one of these areas, leading out into the municipal sewer system. Large trees, such as the ones found in the yards of older homes, may have grown over the last century directly on top of where your home’s sewer line was installed. This is highly problematic because, as these trees grow, so do their roots. Eventually, roots will cause pipes to crack, and they will infiltrate your pipes before spreading new roots that grow and eventually form a blockage. Tree root invasion is one of the most common plumbing issues homes experience.

Old Sewer Lines

Due to the many old homes found in East Memphis and beyond, old sewer lines are another leading cause of plumbing problems in the city. Every pipe has its limit, and if your home is approaching the 80 to 100-year mark, you’ll likely need a complete sewer line replacement due to corrosion, clogs, cracks, and buildup that has accumulated over the years.

Improper Maintenance / Care

If you live in a modern building, you likely won’t have to worry about tree root invasion or old sewer lines causing sewage backup. Homeowners, however, may not be in the clear completely. If you do not care for your sewer drains, they will revolt in the form of stubborn clogs, which will eventually lead to a backup. From flushing feminine hygiene products and facial tissue to paper towels and cotton balls, there are many things that should not make their way down your drain pipes other than toilet paper. On top of improper care, neglecting regular maintenance, such as drain cleaning, can also result in your sewage backing up.

Other Causes of Sewage Backup

  • Heavy rains. Excess rainfall can cause the city sewer to overflow and force sewer water back into your home.
  • Sump pump failure. A full sump basin can cause water to flow into the sanitary sewer and back up into the home.
  • Public sewer flooding. Whether from extreme weather or a burst pipe, if the public sewer floods, you’ll likely experience a backup.
  • Broken backwater valve. Backwater valves prevent sewage from flowing back into your drains. If the valve is broken, when you have a clog, sewage will be forced backward and out of your drain pipe.
  • Blockages from grease traps. Grease traps are designed to stop grease from entering your drain line. If they are full, grease will seep out and cause a blockage in your pipe.

Our Sewer Backup Services

Now that you know what causes sewage backup, how can we help? At Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Memphis, we have plenty of experience in getting down and dirty with your sewers. Offering a comprehensive range of services to inspect, clean, repair, and replace your drain and sanitary sewer lines, whatever level of care and attention your unique system needs, we’ll be sure it gets it. Here’s a peek at what you can expect when you call us after your sewer pipe backup.


There’s no other way to determine the kind of attention your sewer line needs unless we take a look inside your pipes. Doing this will require specialized equipment, including a CCTV video camera that we’ll slide through your drains and sewer to find out what’s wrong. Capturing footage as it goes, we’ll play it back to determine the exact position of the clog, root, or damage within your pipes.

HydroScrub® Jetting

There’s a good chance that your sewer is backed up because your pipes are clogged. If so, we’ll need to perform a little pipe cleanup. While using a drain auger can help remove larger clumps of debris, this special drain cleaning method allows us to polish the inside of your pipes to clear them of all buildup—whether it’s feminine products or solid materials causing the problem.

Trenchless Pipe Repair

We offer two different methods of trenchless sewer repair. If, during the inspection, we find that your pipes are cracked or have small holes, we’ll perform a trenchless method to repair them. The two we offer are called Pipe Relining and Hydraulic Pipe Bursting and do not require us to excavate or jackhammer the concrete slab under your home. This type of sewer backup repair will not displace you from your home and will only take a few hours to complete.

Sewer Line Replacement

In the case that you live in an old home with tree root invasion or old pipes, we’ll likely recommend a complete sewer line replacement if your sewage backup has occurred from severely damaged pipes. Traditional sewer line replacement involves excavation, but we aim to cause minimal disturbance to your routines. Our experienced team will always be courteous of your property, time, and family and will work diligently to have your new sewer system running as soon as possible without compromising quality workmanship.

Why Mr. Rooter Plumbing Is The Easy Choice For Your Tough Sewage Backup

A sewage backup in Memphis isn’t something you want an inexperienced plumber dealing with. Because it can be caused by factors such as tree roots, old pipes, corrosion, and other serious conditions, the correct diagnosis of the state of your sewer pipe is key to choosing the correct solution. That’s why going with an experienced team like Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Memphis is so important for this particular type of service, not to mention other small and large-scale plumbing issues such as water line repairs, leaking pipes, and water heater repair and replacements.

Along with our ample experience, we offer upfront, flat-rate pricing and will arrive on time and in uniform, ready to get to work. Call today to learn more about how we can help solve a wide variety of plumbing problems in your home.

FAQs About Memphis Sewer Backup Services

How Do I Know If My Sewage Is Backed Up?

If your sewage water is backed up, there’s a good chance you’ll know it. With that said, there are some subtle signs of sewage backup your sewer pipes will give you before it actually spills out of your taps, shower, and toilet. These include:

  • Foul odors in your sink, shower, and toilet
  • Gurgling noises
  • Air bubbles in the toilet
  • Slow drains
  • Standing pools of water
  • Drain flies
  • Basement flooding
  • Wetness around floor drains
  • Lush spots in your yard

What Does Backed-Up Sewage Look Like?

Backed-up sewage doesn’t always look the way you think it would. While it certainly does take the form of waste matter sometimes, other times it comes up as brown or black water. There may be bits and pieces of debris and human waste floating in murky water in your sink or shower and, if the backup is bad enough, on your bathroom or kitchen floor.

Can Sewage Come Up Through the Sink?

It sure can. Sewage can come up through your kitchen sink, bathroom sink, washing machine drains, shower, toilet, and out of any other drain in your home. This is because your wastewater lines are connected to your main sewer line. This means that if you experience a drain clog down in your main sewer line, you’ll likely have sewage backup through many of your drains. Of course, this poses a huge health hazard as the cleanup process of harmful bacteria isn’t always easy and will require special materials such as eye protection and chlorine bleach.

Does My Insurance Company Cover a Sewer Backup Repair?

Insurance policies vary. Therefore, it is worth it for you to double-check the details in your policy and, if applicable, consult your insurance agent for more information and clarification. From our knowledge, most policies cover some of the resulting water damage, but initial plumbing repair jobs are not always covered.

Deal With Sewage Backup Fast By Calling Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Memphis

Whether sewage is seeping onto your floors at this moment while you hurriedly search for the number of a reputable plumber or if you’re taking a more proactive approach for the future, we’re glad you’re here! Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Memphis can help. Our qualified plumbing professionals will help you make sure sewage backup doesn’t happen again in your home.

With our wide service offering of repair, replacement, and maintenance jobs, we’ll not only fix your pipes, but we’ll also help you maintain them with a yearly inspection. Whether you need help with your sewage backup in Memphis or require plumbing installation and replacements, contact us today to learn more or schedule service fast.

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