Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Our Biggest Enemy

Tree Roots! 

I am sure some of you remember me mentioning a basement problem we have been having since we moved into our paradise 3 1/2 years ago.  Our basement likes to flood.  With no warning either.  The first year I moved in, I had to have the drain snaked about 3 times.  I just figured it was because it was an old home and nobody maintained the drain for years.  Well, that was part of the problem.

Then, in 2009, we got 2 backups in less than 2 months.  We were told at that point that a camera needed to be put down the drain to see what the issue was.  Lets face it, the money just wasn't there.  We decided to try root killer all winter to save a little cash. 

You would of thought this would of brought us good luck.

Then, a month ago, Clint came home to find our entire basement filled with about a half inch of water.  We called out the plumbers again.  This time, we listened and had them out with the camera.  Good news, the pipes were ok.  Bad news, the problem was going to keep happening if we didn't have an outside drain installed.  

$2,000 later (Yes, you read that right), our front lawn went from looking like this...

To this....

I have to be honest, we were both pretty scared about spending the money on this.  I mean, who happens to have $2,000 extra sitting around for something like this?  But we knew it would be worth it to not live in fear anymore about our belongings soaked.  Plus, the pipes could of collapsed, which could of cost us about $10,000 to repair.

Things We Learned:
1. Insurance does not cover this.  They consider it "maintenance", and therefore, it's your problem.
2. Drains should be snaked once a year.  Don't wait for a back up to happen.
3. Even cutting down trees wont stop roots from entering.  Did you know roots can still live up to 10 years after the tree is cut down?

So fellow bloggers, do not neglect your drains!

*Thanks to Paul C. Scott & Sons Plumbing for their excellent help and professional manner.  Anyone living in the Southeastern Michigan area, this is the company I would call for your plumbing needs!


LizzieBeth said...

yowza. 2,00 clams?

Well, lesson learned, and hopefully you won't need to fix the problem again!


MeredithDuck said...

We need to have the same thing done. We have clay pipes and the roots just love to break right through. We haven't had a flood yet (KNOCK ON WOOD!) and we have the pipes snaked every year in the early spring, but we know its coming. And when we finally have it fixed we can feel comfortable about semi finishing the basement.

Argh. I don't wanna.

Kim at Yellow Brick Home said...

So sad! But at least you've gotten to the "root" of the problem. Har-har!

Scientific Housewife said...

Oh, you poor thing! Sorry this happened!

Amanda @ Little House on the Corner said...

YIKES!! As painful as it was on the pocketbook, at least preventative action is cheaper than fixing it after something disastrous happens. Thanks for sharing this learning experience with us!

Mrs. Chic said...

I know what your going though! Whne we first moved in we had several backups and prayed it was the citys issue - nope it was ours. We had to dig a huge hole in our backayard to find our cleanout (thankfully we have one) which sounds like what you just had installed.

We had it snaked out, and havn't had any problems since, crosses fingers. I plumber and city think the cause were a few tree roots bt mostly becasue our house was emtpy for a long time....yup eww left over stuff! :(

I'm glad you were able to get the problem fixed!!! It's so stressfull and more so for you since you had water in the basement.

alanna rose said...

Oy, no fun.

Just be glad the roots only caused issues with the pipes, and not with your foundation.

elizabeth said...

ouch!!! I hear you though -something always unexpected has to pop up at the most un-welcome time -
and I didn't know that about the tree roots...hmmmm
hope you had a good weekend

Nichole@40daysof said...

I had no idea about the tree roots living for so long. Around here they make people install something called a "french drain" and I've heard estimates near $10,000. $2,000 is bad enough, 10 would put me in the fetal position!

Oonafey said...

We had this same problem, but our backed up into the kitchen sink! It got so bad, I had to do the dishes in the laundry sinks in the basement. It's a good thing Mr. is a Renaissance Man or else we would have had to shell out the big bucks too!

liz @ bon temps beignet said...

Oh my gosh, I feel your pain. We had to tear out all of our plumbing throughout the ENTIRE house. We stupidly decided not to get a pipe inspection before we bought our house because the inspector said they should be fine. Yea. Right.

Our front yard looked A LOT like yours...

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