The plumbing stack, also called the drain waste vent system (DWV), is the piping designed to remove waste water from your home.
Usually made from PVC or cast iron, it connects the plumbing fixtures inside your home to the public sewer or to a septic tank that sits on or near your property.
Most professionals advise to have the main drain cleaned and cabled once a year to prevent backups. You can visually inspect the vertical stack for signs of leaks or cracks.
It is difficult to inspect the drain lines hidden inside walls or below ground without the use of a special camera. Luckily, there are many professional companies that provide this service and it is always recommended to have a sewer lateral inspection before purchasing a home.
The subterranean sewer lines in St. Louis City and St. Louis County are largely antiquated and made of clay that can become full of tree roots over time. This can cause blockages and other issues for residents.
What to do if you suspect a sewer lateral problem in your home?
First of all, don’t panic! Many counties have sewer lateral programs to help home owners with the cost of the repairs. The sewer line can fail or get blocked up for many reasons and depending on these reasons you could get some or all of the costs for repairs covered. The homeowner is typically responsible for paying for the diagnosis (such as a sewer lateral inspection) and then has to file paperwork to get the ball rolling.
You can get details of different St. Louis municipalities sewer lateral programs from Sewer Pros. There will be details on how to apply and what costs are covered.