Signs of Tree Roots in Pipes – And What to Do Next

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Maintaining a healthy plumbing system is vital for the smooth functioning of your Melbourne home. However, one common and often overlooked issue that can wreak havoc on your pipes is tree roots infiltrating your plumbing system. As picturesque as Melbourne’s tree-lined streets and lush gardens are, the root systems of these trees can sometimes find their way into your pipes, causing blockages and potential damage. In this article, we’ll explore the signs of tree roots in pipes and provide you with valuable insights on what to do next to prevent and address this issue.

Signs of Tree Roots in Pipes

  1. Slow Drains and Gurgling Noises: One of the earliest signs of tree roots in your pipes is a noticeable decrease in drainage speed. If you find that water is taking longer than usual to drain from sinks, showers, or toilets, it could indicate that tree roots are obstructing the flow. Additionally, if you hear gurgling or bubbling noises when water is draining, it might be a sign that roots are causing air pockets in your pipes.
  2. Frequent Clogs: Do you find yourself dealing with recurrent clogs despite your best efforts to clear them? Persistent blockages could be a red flag that tree roots have made their way into your pipes. These roots can catch debris and cause backups, leading to frustrating and unsanitary conditions.
  3. Unpleasant Odours: The presence of tree roots in your pipes can create a breeding ground for trapped debris and wastewater. Over time, this stagnant mixture can emit foul odours that waft back into your home, indicating a potential issue with your plumbing system.
  4. Fluctuating Water Levels in Toilets: If you notice that the water levels in your toilet bowl are unpredictable – sometimes too high and sometimes too low – it could be due to tree roots obstructing the proper flow of water.

What to Do Next

  1. Consult a Professional Plumber: If you suspect or observe any of the signs mentioned above, it’s crucial to contact a licensed plumber in Melbourne with experience in diagnosing and addressing tree root intrusion. A professional plumber will conduct a thorough inspection using specialized tools and techniques to assess the extent of the issue.
  2. Hydro Jetting: Hydro jetting is an effective method used by plumbers to remove tree roots from pipes. This process involves using a high-pressure water jet to dislodge and clear away the roots, restoring proper water flow.
  3. Pipe Repairs or Replacement: In severe cases where tree roots have caused significant damage to your pipes, your plumber may recommend pipe repairs or replacement. Modern trenchless technologies allow for minimally invasive solutions, reducing the disruption to your property.
  4. Preventive Measures: Consider planting trees and shrubs away from your plumbing lines to prevent future tree root intrusion. Regular maintenance, such as root barrier installations and periodic plumbing inspections, can also help keep your pipes root-free.


As a Melbourne homeowner, it’s important to be vigilant about the signs of tree roots in your pipes and take proactive measures to address the issue promptly. With the help of a qualified plumber, you can ensure the health and longevity of your plumbing system, allowing you to enjoy a comfortable and hassle-free living environment amidst the beauty of Melbourne’s green landscapes. If you suspect tree root intrusion or require expert plumbing assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team of experienced plumbers who are dedicated to serving the Melbourne community with reliable and efficient plumbing solutions.

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