What Are The Dangers Of A Sewer Leak?

Your sewer line is responsible for carrying wastewater away from your home. Problems with the sewer line don't occur too often. That's why many people aren't quick to detect them. 

Signs such as an unpleasant sewer odor or a soggy lawn shouldn't be ignored. They are an indication that there's a crack somewhere along your sewer line. Timely repairs can make all the difference if you want to avoid expensive problems in the future. 

But a leaking sewer line doesn't just waste your money. It also exposes you to the following health hazards.

Poisonous Sewer Gas

When natural human waste breaks down, it releases dangerous sewer gas. Sewer gas often consists of ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, methane, and carbon dioxide. 

Hydrogen sulfide has a distinctive rotten egg smell and can severely affect human health. Exposure to low concentrations of hydrogen sulfide can result in eye irritation, shortness of breath, and sore throat. High concentrations of this gas can lead to poor memory, dizziness, and loss of appetite.

Methane is highly flammable and can cause serious fire hazards. High methane concentrations can reduce oxygen levels in a room, causing you to experience dizziness, headaches, nausea, or even shortness of breath. 

A combination of these dangerous gases can have serious detrimental effects that you might not even see coming. Usually, these gases appear due to poor maintenance or failure to repair sewer issues as soon as they appear.

Inform your plumber immediately if you notice foul smells in your home, even when you don't understand where they're coming from. They can inspect your sewer system to unmask the cause of sewer odors and perform specialized repairs to prevent a recurrence in the future.

Contaminated Water Supply 

Cracked pipes are often the leading cause of sewer leaks. When sewage seeps into the ground, it can contaminate your water supply.  Drinking sewage-contaminated water can cause serious gastrointestinal problems. It can also lead to developmental problems, dehydration, or even lifelong health issues. 

Contaminated water often contains protozoans such as cryptosporidium. And according to experts, cryptosporidium can cause symptoms like nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Unfortunately, many homeowners might not be aware of the contamination until it's too late. Ensure that your plumber regularly tests your home's water quality to ensure your family's safety.

If you suspect there's a sewer leak in your home, get in touch with a plumber right away to get the sewer line fixed.  Doing so will save you from spending money on treating conditions due to leaky sewer lines.