How to Kill Drain Pipe Roots

Written by andrea stein
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How to Kill Drain Pipe Roots
A simple root cleaner solution and root cutters can kill drain pipe roots. (Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Trees roots can crack through and enter pipes while seeking water, clogging lines and destroying your plumbing system. Hiring a professional service to kill drain pipe roots can be costly. Save money by killing the roots yourself with the help of a root removal cleaner.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Root cleaner powder
  • Water
  • Small root cutter
  • Large root cutter

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Instructions

    Killing Drain Pipe Roots

  1. 1

    Find the backup water pump for your home, which should be outside the house and on your premises. Take the cap off the water pump.

  2. 2

    Pour a foaming root cleaner powder, according to the manufacturer's instructions, into the water pump. Fill a gallon jug full of standard tap water. Pour the water into the water pump immediately, following the root cleaner powder application. Pour 2 more gallons of water into the pump.

  3. 3

    Place the cap back on the water pump. The root cleaner solution should clear out the majority or all of the roots. Allow the treatment six hours to work its way through the clogged drain.

  4. 4

    Cut out any roots remaining after the root cleaner treatment, using a small root cutter. Use a large root cutter to slice through any roots too large for the small cutter.

  5. 5

    Treat any roots that cannot be cut with cutters with a copper sulphate solution, according to the manufacturer's instructions. Allow the copper sulphate at least two weeks to soften the roots, then attempt to cut them with a small root cutter. Replace the cap on the water tap immediately after pouring water into the water pump to prevent root cleaner foam from spilling out of the pump.

Tips and warnings

  • Replace the cap on the water tap immediately after pouring water into the water pump to prevent root cleaner foam from spilling out of the pump.
  • Always wear safety gloves when dealing with harmful chemicals to avoid injury.

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