Signs You Have a Problem With Your Main Sewer Line

When you are experiencing problems with your main sewer line, you may notice some warning signs around the house. If you are experiencing any of the following problems in your home, call 3 Mountains Plumbing.

Warning Signs

  • Sewage backup and blockagesSewage backups can happen every now and then, but if sewage backs up every time you flush the toilet, the problem could be your main sewer line. All your home’s drains rely on the main line in order to drain properly. If you start experience blockages in more than one drain, you should call a 3 Mountains professional. 
  • Foul odors. Your plumbing should never be stinky. If it’s emitting an unpleasant odor, you should have your system examined.
  • Mold and mildew should be addressed immediately, as they can spread rapidly. A crack in your sewer line can leak water and promote their growth, so you should call a professional as soon as possible.
  • Slow drainage. Slow drains are a common plumbing problem, and most issues can be easily fixed. When these methods don’t work, however, it could mean that you have a severe clog deeper in your sewer line.
  • Random lush spots in your yard. Have you noticed spots in your yard that are extra green and lush? If so, it could be from a crack in your main line. Sewage is a great fertilizer, so it’s likely a leak directly below.
  • Pests. Rodents and critters can fit through cracks in your sewer line with ease. From there, they can make it into the rest of your plumbing system and other areas in your home.
  • Foundation damage. Did you know that a problem with your line can cause structural damage in your home? If left untreated, leaking water can cause cracks and even sinkholes in your foundation.

How 3 Mountains Can Help

Once we determine the cause of your sewer issue, we will provide you with a fixed price quote and a list of your repair and replacement options. According to city plumbing codes, before any repairs or replacements are made on your sewer are completed, we will pull a permit and check with the city to ensure we are aware of the exact location of your sewer system. Small cracks or leaks in your sewer line or breakage due to an accident can often be repaired by replacing a small section of the sewer line.

In the case of corrosion, tree roots or improper pitch, a complete sewer line replacement may be necessary. Regardless of is your sewer line requires repair or replacement we will need to excavate to gain access to the sewer line and will have the repair or replacement inspected as necessary before filling in the trench.

If you suspect that something is wrong with your main sewer line, call 3 Mountains Plumbing and schedule your service today! 


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Benefits of Drain Cleaning

Your drain and sewer system is one of the most used, yet most overlooked systems in your home. Think about how many times a day you use them- we certainly put them to work! Every time you take a shower, flush the toilet, wash the dishes or do a load of laundry, you are using your drains. Because we use them so frequently, they are prone to clogs and buildup. To keep your drains clean and clear of obstruction, 3 Mountains Plumbing is ready to help.

Signs You Need Drain Cleaning

Clogs can be a major inconvenience if they are able to escalate and worsen. Here are some signs to watch out for that signal you need cleaning in your home:

  • Slow drains. If you’re having trouble with a sink, you may have a clog. If several water fixtures won’t drain properly, then you most likely have one somewhere in your sewer line. A thorough drain cleaning with hot water and a mild detergent, or vinegar and baking soda may work, but if flushing each drain does nothing, then it’s time to call a plumber.
  • Pests. Rats and bugs are never a good thing, but if your home is visited by unwelcome pests, they may be coming from a crack somewhere in the sewer line. Cockroaches and rats can squeeze through even the smallest of gaps. 
  • Sky-high water bills. If it seems like your utility bills are higher than usual, the culprit could be a hidden leak. No matter how small the leak is, a camera inspection will be able to accurately detect the source.
  • Sewage backup. Sewage should go down your pipes, but if it winds up going the opposite direction, you’ll want to call a plumber immediately. If it appears that the sewage only backs up out of one drain, then it’s most likely isolated. If it seems like sewage backs up every time you flush a toilet or use a sink, then the problem may be much deeper in your sewer line.
  • Foul odors. You shouldn’t smell sewage in or around your home. If you can, then there’s probably a crack somewhere in the sewer line. Your plumbing should be sealed tight, but sewer gases can escape through cracks. A camera inspection will be quick to find where foul odors are coming from.
  • Mold and mildew. If you smell something foul and musty, call a plumber immediately. Not only is mold toxic for your health, it needs excessive moisture to grow. If there’s mold growing in your home, there’s usually a leak that’s causing it.

How 3 Mountains Plumbing Can Help

We offer drain cleaning services that can help you eliminate drain problems that you may be experiencing in your home. We offer:

  • Video Camera Inspection. We use state of the art drain-imaging tools to get a real-time look at the inside of your drains. This video unit will allow us to see exactly what is causing the clog to develop and give us the information needed to provide you with an accurate quote.
  • Drain Snake Services. A snake is a power way to clear even the toughest of clogs and roots mucking up your pipes. Using chemicals, rented snakes and other methods can severely damage your drains, leading to an even bigger issue. We will use a snake to grab onto the mass of the clog and pull it out through the opening of your drain. We will repeat the drain snake procedure until the clog has been entirely removed and water is flowing through your drains once again.

If you are experiencing drain issues, call 3 Mountains Plumbing today and schedule your drain cleaning service!

Signs You Need Sewer Repair

A broken sewer line can cause a range of unpleasant problems throughout your home. Your sewer carries waste water away from your home to keep your home clean and sanitary, so it’s important for the system to be working properly at all times. If you are experiencing the following issues in your home or on your property, 3 Mountains Plumbing can help.

Signs Of A Sewer Problem

  • An unpleasant odor. If any area in or around your home smells bad, there could be sewage leaking somewhere along your sewer line. In some cases, it may only smell in the direct area where the pipe is leaking. If you’re experiencing an unpleasant scent on a wider scale, it could mean a bigger leak throughout your property.
  • Slow drainage or backups. If your sinks, bathtubs, showers, and toilets are draining slowly or backing up, it may be a sign that they need sewer repair. Tree roots, animals, and ground shifts can damage nearby pipes, resulting in a crack or blockage. This is different from a normal clog because the pipe itself is actually damaged and will need to be repaired or replaced.
  • Pooling water on your property. It’s not uncommon for water to be present in your yard after a heavy storm, but if water pools frequently or for long periods of time you should call a professional. This usually happens in places where the sewer pipe runs close to the surface. If the water smells bad, then you can be sure it’s sewage.
  • Bugs and critters. We might think sewage is disgusting, but bugs live off it — and critters like rats live off bugs. So if you notice an increase in creepy crawlies and vermin around your house and yard, chances are you have a problem with your sewer line.
  • Patches of lush greenery. To put it simply, the nutrients in the sewage feeds plants, shrubs and trees just as fertilizer would. If you have one or more patches of lush greenery it’s a sign that your sewer pipe is damaged. The reason you’re not seeing pooling water might be because the pipe is located deep below the ground so the water doesn’t rise all the way to the surface.

Why Choose 3 Mountains Plumbing?

If you notice any of these signs in your home or around your yard, give us a call. Our trained and certified plumbers can treat the following problems with your sewer:

  • Slow Drains
  • Backed Up Sewage
  • Tree Root Infiltration
  • Sewer Line Breakage
  • Corrosion
  • Breakage

Sewer problems can be a major disruption in your home, so it’s best to repair them as early as possible. If you suspect that your system is in need of repair, call 3 Mountains Plumbing today! 

Eight Tips to Prevent Clogged Drains this Spring

Clogged drains are a common, yet incredibly annoying problem that most people have to deal with. Although clogs occur often, there are things that you can do in your home to reduce their chances of escalating. Here are eight tips to prevent clogged drains this spring:

What You Should and Shouldn’t Do

  1. Keep grease and oil out of your drains. Instead, you can pour it into a disposable container and throw it away in the garbage. Grease and oil harden once they get into your pipes, and can build up over time. Other debris can stick to it on their way down, which can quickly cause a clog.
  2. Use drain screens if you don’t already have them. Your drains regularly deal with soap, hair, dirt, and other debris that can cause problems in your plumbing system. A stopper will be able to filter these materials, while still allowing your wastewater to pass through.
  3. If you don’t have a garbage disposal, no food should be allowed down your drains. Accidents happen, and particles will find their way in.
  4. If you do have a garbage disposal, there are certain things that you shouldn’t put in. This includes peels and skins, coffee grounds, and eggshells to name a few. Not only can they damage your disposal, they can stick to the sides of your pipes and cause blockages.
  5. Whenever you use your garbage disposal, you should have a steady flow of cold water coming from the faucet. Contrary to popular belief, cool water is better than warm for flushing out debris. This will help to carry it all the way through your drainage system.
  6. Never flush anything (besides toilet paper) down the toilet. Paper towels, regular towels, or other materials are too heavy for your plumbing system to handle. They can easily cause clogs or backups, so it’s best to throw them in the trash.
  7. Every week or so, you can pour boiling water down your drain. This will help to flush away grease or debris that may have built up.
  8. The most important step of all is making sure that your plumbing fixtures get professional attention! Early detection is key in preventing major malfunctions down the road. At the first sign of an issue, call 3 Mountains Plumbing.

How 3 Mountains Plumbing Can Help

No matter where your clog is located, or how advanced it is, 3 Mountains Plumbing can fix it. Our trained and licensed professionals will be able to restore your plumbing to working condition. To help relieve your clogged drains, we offer:

  • Video Camera Inspection: We use state of the art drain-imaging tools to get a real-time look at the inside of your drains. This allows us to pinpoint the makeup and location of the clog so we can give you an honest and accurate quote.
  • Drain Snake Services: A professional drain snake is a powerful way to clear even the toughest of clogs. Harsh chemicals and DIY snaking can damage your pipes even further, so it’s best to leave clog removal to the professionals.

Keep your drains clog-free this spring by calling 3 Mountains Plumbing at the first sign of an issue. 

Precautions You Can Take to Prevent Basement Flooding

Basement flooding is quite common throughout the country. With the seasons switching from winter to spring, snowmelt and increased rain can cause water to leak into your basement or back up through your plumbing. Any house can be at risk, and water flooding can result in costly repairs due to water damage or mold and mildew growth. Spring may try to bring water into your home, but fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent basement flooding from happening.

Common Causes of Flooding

Before any water damage happens in your home or property, you should know the most common causes. Awareness can help you avoid any unfortunate or potentially dangerous situations in the future. The most common causes of basement flooding are:

  • Increase in rain or snowmelt
  • Leaks in your pipes or plumbing
  • Damaged, cracked or broken pipes
  • Toilet clogs and system backups
  • Frozen pipes
  • Unsealed basement walls and floors
  • Sewage backup

There are several factors that can cause flooding in your home, so it’s important that you know the dangers and how to prevent them from happening. When it comes to basement flooding, prevention is key.

Flooding Prevention

Any sort of water present, large or small scale, can cause damage to your home. Water in your home or basement can lead to serious damage, ruined belongings, and even health hazards for you and your family. If any water is left standing, mold growth can happen very quickly. At the first sign of any water present, you should call a professional immediately.

Sump Pump

If your home is prone to basement flooding, you should seriously consider a sump pump installation. A sump pump removes groundwater accumulation underneath your home and pushes it away from your home. Typically installed in your basement or crawlspace, sump pumps are extremely effective in preventing water accumulation. Because they run on electricity, you may want to consider a battery backup, so you continue to be protected in the event of an outage.

Ejector Pump

If your basement is finished and has a bathroom, it’s likely that you already have an ejector pump. Plumbing systems use gravity to their advantage, and if your bathroom is lower than your sewer line, it may need a little extra help. An ejector pump helps to carry waste to the sewer line, so it if malfunctions, you could end up with sewage in your basement. Ejector pumps also run on electricity, so a backup is important.

Now that you know how you can prevent basement flooding in your home, what are you waiting for? Call 3 Mountains Plumbing today! 

Portland Plumber: How to Winterize Your Home

2 Easy Ways to Winterize Your Plumbing Systems

Winters may not be particularly harsh in Portland and surrounding areas, but it is always important to be proactive by winterizing the plumbing systems in your home. It seems like common sense, but many people simply forget to take these small steps. There are a few simple things you can do to avoid common cold weather-related plumbing mishaps.

3 Mountains Plumbing suggests the following winterization tips:

1. Close and Insulate Crawl Space Vents

You may have noticed that your crawl space has small vents built into the foundation wall. The purpose of these vents is to help protect the pipes in your home by clearing out excess moisture. Closing these vents in addition to insulating exposed crawl space pipes during the colder months will help prevent precipitation from causing unnecessary damage.

2. Shut Off and Drain Hose Supply Lines

Doing any outdoor gardening in January? Of course not! Be sure to turn off your outside garden hose supply line, and remember to drain it. Don’t leave water in your pipes all winter. Weather conditions may cause leftover water in your pipes to expand and contract eventually wreaking havoc on your home’s plumbing system.

3 Mountains Plumbing says most emergency calls don’t happen during the freeze, but amidst the following thaw. Water switching to ice and back to water causes undue strain and duress on its surrounding pipe. These ongoing abrasions naturally lead to leaks and joint fractures.

Now that the holidays are almost over, it’s time to get focused and be proactive about winterizing your home plumbing systems.

Ask a Portland Plumber: How Do You Replace My Water Main Line?

Why Choose 3 Mountains Plumbing for Your Replacement

In Portland, homeowners are responsible for all pipe between the sidewalk water meter and the foundation of their homes. More pipe means more room for water service failure. Fortunately 3 Mountains Plumbing are expert water main line replacement professionals serving the greater Portland metro area. 3 Mountains Plumbing provides the following for their clients:

  • 10-year labor and materials warranty
  • Certified polyethylene Wirsbo pipe installers
  • Same day service
  • The 3 Mountains Plumbing Guarantee
  • A delightful plumbing experience!

The Pipe

3 Mountains Plumbing will use tried and true polyethylene Wirsbo pipe. With its 10-year labor and materials warrantee, plus 25-year pipe and fittings warrantee, Wirsbo, made by Uponor, is the best choice.

Not convinced? Check out the benefits of using Wirsbo for your Portland water service replacement in this previously written blog post.

The Installation

3 Mountains Plumbing uses directional boring technology that produces very limited impairment to your yard. Of course it is part of 3 Mountains Plumbing’s mission to leave all job sites cleaner than when found, but it helps that directional boring technology employs tidy and efficient drilling.

A Wirsbo pipe installation certified 3 Mountains Plumbing professional will dig only a small pot hole through which the directional boring machine will land within a foot of its target.

There’s Nothing Boring About Directional Boring!

  • Accurate
  • Clean
  • Precise
  • Effective

Speak to a professional to find out how 3 Mountains Plumbing can help with your Portland property’s water service replacement.

Clogged Drains in Portland

Professional Drain Cleaning Recommended

Drain clogs are no fun. They are wasteful, unsanitary, and inconvenient.

Understandably many homeowners are convinced that clogged drains can be fixed in a do-it-yourself fashion. Wrong! Call a plumber to save money, save your pipes, and save your sanity.

Do Liquid Plumbing Solutions Work?

Yes, but only as quick fixes. Liquid plumbing solutions cause far more damage than good. They are:

  • Temporary—the clog will return, with a vengeance!
  • Detrimental to your pipe’s natural working capabilities
  • Made of hydrochloric acid that may destroy your pipes
  • Hazardous to your wallet in the long-term

Liquid plumbing solutions are heavy and will often settle at the bottom of a pipe. This haphazard idea works only to corrode, damage, and eventually burn a hole right through your pipe. Liquid plumbing solutions may loosen, but will never eliminate a clog.

What is the Best Way to Eliminate a Drain Clog?

3 Mountains Plumbing experts use an adept motorized snake that swiftly eradicates the heart of a clog without causing additional pipe damage.

Unlike a clumsy and acidic liquid plumber, the mechanical snake is affixed with various retrieval capabilities including:

  • Various cutting boards
  • Cutting blades
  • Cork screws

No drain clog is too big, regardless of the problem. Don’t roll the dice. Call 3 Mountains Plumbing and have your drain clogged fixed right the first time. 

Ask a Portland Plumber: Why is My Water Bill so High?

Hidden Water Leaks Main Cause of High Water Bill

Is your Portland water bill suddenly out of control? You’re not alone. Many Portland residents experience sudden spikes in water costs without quite knowing why. Neglected plumbing systems run smoothly–until they don’t. It is not uncommon for a minor plumbing issue to swell a water bill over the course of a three-month quarterly cycle. Here are a few possible explanations:

  • Running Toilets
  • Mismatched or Leaking Pipes
  • Trickling Faucets
  • Water Main Line or Water Service Trouble

What Can I do About it? 

  • Check around your home.
  • Be proactive.
  • Contact 3 Mountains Plumbing.

Of course, not all water leaks are easy to find, or to hear. So, if strapping on a stylish headlamp and rummaging through a crawl space isn’t your idea of a good time, your best bet is to contact a service professional at 3 Mountains Plumbing.

The experience of a trained professional committed to quality service will save you time and help to avoid mistakes that may prove far more costly down the line. If you suspect a plumbing leak or water main line problem, be proactive! Seek the advice of a trusted Portland plumbing professional. 3 Mountains Plumbing are experienced in solving water service issues. You will be provided with a fixed price quote and be made aware of all water main line repair or replacement options.

Don’t be Sucker punched! Be Smart!

Avoid fluctuations in your water bill by checking in with the expertise of a company that’s been in the Portland plumbing business for over a decade. Oftentimes plumbers are sought for emergencies that need to be solved immediately. 3 Mountains Plumbing offers same day 24-hour plumbing service, but they also make it their mission to forge lasting relationships with their customers.

Keep your water bill at a predictable rate and contact a 3 Mountains Plumbing professional today to serve all of your Portland Plumbing needs.