One of the plumbing issues you need to be aware of as we enter the warmer months of the year is the sudden frantic attempts the trees around your home make to push their roots further into the soil. If the roots sense sewerage in the earth… they will make a break for it, and you’ll have to deal with tree roots in sewer line.
There only needs to be a small hairline fracture in a sewer pipe for a root to get in. The roots of some trees and shrubs can do some really bad damage once they they have a hold of the pipe.
One of the most common trees to cause damage to sewer lines on the Lower North Shore of Sydney are camphor laurels. Camphor laurels are large evergreen trees that grow up to 20-30 metres tall. The leaves have a glossy appearance and smell of camphor when crushed. These trees are not only pests when it comes to sewer lines, they are also noxious weeds, and will prevent other plants from germinating properly nearby.
The root systems of camphor laurels are massive, and spreading. One tree can often disrupt sewer systems up to two houses away from where the tree is located!
If you have one of these pests nearby and you want to know where your sewer lines are, you can obtain a sewer service diagram from Sydney Water (13 20 92).