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How to Clean a Sewer Line

Your toilet water is bubbling, your water is backing up in the tub, your kitchen sink’s drain is making strange noises... It’s starting to sound like you need to clean your sewer line. In the spirit of “Spring Cleaning,” here’s what you need to know in order to fix a sewage headache.


How to be Eco-Friendly in the Plumbing and Sewer Industry

Although our industry is NOT known for its contributions to the environment, we have a unique opportunity to affect the sustainability of our communities through eco-friendly plumbing and sewage business practices. Pipe Spy and other sewage contractors work at the intersection of buildings (which account for about 40% of U.S. energy consumption) and water (a limited resource). This means that our work, if done purposefully, can help reduce energy use, save fresh water, reduce carbon emissions, and more.


When to Replace a Sewer Line

If persistent drain issues are occurring in your home, there may be a bigger sewer pipe problem hiding underground. Sometimes it’s possible to fix a clog or other sewer line issue with simple drain cleaning and maintenance that the homeowner can have serviced, but there comes a point when these methods won’t solve the problem. At that point, sewer lines and sewer laterals will need to be repaired or replaced by professionals. How can you tell it’s time to replace your home’s old sewer line or sewer lateral with a new pipe? These are the “red flags” you, as a homeowner, should keep in mind when considering a sewer lateral replacement.


2016 Year in Review: Case Studies & Customer Reviews

2016 was a very busy year for Pipe Spy. From general sewer repairs to full private sewer lateral replacements, our team of sewer repair experts have kept busy providing custom solutions across the Bay Area. We’re excited to highlight some of the great work our team provided during 2016, and we’re even more excited to continue providing our community in Oakland and the Bay Area in the new year!


Environmentally-friendly Sewer Repair: Now California Green Business Certified!

Creating a sustainable, environmentally-friendly community is incredibly important to those in Oakland and the surrounding Bay Area community – and Pipe Spy is proud to do our part to contribute to these efforts. We’re proud to announce that Pipe Spy is now "Green Certified" as a part of the California Green Business Program, an initiative to promote and create a more environmentally-friendly California and Bay Area.


How to Choose the Best Trenchless Sewer Repair Professional

Facing a sewer repair or plumbing project can be intimidating. Many homeowners aren’t seasoned professionals with years of plumbing experience, and rightfully choose to hire a professional to help tackle their sewer repair. But how do you choose between potential trenchless sewer repair professionals? Here’s a guide to help you select the right trenchless sewer repair professional for your project.​


PSL Pressure Test 101

If you’re a property owner in the East Bay Area, you may need to know about PSL pressure tests. A PSL pressure test affects private sewer laterals, or PSLs, in the Bay Area and are essential for current or potential property owners looking to buy, sell, build or remodel their properties. In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about PSL Pressure Tests – and why you need to know about them.


Summer Plumbing Tips

As the weather gets warmer, there are a lot of things people begin to think about. Trips to the beach, spending time on vacation and other things may enter the mind but it is also a time to think about the plumbing in the home.

Taking some time to consider these summer plumbing tips could help you enjoy the rest of what summer has to offer. Ignoring these tips may mean that the money that was going to pay for the summer fun may actually end up paying for something else.


Plumbing Tips for Homeowners

A home is a long-term investment – but in order for that investment to grow in value, it must be maintained and sometimes improved. To keep home plumbing systems in good working order and properly maintain your home, a dedicated homeowner should learn the basics when it comes to maintaining a home's plumbing, pipes, and fixtures.


How to Prevent a Sewer Backup

It’s that time of year when spring cleaning is on your mind and you’re preparing for the nicer weather to return. You’re sorting your closets, cleaning out your pantry, making repairs and updating things around the house. One area that many people forget to focus on is their home's plumbing.

As one of the most utilized parts of your home, a simple plumbing problem could mean major issues. Unfortunately, many property owners don't realize an issue until it's too late. This only emphasizes the importance of taking the necessary precautions and preventative measures with your sewer line.


EBMUD PSL Compliance

With mandates from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, the East Bay Municipal District (EBMUD) formed the East Bay Regional Private Sewer Lateral Program. This program has a large impact on Bay area residents and property owners, especially those with old and aging sewer laterals in need of repair. Learn everything you need to know about the East Bay Regional Private Sewer Lateral Program – and how to make sure your property is EBMUD PSL compliant.


Why You Should Avoid a DIY Sewer Line Repair

As a homeowner, it’s important to know how to fix common problems that might occur around the house. Over time, many homeowners become a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to basic household projects.

However, there is one DIY project that isn’t basic and is best left to the professionals: sewer line repair. Sewer repairs can quickly become complex when handled by someone with little to no experience in plumbing. While it may seem like a project worth taking on, there are several reasons to avoid taking a DIY approach to a sewer line repair project and instead choose to hire a licensed, professional plumber.


Pipe Spy’s Building - Now with More Art! from Muralist Kate DeCiccio

Pipe Spy’s customers rarely visit our headquarters, but we have some exciting news to share about it. We’ve always been proud of the Pipe Spy warehouse, with its distinctive blue-and-yellow striping. Now we are proud to present the mural art of SF Bay Area’s Kate DeCiccio, which Pipe Spy commissioned to honor our local West Oakland community.


How to Prepare for El Niño: Managing Sewer Lines

El Niño’s storm systems have the potential to wreak havoc on your sewer lines. If El Niño brings rain to the Bay Area this winter, flooding and sewer backups are likely to happen; if your drains and sewers aren’t clean, you could have ugly plumbing issues. Storms and clogged drains are a bad mix, as excess ground water could exacerbate existing sewer line and plumbing issues and cause property damage. That’s why it’s important to be proactive and avoid flood and backflow damage by getting your sewer lines inspected and cleaned before the storms hit.