Clearing a Clogged Sewer Line WARNING

Before clearing a clogged sewer line call SoCalGas to make sure it isn't blocked by a natural gas pipeline.

Clogged Sewer Lines and Natural Gas Pipelines

If your sewer line is clogged, there's a chance the blockage may be cause by or be near an intersecting natural gas pipeline. In rare cases, a natural gas pipeline may have penetrated the sewer line when it was installed. If this happened, an auger “snake” could damage the natural gas line when clearing the sewer line, which can cause a dangerous natural gas leak.

If you need to clear an exterior sewer line located outside of a structure using mechanical equipment, call us at 1-800-427-2200 before you attempt to clear the line. We'll respond by phone or visit the site to determine if a natural gas pipeline is intersecting the sewer line at no charge to you.

How to Clear a Blockage Safely

When clearing a blockage in any exterior sewer line, remember to follow these important safety steps:

  • Always use a cleanout outside of the structure to auger the sewer line, if one is available. Using an exterior cleanout will lessen the chance of natural gas entering into the structure in the event that a natural gas line is damaged while clearing the blockage.
  • Exercise caution when using a power-driven tool to clear the blockage. Any spark-producing device may cause ignition if natural gas is present.