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Sometimes, when a tree encroaches on your plumbing, there's little you can do about the tree itself – especially if it's your neighbor's tree. Tree roots can infiltrate your sewer line and break your pipes. However, there is a way to solve the problem and save your sewer line. Use a root barrier. A root barrier made of plastic will prevent a nearby tree root from damaging your sewer line. The root barrier will also keep the tree root from lifting up the sidewalk or destroying a retaining wall. The process will require work on your part, however.
You'll have to dig a trench three to four feet deep along the length of the pipe. You may also have to cut off some of the tree root. Unfortunately, lopping off any bit of the root might compromise the integrity of the tree, so you'll want to consult an arborist before you do any cutting.