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Root Control

Preventive care to keep your sewer pipes healthy and root-free

Roots are the sewer system’s worst enemy

Roots and grease are the #1 cause of sewer system overflows (SSOs), creating issues for system owners and residents. Problems such as fracturing of pipes, decreased capacity, increased preventative costs and unnecessary overtime are common effects of systems that are left untreated. The best course of action is preventive care, ensuring your sewer pipes stay healthy and root-free.

The best root control program is one that minimizes damage, disruption, and costs through regular, proactive maintenance. Duke’s exclusive root control chemical/herbicide treats the roots with each application, leaving them to decay in the sewer. Compared to mechanical root removal, physically cutting roots can damage pipes and can trigger thicker regrowth, leading to more frequent cutting. This preventive maintenance prolongs the life of your pipes, providing you with substantial cost savings in the long run. 

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Root Control: Preventive care to keep your sewer pipes healthy and root-free


Root Control Program & Video- Minimize damage, disruption and costs through regular, proactive maintenance

Duke’s utilizes Razorooter™, a herbicide-laden, thick foam the consistency of heavy shaving cream. Since effectively killing roots in sewer systems requires access to the entire line, Duke’s crews insert a hose from manhole to manhole. The hose releases and sprays the foam in all directions, allowing it to adhere to roots and penetrate through wye connections to kill roots even in lateral lines. The entire system is treated as foam compresses against pipe surfaces and penetrates cracks, joints and connecting sewers. Roots are killed on contact inside and outside the pipe walls, decay naturally and slough away, with regrowth delayed for two to three years. Trees and other above ground vegetation are not harmed.

The Duke’s Guarantee

Duke’s guarantees to kill all the roots in every sewer we treat and to eliminate main line stoppages caused by live tree roots. If live roots are found in a sewer within six months after the application, or if a treated sewer plugs up and floods due to tree roots during the guaranteed period, we will re-treat that section, at our expense, or remit to the customer 100% of the payment we received to treat that section of sewer. Any section of sanitary sewer we treat will not plug up and flood due to tree root obstructions for a period of two years. The guarantee period begins on the date of treatment and ends two years after the date of treatment. When we perform a repeat application within six months of the expiration of the previous guarantee, the guarantee is extended for an additional three years.

“Duke’s solves maintenance problems. I have worked with them directly for many years on several projects, and I’ve seen the exceptional results firsthand. I have personally entered manholes where we had up to 80% blockage caused by large root masses. After the Duke’s application, I re-entered one year later, and the roots were completely decayed. I’m so confident in Duke’s products and services that I refer them directly to my municipal clients.”

Hatch Mott McDonald

“The comprehensive MOM program, which includes a sizable root control effort, is a prime example of a success story that can be shared with other similar communities. It documents capacity assurance results and reductions in SSOs, which was our primary goal, without the high cost of implementing traditional I&I reduction efforts. We now have a good, solid foundation, fewer environmental impacts, and a process to continually get to the cause — grease and roots — instead of our previous reactionary approach to cleaning when the stoppages occurred. We have made great strides.”

Brown and Caldwell

Related Services

With years of experience in the industry, our team of experts have encountered and successfully resolved a wide range of issues. While performing preventative maintenance with our Root Control Services, our technicians may identify issues that require further inspection and evaluation.