Root Barriers: How they Work, and How We Install Them

July 13, 2020

root barrier systemA BioBarrier System should be installed if you are worried about your tree roots expanding and damaging your house. Tree root damage is more common than you think, damaging not just the foundation, but also plumbing and the landscape of the home. This usually only happens when a tree is planted too close to a house. If the tree has aggressive roots, then they will reach out for water wherever they can. Although trees can add beauty and shade to your home, they can also cause some problems.

What Root Barriers Do To Protect Your Home

Root barriers are used to keep tree roots from growing into pipes and sewer lines. By doing this it also solves the problem that caused the original damage. Root barriers are a defense system that helps stop roots from growing under a home’s foundation. Our Biobarrier System is a specially-designed geotextile fabric that helps embed into the tree's root, helping with new cell division to stop the root from growing.  Luckily you don’t have to get rid of your trees in order to keep your plumbing pipes intact. Installing a root barrier is safe for the environment and not harmful to pets.

Installation Process

The process of installing a root barrier depends on how old the tree is. If the tree is newly planted, the barrier must be placed around the edge of the hole that was dug. It is important that the top of the root barrier is level with the ground and overlapped so that it provides the maximum protection.

To begin, a trench 3 to 4 inches wide should be dug around the tree. Depending on where your tree is located and where you wish to prevent tree growth, you may need a single side barrier or a 360° barrier, it all depends on your situation. The trench that is dug around the tree must be at least 30 inches deep. The barrier is then placed against the trench wall with one inch of the barrier exposed for help with settlement. The next step is to fill the trench with dirt and pack it tightly around the barrier. Once the dirt is compacted, the sod is placed down with the barrier showing. Many of our clients take this opportunity to apply new sod, but the option is up to you, the homeowner.  The barrier may be trimmed some if it is too tall and may interfere with lawnmowers. If you have a lawn service that cuts your lawn, it is best to tell them about this new addition to your lawn before they began cutting. Otherwise, accidents can happen, it won’t be pleasant. 

To help prevent future damage when it comes to trees, plant trees that have shallow roots or call us to install a root barrier. Remember that when planting a tree, the size of the crown of the tree will tell you how far out the roots will grow. For example, the larger the crown, the wider the roots will eventually grow. Roots can grow anywhere from two to seven times in diameter, so it’s best to plant them at least eight times the diameter away from your home.

Remember Root Barrier systems are put in place to help prevent damage to your home, a great example is foundation damage. Once they began to damage your foundation, you would want to get it fixed as soon as possible to limit the amount of damage as well as reduce the cost associated with the damage by the root intrusion. 

Call us if you have any questions or need an inspection of whether or not a root barrier system is needed to help protect your home. Our estimates are always free, so don’t hesitate to give us a call! We look forward to hearing from you.

Foundation Health Checklist

Mark Jacobs

Written by Mark Jacobs

Customer Service Manager Mark developed a passion for foundation repair in his formative years. Growing up in the family business has shaped the way he looks at homes and his ability to solve problems - from the ground up! He loves to read and keep up with the new technology that is constantly developing in the foundation repair industry. Outside of work, he loves adventuring with his family, spending time by the water, and has a passion for cooking.

Post a Comment

Foundation Checklist