RootX uses the aquatic herbicide Dichlobenil. It’s non-caustic, non-fumigating and non-systemic, and it contains no diquat dibromide, copper sulfate or metam sodium. RootX is classified as a General Use product by the Environmental Protection Agency, and it’s registered for use in all 50 states (EPA registration #68464-1) as well as Canada. In addition, RootX carries the signal word CAUTION, the lowest chemical hazard rating according to the ISO 3864-2 standard for hazard severity panels.
The patented RootX formula foams on contact with water. The foam acts as a carrying agent, lifting the herbicide to the top of the pipe where 90 percent of pipeline roots grow. Degreasing agents strip away grease and grime so the active ingredient can penetrate the roots, killing the root tissue on contact. RootX promotes bacterial growth to speed the decay and natural removal of roots. The foam also leaves a thin layer of the RootX herbicide on the pipe walls to prevent re-growth.
Mechanical root cutting is an immediate and short-term solution to relieving pipeline blockages caused by root intrusion. However, cutting roots is like pruning a tree; it stimulates even more vigorous and destructive root growth in the remaining roots. That means new root growth can fully clog your pipe again in just nine months.
Treating pipes with RootX tree root killer not only kills all the roots on contact, it also leaves a thin layer of the herbicide on the pipe walls to prevent roots from coming back. New root growth after treatment with RootX is much slower and less destructive to the pipe.
If this is the first time you’re treating a customer’s line or if it is completely blocked, it makes sense to use mechanical cutting to remove the root mass and restore pipe flow right away. However, you can kill any remaining roots in the line and stunt re-growth longer by applying RootX immediately after mechanical cutting.
It’s important to apply RootX within the first hour after cutting or wait six to eight weeks. That’s because roots release a traumatic acid to cover the cut ends and protect them against further injury. If you apply RootX immediately after cutting, the herbicide can penetrate the root ends before the traumatic acid coating is complete. After six to eight weeks, the traumatic acid will have dissipated, leaving the most vulnerable part of the root—the white tender meristem growth where cells are actively dividing—exposed to the herbicide. The more root tissue you can treat with RootX, the better.
If there’s still flow in the line, you may be able to save time and eliminate root cutting altogether. Simply apply RootX to kill all the roots inside the pipe. The dead roots decay and are carried out with the natural flow, restoring your customer’s pipe to its full capacity. Once you’ve put your customers on a maintenance program with annual RootX treatments, you should be able to eliminate mechanical root cutting in most cases.