Trenchless Pipe Repair

Sewer pipes (and water pipes) go bad after time. For sewer pipes, that can be especially true if there are trees nearby and the roots get into pipes. The problem is that most of the older pipes that need replacing are terracotta. With ground shifting or house settling or just age the terracotta can deteriorate over time. Since there are joints in the terracotta pipes the roots can grow through the joint or any crack in the pipe and as the root gets bigger it breaks up the pipe.

Traditional Sewer Pipe Replacement

The traditional way to replace a sewer pipe is to bring in a backhoe or other machine and dig a trench down to where the pipe is and then lay a new pipe. Nowadays the new pipe will probably be cast iron or more likely PVC or some other plastic. This creates a large pile of dirt in your yard, can destroy plantings and walkways, patios or decks and whatever else is above the pipe. So you not only have the expense of replacing the pipe but rebuilding the deck or patio and re-landscaping after the project is completed. Plus, the whole project can take a number of days.

New Trenchless Pipe Replacement

Usually, with this newer process, the whole job is done in a day. You don’t need to replant the lawn or shrubs or worry about walkways or anything else that you do with the traditional trench method. It is less expensive and the repairs are permanent (perhaps not in geological time, but for all practical purposes) and meet code.

2 Small Holes vs. One Giant One

Rather than making a large trench, all this method needs is a much smaller hole at the beginning and the end of the piping run. A drilling head is run through the old pipe, breaking it up and expanding the space so that a pipe of the same size can be pulled through. This new pipe conforms to code, has a 100 year lifespan, doesn’t leak and deflects roots and is chemical resistant.

Pipe Relining

Another option, instead of pulling a new pipe through, is to reline the old pipe. A lining is pulled through the pipe. Then an air bladder is blown up to press the lining out against the old pipe. The liner is saturated with an epoxy resin which dries in 3 hours. The diameter of the pipe is only reduced by 5 per cent but is now very smooth with no joints so the flow is better.

So, if you have problems with your sewer line, or water line, check around for the different options available. You may save yourself a lot of money and hassle.

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