It used to be that if your sewer line failed because of root intrusion or broken/collapsed piping, you had a problem that was not only wildly expensive, but also very messy. Typically, a plumber would dig a trench in your yard for the length of the line – smashing sidewalks, patios, and driveways that got in the way and uprooting any trees. He would then lift out the old line and put in a new one. In addition to the cost of all that digging, you often had to pay to repave your driveway and replace any destroyed landscaping.
For many years, this was your only option.
Fortunately, today’s best plumbing companies can offer cleaner, faster solutions.
These days, pipes can also be replaced or fixed using methods that spare your driveway and landscaping. Two of the most popular techniques are trenchless pipe-bursting and cured-in-place re-lining.
If plumbing were medicine, traditional excavation would be cutting the body wide open to see what’s inside. Pipe-bursting and cured-in-place pipe re-lining would be high-tech arthroscopic surgery.
Which one of the three is the best option for you? It depends. If your sewer is in a wide-open area and isn’t too deep, then conventional excavation will probably be the most cost-effective option. The problem is that most sewers are installed underneath of landscaping, sidewalks, driveways, large trees. In addition to that, they usually run under or through the foundation of your home and are typically pretty deep. Any work performed in a trench deeper than 5 feet requires trench shoring to prevent the trench from collapsing. This increases the time that it takes to perform the work and ultimately increases the cost of the job.
If your sewer is buried deep underground and in close proximity to landscaping, sidewalks, driveways, etc. then either pipe bursting or pipe relining will be a more cost-effective option for you. The cost of a pipe-bursting replacement might be equal to, or even greater, than doing the job using conventional excavation, but when you consider the cost of replacing the driveway, sidewalk, landscaping, sprinklers — or even potential damage to other utility lines — the total cost of the job is often significantly less.
What is Pipe Bursting?
Trenchless pipe bursting is the process of destroying your old, damaged sewer pipe while installing a new long-lasting pipe. We make small access holes where the current pipe begins and ends. A special machine then pulls a new pipe along the path of your current pipe while breaking up your old pipe at the same time. This new pipeline can even makes its way through an offset or an underground elbow. The new pipe is entirely seamless, meaning that there won’t be leaky joints every few feet that allows roots from plants and trees to get in.
Along with being far less messy – pipe bursting requires only two 2×3-foot holes – this method is also faster than digging the length of the pipe. Your new pipe can follow the exact some route as your old pipe, even making those 90-degree turns, if needed. This technique has been approved by virtually every local plumbing authority in the country, and it has little environmental impact. Trenchless pipes ranges from 3-12 inches in diameter. You can actually upgrade the size of your pipe with minimal digging using this method.
What is Pipe Re-lining?
Pipe re-lining is a way of putting a “pipe within a pipe” to make a cracked and damage pipe flow again. A fiberglass liner is filled with a special epoxy that will cure itself to the inside of your existing pipes. The line is first cleaned using heavy duty power rodders and high-pressure water or hydro jetting. This removes debris and roots. Then the line is inspected with a video camera which records the length and condition of the sewer. The liner is then pulled through the length of your pipe, turning it inside out and letting it adhere to the existing pipe while providing a smooth surface inside through which water can flow.
Pipe re-lining requires minimal digging, can be completed in a single day, and the results are long-lasting. Like pipe bursting, pipe relining can save time and money, but it won’t work on pipes that have collapsed or that are too damaged for the liner to stick to them. In these cases, pipe bursting or simple excavations are the best options.
If you live in Pittsburgh PA and you’re having trouble with tree roots, or cracked and collapsed sewer lines, you don’t have to have your yard and sidewalk destroyed to fix the problem. Call Gillece Plumbing Services and let us find the cleanest, quickest, and most cost-efficient solution for you.