3 Sewer Line Procedures and Why You Might Need Them

Sewer Lines

If you’re like most homeowners, you probably wish that your sewer line would mind its own business without requiring your attention. However, sewer lines can become damaged by the roots from nearby trees, crack in an earthquake, or wear out due to age.

Fortunately, you have options when these problems arise. Ideally, it would be best to learn about those options in advance so you know what to do when it comes. Here are three sewer line procedures and why you might need them.

1. Inspection

Sewer line inspections are the first step when something goes wrong. If your drains have started backing up or slowing down, there could be an issue such as sewer line damage or a completely collapsed sewer line. A video inspection can clarify the issue and where the problem lies along the pipe. Signs you need an inspection include:

  • You notice foul smells coming from your drains or marshy, extra-green spots in your lawn above the sewer line.
  • You’re considering buying the house and want to ensure no problems.

While a video inspection can’t always find a leak, it can often find other problems, such as where the line is broken or tree roots enter the bar. This can help an experienced technician assess how best to repair or replace your sewer line.

2. Trenchless Pipe Repair

Pipe relining is a great modern way to solve some sewer line problems that would otherwise require more invasive procedures to access the line. With relining, minimal digging and no trenches are necessary, so this technique is described as “trenchless.”

Relining can involve either using an epoxy-like coating to cover the inside of the existing pipe (this works best if the pipe doesn’t have huge gaps since the coating needs a pipe surface to attach to) or placing a new pipe inside the existing pipe. Both methods can reduce flow somewhat.

You may need this type of pipe repair if:

  • You have problems with leaks and pipe deterioration
  • Video inspection shows severely broken pipes or lots of tree roots

Talk to your contractor about whether relining is right for you. If your sewer line is already on the small side, relining may not be the solution for you because it tends to make the line even smaller. In this scenario, you may find that you need a complete replacement. And relining doesn’t work in every case.

3. Sewer Line Replacement

Traditional sewer line replacement involves digging a trench down the line’s length to access and replace the pipe. Many homeowners dread this option, especially if they install a deck or elegant landscaping beds above the sewer line. However, not every sewer line replacement needs to be done via excavation.

Even if the trenchless repair options above aren’t suitable for your situation, you may be able to get a trenchless sewer line replacement done through a technique called pipe bursting. Some factors, such as groundwater and soil type, may limit the suitability of pipe bursting, so ask your contractor if it’s right for your situation.

Unlike relining, pipe bursting can work even on collapsed sewer lines in some cases (though not all). Even better, pipe bursting can allow the placement of a new line with a higher capacity than the old one. Pipe bursting typically requires digging two access holes. However, this is still minimally invasive compared to total excavation.

These three sewer line procedures can save the day when sewer issues arise. Streamline Plumbing can help you with sewer inspections, repairs, and replacements, whether your problems stem from an aging sewer line or a tree root infestation cracking open the pipe. Get in touch today to learn more about what we can do for you.

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