What is The Best Way to Repair a Sewer Drain?

By |Published On: January 6th, 2021|Categories: Residential Plumbing, Sewer Systems|

What is the best way to repair a sewer drain? 

Do you know what the best way to repair a sewer drain is? It’s not something taught to just anyone. Professional plumbers and contractors know. But you should too! In this article, we are going to discuss what sewer drain repair options are available, the different types of sewer repair, and: should you repair sections of pipe or the whole line? 

First, let’s talk about what factors decide which repair method is best for you. Take in mind the cost of actual repairs.

A sign that says "good, better, and best"

Trenchless sewer repair does not require extensive clean-up and renovation costs for all of the collateral damage. Using traditional methods, tile will be broken, walls will be torn down, wood flooring torn up, and concrete chipped away. You will have to relocate your family during the repair, making you pay for a hotel or moving fees. The cost keeps adding up! Also, using traditional replacement will have loads of old sewer pipes being removed, opened, and being hauled away from inside your home. Open sewer pipes inside your home can expose your family to harmful sewer gases and dangerous bacteria.

Read more about – How To Get Rid Of Smelly Drains

What are the available sewer drain repair options?

Over the years, different methods have come and gone deciding on their effectiveness, costs, and usability. Traditional methods can get the job done, but at what true cost? Trenchless repair has gone above and beyond, saving homeowners thousands and thousands of dollars in repair costs. Check out New Flow Plumbing’s
and contact us to see if we can do something for you!
So what are the options? What’s available, and what’s the best choice?
Two plumbers inspect a wall pipe.

Trenchless sewer repair (the best choice)

Trenchless sewer repair is a cost-effective, fast, minimally-invasive solution to replacing sewer lines. The name is correct, meaning it involves no trenches. Trenchless does not require the same amount of collateral damage that traditional needs. That means little to no;
  • torn up tiles

  • broken walls

  • ripped flooring

  • trenches in your yard

  • destroyed concrete

  • excavation

Trenchless sewer repair is broken up into two methods; pipe bursting and pipe lining, each with its usability, cost, and repair time. Let’s start with pipe bursting.

Pipe bursting

A brand new HDPE (high-density polyethylene) pipe is attached to a winch with a cone-shaped bursting head and pulled through the old damaged pipe. The damaged pipe is broken apart as the new pipe takes its place. Pipe bursting is usually cheaper than pipe lining (the next method). Pipe bursting can be completed in one working day. 

Pipe bursting machine pulls in new HDPE pipe.

Pipe bursting machine pulls in new HDPE pipe.

HDPE pipe being pulled into pipe.

HDPE pipe is pulled into a pipe.

Pipe bursting replacing sewer line without digging a trench.

Pipe bursting replacing sewer line without digging a trench.

It does not require heavy excavation, only using a couple of 4ft x 4ft pits to access the damaged pipe. It’s a permanent solution lasting 50 to 100 years after installation. Pipe bursting can also be used to replace a functioning pipe with a larger one to increase the flow rate.

Pipe lining

Also called structural pipe lining, or cured-in-place lining (CIPP), sewer pipe lining involves a special, epoxy-impregnated liner to create a new pipe directly inside your old one. 
We find two access points and feed in a felt liner (cut for the pipe’s dimensions) saturated with a special epoxy and then insert it into the damaged pipe. A bladder inside the liner is inflated and pushes the epoxy against the walls of the pipe. After the epoxy cures, the bladder is removed, and you now have a brand new pipe within your old one. CIPP is designed to last up to 50 years.

Traditional sewer drain repair

Sometimes a sewer line is so badly damaged that no trenchless sewer repair method is viable. Trenchless technology cannot be used on pipes that are back-pitched, which means that the original contractors failed to use the right slope for your sewer line to your city connection.
If the pipe has collapsed onto itself, you will have to go this route. Conventional sewer repair quotes may be smaller than trenchless, but that is because it does not typically include the clean-up and repair costs to property damage.

Should your repair your sewer drain or replace it?

What we mean by repair is when only sections of pipe are fixed, only focusing on the noticeable problem and ignoring the future problems that come with further repairs. Repair is not a permanent solution, only being a temporary fix. It’s like slapping a band-aid on a pipe and expecting all the problems to go away. Repair involves only fixing sections or a few feet of pipe at a time, meaning you will have to pay contractors a minimum fee each time.
Woman signing a clipboard with plumber
That makes the cost per linear foot of repair much higher. Repairs are like “putting out fires” whereas the problems will come back, and you are not extending the lifespan of the pipes. 
Whatever your problem, we at New Flow Plumbing will assess the situation using a CCTV sewer camera inspection and give you the best solution. Contact us today and receive a quote.

About the Author: New Flow Plumbing Inc.

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