The pipe system underneath your home takes water from your toilets, showers, sinks, washing machine and dishwasher into a sewer treatment plant. When these lines (or pipes) are damaged, they must be repaired or replaced.
What causes damage to sewer lines?
There are a few common causes of damaged sewer lines under your home.
When water runs through your pipes, a small amount of vapor is released into the soil surrounding the area. That vapor is made from moisture, nutrients and oxygen—all critical elements that trees rely on to survive. When the vapor is released, tree roots will grow toward it, much like tree branches bend toward sunlight, until it reaches the nutrient source inside your sewer pipe. Those roots will find any small cracks and begin growing into the pipe. These roots will eventually fill the pipe causing a massive clog in your drains, requiring sewer repair.
Severely clogged drains
You might think because hot or warm oil is a liquid that there’s no harm in pouring a little down your kitchen sink drain. Besides, that’s what the garbage disposal is for, right? Wrong. Grease, oil and fat should never be disposed of in your home’s drains. As grease and oil cool, they change from a liquid to a solid and can build-up in your existing pipes, causing severe blockages.
Broken or dislodged pipe
PVC pipes have a life expectancy of about 100 years, so age is rarely the culprit of a broken pipe. It’s more likely that an existing pipe will crack, break or become dislodged due to natural causes such as a tree root infiltration or ground movement. However, if old pipes under your home are made from clay or Orangeburg, corrosion can happen much more quickly.
The dangers of a damaged sewer line
A damaged pipe can lead to plumbing problems such as a clog or leak, or back up into your home causing extensive damage. It can also create health risks such as contamination from mold and harmful bacteria. Backups also cause sewers to overflow, spewing harmful waste into streets and waterways. Once a damaged sewer pipe is discovered, you have no choice but to pay for sewer repair or pipe replacement.
Traditional Pipe Repair and Pipe Replacement
Years ago, plumbers would spend hours to days tearing up the ground around your home to reach and repair the damaged sewer pipe. This required you to shut off your home’s water supply, potentially leaving you with no running water for two to three days. While the plumbers ran loud equipment, exhaust fumes would fill the air and your yard, driveway and sidewalk would be torn up. Once the damaged sewer line was repaired, the yard around your home would need to be completely re-landscaped, costing hundreds to thousands of dollars.
Many homeowners used to put off their home’s annual drain inspection for fear that the plumber would find a damaged sewer line!
Modern, Trenchless Pipe Lining and Pipe Relining
Thankfully, trenchless technology means there are faster, less intrusive and more cost-effective pipe repair methods available today including cured-in-place pipes (CIPPs), and pipe relining. And that means you don’t have to worry about what your plumber might find during a drain inspection. In fact, scheduling drain maintenance every 12-18 months can actually save you money.
NEW! LIGHTRAY UV REPAIR METHOD
LightRay UV Repair is a gamechanger for underground sewer pipe repairs. This state-of-the-art, trenchless pipe relining solution uses ultraviolet lights. The plumber lowers a bladder through a single, above-ground access point (typically a clean out or toilet drain) or through the vertical stack access point on your roof.
Once in place, the plumber inflates the bladder with air pressure. Then, the UV lights are switched on, activating the resin’s curing process. With no disruption to your home or property, the existing pipe is completely rehabilitated once the epoxy resin is dry.
Pipe lining uses special epoxy to create a pipe within an existing sewer pipe, providing the same structural strength as a new pipe. This trenchless technology avoids the damage to structures, floors, interior walls, sidewalks, streets and landscaping that many traditional pipe repair methods cause. There are two primary types of applications, the ‘pull-in-place’ (PIP) method and the ‘inversion’ method.
PULL-IN-PLACE (P.I.P.) METHOD
The ‘pull-in-place’ (PIP) method pulls the epoxy-saturated liner into position and cures it into place. To pull a liner in place, two access points are required; one that feeds the liner in and the other that pulls it into place. In some cases, there is only one available access point. In these instances, the inversion method must be used.
The ‘inversion’ pipe lining method offers several advantages:
- Only one access point is required
- Up to 200ft of liner can be installed in a matter of seconds
- Epoxy is laid against the pipe, adhering the liner to the pipe
Did You Know: Most large pipe relining projects require a combination of the pull-in-place and inversion methods. There are several benefits to pipe relining technology. It effectively:
- prevents root intrusion and stops leaks
- increases flow
- prevents destruction of property
- has the same structural strength as new sewer pipes
Maplewood Plumbing and Sewer has been repairing sewer pipes in St. Louis homes and businesses for more than 35 years. Our family-owned plumbing company prides itself on our solid reputation in the community. Give us a call to schedule your camera inspection and see for yourself why our loyal customers won’t use anyone else!
We offer a one-year warranty on all parts and labor excluding washers.
Give us a call at 314-310-4245 or fill out the contact form here to request a bid.