Sewer Repair: Every Homeowner’s Responsibility

Many homeowners are unaware of the fact that it is their responsibility to maintain the sewer lines underneath and adjacent to their houses which lead to the main sewer line below the street. Such negligence can cause serious problems for the entire neighborhood, as sewer lines play a key role in keeping the waterways clean and safe.

A sewage system can get damaged due to various reasons, such as:

  • Sewer pipe damage– Pipe damage can be caused via heavy construction work above the ground, settling of the soil, corrosion of the pipe, and broken joints between two sewer pipes.
  • Sagging sewer line– Deformation of sewer pipes are caused overtime as certain parts of the pipe become saggy and start to collect sewage, which in turn disrupts the sewer traffic.
  • Troublesome tree roots– Some sewer lines are constructed of pipes which are not metallic, rather clay or some other soft materials. The nearby tree roots can infiltrate the pipe through these joints to reach the water inside the pipes. As the tree roots grow, they can rupture the pipe.
  • Oil, grease, or fat if goes into the sewer line, can cause severe clogging.

Although clogging can be fixed easily, sometimes a part of the entire sewage system is needed to be replaced. There are many signs that a homeowner should check, such as:

  • If more than one plumbing fixtures back up simultaneously.
  • Frequent clogging of the drains.
  • Broken or leaking sewer lines often cause wet patches on the front lawn.

In case the sewer line starts to malfunction a homeowner must contact the local professionals who offer plumbing solutions. Although some of the basic sewer repair jobs can be performed by the homeowner, it is always better to contact a professional plumber as the actual problem can be rooted deep and if it goes unnoticed, it can cause more problems. Thus before opting for a plumber for the sewer repair job, getting a thorough inspection done on the entire sewer line is important. This is mainly done by inserting a small video camera in the sewer pipes. The video is reviewed later and a further inspection is done to pinpoint the exact source of the problem. There are basically two methods used by the plumbers in general, such as:

Traditional method

The land surrounding the sewer line where the sewer repair work is needed is dug up using a backhoe. Once the job is done, the area is refilled.

Trenchless method

 After locating the damaged section, small holes are made along it. A new pipe is used to pull through the old one. Bursting the old pipe and laying the new pipe takes place simultaneously. This method is much better compared to the traditional one, as it causes less damage to the front lawn and lanes. Although pipe bursting is a good option when it comes to relining a sewage system, there are other options also available, such as

  • Cured in place– The pipe is cleaned and dried thoroughly to make sure that it achieves its full potential.. Afterward, a hot jet stream of a liner is passed through the damaged section that fills all the cracks inside the pipes.
  • Pull in place– Two access points are made at both ends of the damaged section and the hot liner is pulled through it filling the large cracks.
  • Internal pipe coating– The pipe is cleaned and dried from inside and then a thick epoxy coating is sprayed to seal the cracks and leaks.

It is of utmost importance that a responsible homeowner should do a routine check-up on the sewer lines to maintain the health of their houses and the neighborhood.

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