Damaged or cracked sewer pipes can be an expensive hassle to repair. But repairing and replacing a sewer line are two different endeavors. While repairing a cracked sewer line is the preferred solution because it’s less expensive than replacing the entire damaged section of pipe – which option better suits your situation will depend on the scale of the damage and the current state of your sewer line.
Causes and signs that your sewer line is cracked
Before you decide if you should repair or replace your line, it’s important to understand how to identify that your sewer line is damaged in the first place. The most common cause of a cracked sewer line is tree roots growing into the pipe and causing it to crack. While replacing a cracked section of the sewer line can resolve the problem at hand, tree roots will continue invading your sewer and drain lines in search of water and nutrients. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent tree roots from getting into the sewer line.
Common signs of sewer damage include sewer-like odors coming from your toilet or washing machine. This could be an indication of main sewer line blockage which is resulting in sewer gasses being forced into your home. Sewer gases are not only, unpleasant, but extremely toxic and therefore should be addressed quickly. Look out for discolored water coming from your toilet, sink, or tub. This is usually a clear sign that something is wrong with your plumbing system.
Another sign of a sewer problem is mold growth. Mold thrives in high levels of humidity and can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare. When a sewer line is damaged and releases waste under your property, it is very likely to create the perfect environment for mold to grow and spread in your walls and under your foundation.
If the problem is prolonged, a cracked sewer can also lead to a damaged foundation. That’s because when a sewer line, which runs underneath your property, is damaged and leaking, it eventually affects the very ground underneath your home, creating a void and encouraging your home’s foundation to shift and lose its integrity.
A leaking sewer line can also cause waste to pool in your yard, creating fertilized, lush green patches and attracting rodents.
Cracked Sewer Pipe Repair Options
A cracked sewer pipe repair can extend the life of your sewer line for many years and save you money on costly repairs or replacements in the future. Most cracked sewer pipe repair methods are trenchless, environmentally friendly, cost-effective and take much less time than replacing your entire sewer line. Some of these methods include:
Sewer linings are a great, trenchless method of rehabilitating pipes into an almost brand-new condition, often extending the pipe life by another 50 years and saving you money on complete pipe replacement.
Cracked Sewer Pipe Replacement
If your sewer line has reached its life span or is so heavily damaged that a liner or epoxy coat will not do, pipe bursting may be an option for you. Pipe Bursting involves expanding and bursting your old pipe into small pieces that get removed to make room for a brand-new pipe that is inserted in its place. There are three basic methods of pipe bursting: pneumatic, hydraulic, and static pull. Pneumatic pipe bursting is the most common method for sewer line replacement, while hydraulic and static are more often used to replace water or gas lines as well as old cast iron pipes.
Traditional sewer pipe replacement involves excavating your entire sewer line, removing it, and installing a new line. This is a very invasive process that often disrupts sidewalks, and driveways, not to mention your lawn or garden.
Before you decide if you’d like to repair or replace your cracked sewer pipe, call a professional plumber and schedule a sewer line camera inspection. Here at VIP Sewer and Drain Services, we’re ready to navigate you through the options available and best suited for your sewer line.