trenchless sewer line replacement

18 Nov. 22

Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement – Is It Worth It?

Coming home to a backed-up sewer or flooding because of blockages in your sewer line, or a pipe bursting is high up on the list of things that you definitely do not want to experience as a homeowner. Clogged-up pipes and blockages lead to nasty consequences, so if you have a damaged sewer pipe it needs immediate attention. 

Trenchless pipe repair or trenchless sewer line replacement are new modern methods that come with many advantages and minimal drawbacks. Mainly because they take away the need to do unnecessary evacuation to get to the damaged pipe. Advertisements promise, less mess, less stress, and quicker and cheaper service, does the reality match up with the hype?

  1. What Are The Different Methods of Trenchless Sewer Replacement? Go Find Out.
  2. Is Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement Right For You? Let’s See.

What Is a Sewer Line And Who Is Responsible For It?

Before you can decide to go with trenchless pipe repair Chicago or stick with traditional, you need to understand what is involved to make an informed decision. Houses are connected to the city’s sewer system via a large pipe that runs from the street to your home. This pipe is known as your sewer line. 

Traditionally broken and damaged sewer pipes would have to be dug up, in order to get to them to perform repairs, or to replace them. To do this a long trench has to be dug that is 2 feet wide and several feet deep, from your home to the street. This is a very labor-intensive method; this could also involve digging up pavements, gardens, and other obstacles along the way. Of course, these obstacles would all need to be put back afterward, at your expense of course! 

How Much Does It Cost For a Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement?

Repairing or replacing a sewer line pipe the traditional way typically takes a minimum of a week and can cost up to  $20,000, without including the costs of the obstacles you have had to also dig up. To compare, trenchless sewer line replacement is $155 per linear foot.

What Actually Is Trenchless Sewer Replacement?

The modern technique of trenchless sewer replacement has been developed so that sewer pipes can be replaced or repaired without the need for digging up the ground, thereby preventing the damage of nearby objects, and reducing labor which in turn also reduces the time and the cost of the technique.

When trenchless sewer line replacement is being performed there are 2 main techniques that are used: pipe bursting and pipe lining, which is also known as trenchless sewer repair.

Pipe Bursting Method

  1. Firstly a professional sewer service will dig out access holes where the pipe meets the street and where the sewer line passes from the street into your home.
  2. Next, a missile-like device is inserted into one end of the pipe. It makes its way forward and breaks up the pipe as it moves through it.
  3. Attached to the back of the device is a new, flexible sewer line that takes the place of the old pipe as it breaks.

Pipe Lining Method

  1. The sewer service will dig the access holes at both ends where your sewer line enters your house and where it connects to the street.
  2. Using this method the existing pipe is not destroyed or removed. Instead, it is repaired using an epoxy-resin mixture. This mixture is inserted within the damaged pipe in the form of an epoxy-coated sleeve.
  3. The sleeve is then inflated and the mixture hardens on the inside of the existing pipe to form a stronger pipe. In fact, a new pipe is formed inside of the old one.

Benefits of Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement

Just comparing the differences between digging a trench, during a traditional replacement method or not digging a trench it’s clear to see that trenchless technology definitely has some advantages.

Reduced Property Damage

Trenchless techniques do not dig a trench to get access to the sewer line, therefore everything that is in the way of the path of the sewer line is not in any danger of damage or breakage. Where the access holes are dug there might be some minor damage, but the professionals that do the digging make sure to take as much care as possible.

Potentially Lower Costs

In most cases choosing trenchless technology over the traditional method works out much more cost-effective. Labor costs are reduced and the need for restoring your property and damage is no longer there. 

Faster Job Completion

Traditional sewer line replacement needs a week minimum as all of the trench digging that needs to happen. Trenchless methods only have 2 holes to dig and then the pipe bursting or pipe lining method. Many jobs can be done within 2 days at the most.

Less Disruption

The traditional method of sewer line replacement is very disruptive and inconvenient for anyone who lives around you! Not only do they need to dig a trench following the path of your pipe, but they may also need to close your street. The water will be turned off for the duration of the job; a week maybe longer. You’ll have no water to wash the dishes, have a shower, or even brush your teeth, and your toilets won’t flush.

Longer-Lasting Results

Older sewer lines are not as durable as the sewer lines we use today. New sewer lines are stronger, more durable, and last longer. Your new sewer line will have a life of 50 years or more. 

Trenchless Sewer Replacement Drawbacks

As with most things, there are some situations when trenchless sewer line replacement or trenchless sewer repair is not the best option.

Requires Trained Technicians

Trenchless methods are professional techniques and you need a fully trained plumber in order to carry them out. Plumbers that are qualified to perform these techniques undergo extensive training and certification. They are trained to assess if trenchless technology is the correct method for a project. 

Not Suitable for All Circumstances

There are times when you have to get to the damaged or burst pipe to see what damage has been done, for example, an incorrectly installed pipe or a collapsed pipe. In this situation, a trench actually needs to be dug in order to resolve the problem.