Any normal residential or commercial property needs an elaborate network of pipes and plumbing in order to supply water and carry away sewage. Most of these pipes are underground and are highly susceptible to damage due to various reasons. There are natural contaminants in water which cause damage to pipes. The various contaminants in the water can speed up corrosion of the pipes, which is the leading cause of damage to the pipes. This is even more relevant to the sewage and other waste water pipes. All the damage caused adds up over time and at some point the pipes become extensively damaged, causing leakage of waste water or leaching contaminants of soil in fresh water. Once you have narrowed down the damage caused to the pipelines, you need to choose an appropriate approach to repair the damage.
Traditional way – digging up the underground pipe.
This is the simplest and the oldest way to repair damage to the underground pipes, just a dig a trench all along the pipes in order to remove them. Then those pipes can be repaired and replaced as suitable.
But being simple does not mean that it is the most cost-effective, convenient or feasible way to repair pipes. Here are some of the disadvantages of this conventional method:
- If there is any development over the area where the damage to pipes is detected, then it will likely be damaged. This can be a problem if you have an elaborately landscaped yard and you need to dig through it, and it is an even bigger issue if the damage is under any built up area and you are required to dig up the flooring.
- As you can imagine, this can be quite expensive, both in terms if digging up all along the length of the pipe, as well as in term of rebuilding whatever was damaged in the process.
- It is quite a time-consuming process since it requires quite a lot of digging depending on the length of the pipe which has to be removed.
- The digging equipment used can be quite noisy, and the debris and mud removed from the digging can cause quite a mess. Thus, this causes quite a lot of inconvenience and will likely disrupt your daily schedule a lot.
The trenchless methods
New advancements in technology have enabled new methods of pipe repair which can be far superior to conventional methods. The methods we shall discuss here do not require digging a trench throughout the length of the pipe and hence are often called as trenchless or no-dig technology.
One of the methods is quite simple and is often used for very light damage or minor corrosion issues. This method can be carried out by digging a small pit or by accessing the pipe by any existing manhole or cleanout access point. First, the old pipe is thoroughly cleaned using a hydro jet and other equipment. Then the inner side of the pipe is lined by a layer of epoxy. This coating forms a liner inside the unlined PVC, cast iron or clay pipes. This liner fills out any small cracks to prevent leaks and prevents corrosion. This is a quick and easy solution to prevent further damage or corrosion in existing pipes.
Another method is the CIPP or cured-in-place pipe method. This method can be used to fix moderate to high levels of damage to pipes with minimal or no digging required. As in the previous method, there is no need to dig a trench along the entire length of the pipe, it is possible to perform this process by using existing manholes, or by digging small pits. First, the pipe has to be thoroughly cleaned using a hydro jet in order to get rid of any dirt and grease. In this process, a slack pipe made of fiber reinforced resin is inserted into the existing pipe. This pipe is inserted or pulled into the pipe through the pit or manholes. Once into place, the slack pipe is inflated to fit the old pipe diameter appropriately. Then the resin is cured by using head, steam or just allowing it to cure over time so that a new pipe is formed inside the old pipe. The pipe is then connected to the remaining sections via the pit then the pit can be closed.
The advantages of trenchless method
The trenchless method can be quite more cost effective and convenient as compared to digging a trench along the entire pipeline. It takes usually about 1 day most trenchless pipe repairs, and it can be conducted with minimal disruptions and digging. It is the most efficient way for repairing any pipe with more than 1.5-inch diameter. We offer a 10-year parts and labor warranty for the new liners, but the expected life of such liners is 50 years so you will not have to worry about your popes for a long time.
We at Kwik Plumbers offer expert services for trenchless pipe repairs for water supply as well as sewer lines. Call us today for more details about solutions for your plumbing problems.
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