Sewers lines are one of the most vital components of a city’s infrastructure. Simple sanitation practices have produced revolutionary results over the course of human history. Maintaining an adequate sewer line is necessary to keep your home safe from the rapid spread of bacteria, disease and a foul mess.
Sewer line repair for the average person will be associated with the one main pipe which connects all the drains in your home to a larger one that collects from all the neighboring homes. This then continues to the disposal area or water treatment facility. In most cities, these are considered “sanitary sewers,” which run separately from storm drains in locations that have them. This separation helps to improve the effectiveness of water treatment, keeping your city’s water clean and potable.
Sewer line repair is most commonly needed because of reduced flow or a complete stoppage. The most prevalent causes are:
- Man-made objects being flushed down the toilet that should not be, or a build-up of these objects over time.
- Tree roots commonly grow into lines, cracking them and causing a build-up of dirt or other materials in the line.
- Shifts in the makeup of the ground itself, earthquakes, or simply wear and tear caused by age can also cause cracks.
Sewer line repair is not something most people even want to have to consider being a part of. These are the carriers of our most repugnant waste products. However, the system they are a part of is very complex, and should not be taken lightly. Because of this, repairs can be very costly, but the risks of letting problems go untreated will not only affect you and your pocketbook but potentially your neighbors and the environment in your neighborhood.
Sewer line repair in most situations leaves three major options – Continuous maintenance, relining the pipe and replacing the pipe entirely.
- Maintenance will require constant monitoring and the use of a snake to free up the debris that is causing a blockage. A snake is a very long but sturdy coil which can bend with the contours of piping, while still maintaining enough rigidity to push through most obstructions.
- Relining the pipe is useful when there has not been a major crack to the line, but use over time has caused the inner lining of the pipe to break down This causes it to be less smooth inside, which allows particles to accumulate and worsen the issue overall.
- Replacing the pipe seems like it would be a straightforward solution, but this is not always the case. Nearby trees and unforgiving soil composition can make this kind of job take weeks to complete and is only achieved by trained professionals with the proper heavy machinery.
Sewer line repair choice for you? This is highly dependent on the situation and the individual dealing with the problem. Replacing the line entirely is the best long-term solution and most effective, but can be entirely out of the price range for many people. Similarly, relining the pipe can bring a surprising price tag, but will also relieve the need to maintain proper flow through the pipe yourself by constant maintenance. In any case, professionals should be consulted for an estimate of costs because there is such a wide range of difficulty, time and labor involved.