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Kerrylib 08-31-2006 10:15 AM

New Sewer Line
Hi everyone,

Just thought I'd pass on some info.

We just HAD to replace our sewer line in 40yr old house. Big maple tree in the front yard had decided that our main line was a fine place to find water and nutrients. We've been in the house for a little over a year and had to snake the line something like 6-7 times after it flooded the basement (YYYUUUCCCCKKKK!) The last time occurred after only about 1 month since the previous cleaning.

We had the line scoped and found about three places where the tree roots were getting into the line. Of course one of the locations was about 6-8 ft into the street. No chance of just replacing the line out to the sidewalk and actually fixing the problem. We gotta go all the way to the middle of the street.

Looking into contractors, we found a couple companies that do "trenchless" replacements. They dig a hole at each end and use a hydraulic ram to pull the new pipe through the old one. A wedge over the end of the new pipe shatters the old clay pipe and shoves it out of the way.

Two days of work and everything is back together. Our front yard didn't get tore appart, and now I can forget about wondering if I'm going to find water standing in the basement every time I go down there.

I can't say the $6500 bill was to my liking, but there wasn't much way around it. Companies that were going to dig the trench were going to be in the $9k range.

If anyone else is in the same kind of situation facing replacing their sewer line, check into this. Might save you some $$

glennjanie 09-01-2006 09:46 PM

Hi Kerrylib:
I have seen that system and it is very effective; no torn-up yard or dirveway and you can mow the grass over it the same day it is put in. I think its wonderful. The company that makes that systme encourages inflated prices but there are 2 ways to look at it.
You found the trench method was more expensive in your case; and its worth a little extra not to have the lawn or drive torn up. The trench job will leave a lawn scarred for a year or more.

wannabebuilder 02-01-2007 08:21 AM

My Trenchle$$ Experience
I had some guys give me an estimate on this and when they came out and showed me a pc of the product I was impressed! However - In my case they estimated $11,000! For about 45' no deeper than 6' strait line.

I'm going to rent a backhoe and do it myself with SDR35 gasket pipe. I bet it won't come to $2000.

It would make sense if you hade really nice landscaping though.

meharris 05-12-2007 07:59 PM

new sewer line under big tree

About 60 years ago someone planted a magnolia over our concrete sewer pipe. Now the magnolia is enormous and beautiful but its roots have caused the pipe to shift and it hardly works.

A plumber told me that the bulk of the expense for replacing the line is digging up the pipe and that if I exposed it the price would not be so bad ($800-900 vs. $3500+). But I have no idea how to get to that pipe without killing the tree. (It passes about a foot from the trunk.) Is "trenchless" the way to go? That sounds even pricier. The city sewer lines are in rough shape so I doubt they would shell out to give me a different route to the sewer. What can I do?:confused:

glennjanie 05-12-2007 09:27 PM

Welcome Meharris:
The trenchless way is certainly one way to go. I have a Magnolia tree getting into my sewer also. I have snaked it out several times and hired it done two times (BIG bucks!)then I realized roots don't grow where there is salt. I bought a bag of salt pellets like we use in a water softener and add a cup of the pellets every two or three weeks. Three years of no problems has convinced me the salt is the way to go. The large salt pellets will become trapped in the roots, lay there and disolve slowly while killing the roots.
This works well for clay or concrete tile; it may rust cast iron through and there are others like Orangberg that simply collapse and can't be cleared of roots.

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