Replace sewer line?

Reply

  #1  
Old 08-25-03, 03:21 PM
marys235
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Replace sewer line?

I had a plumber run a camera through my sewer line, and tell me the line under the house from the bathroom to the outside wall has cracks in it, and has shifted downward in a couple of spots, leaving standing water. The line was full of roots growing through the cracks, which they cleaned out from the "clean-out" hole in the line outside. It looks really clean now, I watched the video. They want to replace the pipe, about 12 feet, for $6,000. To replace the pipe, they will have to break up my concrete slab through one room, and the tile in the bathroom. Is this really necessary? I had the line snaked out a year ago, and cleaned out now, and that's all I've done in 2 years of living in the house. Seems like it would be cheaper to have them come out once a year and clean out the roots for $300. There must be some sewage leaking under my concrete slab, because of the cracks, will that cause more problems if I don't replace the pipe? The pipe is metal, not clay or PVC, and the house is 30 years old. I've heard of people having roots cleaned out periodically without replacing the pipe, but the plumber seemed really concerned about the puddles of standing water in a couple of spots.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 08-25-03, 07:43 PM
Liquid plumber
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
6000 clams?!! If you want everything to be exactly the way it was before, then you might have to go ahead and pay it. But there are alternatives if you don't mind changing a few things around. If you can relocate your toilet against an outside wall, you would be able to shorten your waste pipe (that goes under the slab) from 12 feet to 2 feet. Any drain pipes that used to go into the waste pipe could be rerouted through the walls. If your bathroom is in the center of the house, you could build a throne (a platform that you would mount the toilet on) and run the waste pipe through a wall - and add a couple of extra inches to the thickness of the wall of course. Or you could put in an upflush toilet and run the waste pipe through the attic. Just a thought.

Robert
 
  #3  
Old 08-25-03, 08:04 PM
Liquid plumber
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Or you could do what OldGuy suggested in another thread and put in a sewage ejector pump. This might improve the appearance of your toilet compared to a upflush toilet.

Robert
 
  #4  
Old 08-26-03, 09:50 AM
marys235
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Replacing Sewer Line

Thanks for the reply, Robert. I also have a branch line from the bathroom on the other side of the house that runs all the way across the house and connects to the main sewer line right in the middle of the room they want to dig up, so I'm thinking I couldn't bypass the main sewer line without bypassing the branch line as well. That wouldn't work, would it? It's probaby a good 35 feet from the bathroom on the branch line to the main line. I thought lots of people had roots in their sewage lines, and they just have them cleaned out every year or so, and put that RootX in their lines occasionally. You don't hear about many people breaking up their concrete foundation to replace the pipe. I could have the sewage line cleared out by the Roto Rooter man a whole lot of times for $6,000.
 
  #5  
Old 08-26-03, 06:05 PM
Mike Swearingen's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Northeastern NC On The Albemarle Sound
Posts: 10,948
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Cool

Sectional pipe, such as cast iron like you have, is prone to getting roots into the segments.
Glued up plastic pipe (ABS black or PVC white) cannot get roots in them.
If the roots are under the house, you might consider removing the tree or plant next to the base of the house that is causing them to get into your sewer line under the slab.
If the roots are out in the yard, then you can replace the cast iron with plastic for a permanent solution.
The primary concern that I see here is the cracked, leaking, out-of-line pipes under the slab. This problem will only get worse over time, and may eventually collapse and plug up completely.
You can rent a "roto-rooter" machine and clear the pipes of roots when necessary yourself every year or two, or have it done, until you are eventually forced to repair it properly.
When doing major work like replacing all of this, you need to get at least three professional opinions and three competing quotes for the same work.
Good Luck!
Mike
 
  #6  
Old 08-26-03, 06:33 PM
Liquid plumber
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Is this branch line made out of the same metal that your sewer line is? If so, my advice would be to just burn the house down and cash in on your insurance policy.

Short of doing this, maybe it's possible to have your sewer pipe relined.

Here's something I dug up at yahoo.com that might prove useful: http://www.plumber-rooter.com/pipe-relining.htm

Robert
 
  #7  
Old 08-26-03, 07:18 PM
Mike Swearingen's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Northeastern NC On The Albemarle Sound
Posts: 10,948
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Cool

Robert,
Now THAT is something new. I wonder what it costs?
Looks interesting. They're always coming out with something new these days. If it works well, and lasts, it could be a solution to a lot of problems, such as Mary's.
Thanks.
Mike
 
  #8  
Old 08-27-03, 07:07 AM
marys235
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Thanks for the information, Robert and Mike, I appreciate the replies. I also have aluminum wiring, so a fire is a definite possibility, I'll keep my insurance policy up-to-date. I'm in the process of trying to get the video of my pipes from the plumber who ran the camera down them, they finally agreed to mail it to me after several phone calls. Hopefully, they actually will do it. Once I get it, I'll get at least a couple of estimates from other plumbers before I do anything. I'll definitely check out the possibility of pipe liners, that sounds like a less expensive solution to my problem, although if it's new, it probably isn't available in Oklahoma, seems like it takes longer for new things to get to us. Anyway, thanks again for the informationm I appreciate your time.
Mary
 
  #9  
Old 05-17-09, 12:56 PM
M
Member
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 7
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I actually started this thread, can't believe it was 6 years ago. I'm the one that had roots in my sewer line under the house, under the slab foundation. I still have not had the foundation dug up to replace the line.

I have been putting RootX in my sewer pipe for the last 6 years, 2x per year, and have only had to get the roots cleaned out a couple of times (both times I had forgotten to get the RootX). I was thinking of spending several thousand dollars to install new energy efficient windows, but then thought maybe I should use the money to try to get that pipe fixed. Roto-Rooter might be able to put in an epoxy liner, without digging up the line, for $6,000 to $8,000 (haven't had them come out to give an accurate estimate yet).

My question is, can you just go on indefinitely with roots in the sewer line? I haven't had much problem with it the last 6 years. Is the line definitely going to collapse someday, since it has cracks? I really want new windows, but if the line collapses, there's no way they can do an epoxy liner.
 
  #10  
Old 05-20-09, 11:14 AM
P
Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Lake Wales, FL
Posts: 462
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Its lovely to read a follow up on something so old.

I too have a sewage pipe from one side of my home to the other- for some reason the septic and bathroom are on one side and the kitchen and toilet on the other.
I have wondered what I will do if there's a problem some day, luckily mine is a plastic pipe.
I would say that a soft iron pipe is very strong and is not inclined to rust and I am surprised that there are cracks in it and that is has sagged in places, cast iron pipes usually break under load they cannot bend. (Unless very hot)
Are you sure the dips and roots are not due to loose joints and odd bits of pipe dropping out of line?
I would expect this pipe to go on for ever. (Unless there is some part of your home resting on it)
Are you using copper sulphate?
 
  #11  
Old 05-20-09, 11:31 AM
M
Member
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 7
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
My house had piers put in just before I bought it, to stabilize the foundation, and one plumber told me that the pier work may have caused the pipe to crack. I almost didn't buy it because of the piers, but I really liked the neighborhood. I should have gone with my first instincts, I think.

I'm not sure what is in RootX, it foams and is supposed to fill the pipe, to kill the roots at the top of the pipe. I buy it off Ebay, I don't think you can buy it in a store. Seems to work pretty well.

I'd like to think the pipe will last forever, just don't know what to think. It definitely had cracks and uneven spots, and some standing water. If it doesn't get any worse, I'd be okay with it. Seems like no one really knows for sure what it will do.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: