Need Help in replacing main sewer pipes!

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Old 12-11-13, 09:09 PM
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Need Help in replacing main sewer pipes!

I found out that I have several roots in my main sewer pipes under my house. The plumber said that we need to replace most of the pipes in the house. He gave me a quote and said most of the price will be digging the trench in the house and labor.

I was thinking of digging the trench myself to save on some money. I need to dig through tile, concrete, and dirt to get to the pipes. What would be the best approach. I heard getting a jack hammer, but one person said it would get too messy in the house. Another said that a rotary hammer would be less mess but more time.

Any suggestions in how I should dig up my house, I am looking for the most effective money saving solution.
 
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Old 12-11-13, 09:21 PM
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You sure you have to dig it? Was a camera inspection done? Did the roots get cut by a cutting bit and root X applied?

Unless the pipe has collapsed I see no reason to replace...

IMO I would get a second opinion,... Drain cleaners sometimes are shady and just want to sell you something.

Sewer root problems? Call your plumber and ask for RootX
 
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Old 12-12-13, 05:35 AM
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We got two opinions and both said the best solution is to replace a vast majority of the pipes. The pipes are over 40 years old and falling apart. Also, when I say roots, I'm talking about roots everywhere. After a conversation with my wife we decided to go the route of fixing all the pipes now than just get rid of the roots and run into this problem every year.

That is when I decided to do most of the digging myself.
 
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Old 12-12-13, 06:49 AM
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Your are on a slab? Are the roots outside the home in the yard? Why are you digging the pipe in the home?

I would have someone run a mole up the old pipe and run new pipe behind it...

The pipes are over 40 years old and falling apart. Also, when I say roots, I'm talking about roots everywhere.
Does not matter. If you cut the roots and treat with root X they will not come back...

You actually saw the pipe was falling apart???

What pipe material?? cast?
 
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Old 12-12-13, 08:12 AM
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If you are committed to the replacement there there are few simple and clean options. Possibly the best is to use a concrete saw to cut the concrete down both sides of where you need to trench. Then the concrete in the middle can be broken up with a jack hammer, rotary hammer (slow) or sledge hammer (slow and hard work, but good exercise ). Almost every method will be noisy and create dust.

One option is to block off the area with plastic curtains to contain the dust. Tape all joints and make sure your entrance has good overlap of the sheeting to limit dust escaping. The other option is to just let-r-rip and clean up the mess when the job is done. Most tools can be rented so if you plan properly you can probably get by with a 1/2 or day rental for each; concrete saw, electric jackhammer. Then you can use 5 gallon buckets to carry the debris out.

One word of caution especially if your house is on a slab is to locate any electrical and plumbing (water) lines that may run in the slab. If you can't confirm their location in the slab be ready for the worst when working. Turn off the water supply to the house and turn off any electrical circuits that my be run through the slab. It's not fun to have a geyser in the middle of the room or to see a bright flash of light and then the room goes dark.
 
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Old 12-12-13, 08:26 AM
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Pilot Dane,

Thank you for your response. I will get a concrete saw and go that way. I was told from someone who works on things like this that a rotary hammer would be a good investment. Should I buy that piece of equipment and rent a concrete saw, or just rent a jackhammer and saw together?

Also, would the concrete saw work on tile. I need to go through tile, concrete slabs, and then soil to get to the pipe. We will have the plumber map out where we need to go, I'll dig it up, he will fix, than I will put it all back and re-concrete with some help.
 
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Old 12-12-13, 08:39 AM
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Be warned you will get a lot of dust with a saw... IMO I would jack hammer...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPU-440sdF0#t=15
 
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Old 12-12-13, 08:43 AM
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Once you get the main hole hammered out the rest breaks easy... Way less dust...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BFkBXABSFJE
 
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Old 12-29-13, 04:57 AM
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Mainline resolution can get very expensive and cost vary widely

I have several 1 to 1 1/2 inch offsets in my 4 inch clay pipe. Cause is ground sifts and roots. Plumbers have estimated between $4000 and $12,000.

I said I do not want any gold lining. My wife and I think root killer and occasional clean-out (once every 3 years) is better deal. I can go to Home Deport and buy an ABS / Fernco joint for clean-out for $75. A 10 inch diamond reciprocating SawZall blade is $15. If I do that it will save me hundreds if not thousands of dollars.

If you have to dig under concrete HomeDepot will rent you 14 inch diamond circular saw to cut 4 inch concrete for $50 a day. Much easier and cleaner than jack-hammer.


NIBCO 4 in. ABS DWV Hub x Hub x Hub Cleanout Tee-C5811CHD4 at The Home Depot
 

Last edited by hudel; 12-29-13 at 05:03 AM. Reason: URL to ABS Clean-out
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