How to reline broken drains and sewer pipes
There is nothing worse than coming home from a long day at work and finding that you can’t flush your toilet or waking up early on a beautiful summer’s day only to find that your garden has become inundated with water and waste. With most plumbing underground we normally find out pretty late when something is wrong, and by that time the pipe is severely damage, its been infested with tree roots or become blocked from a build up of debris.
Traditionally the only way to deal with this kind of damage was to dig out the old plumbing. While this might sound like a simple solution it poses many problems, particularly how to dig without damaging the prize garden or breaking through the newly paved driveway or pulling apart the tiling in the toilet.
Luckily, today we have pipe relining, a technique designed to allow plumbers to repair pipes without having to excavate the old one. With a proven history in the industry pipe relining has now become the preferred way to repair broken drains and sewers.
So how do we reline broken drains and sewer pipes?
An inspection of the inside of the pipe
The first step to pipe relining is understanding what is going on underground and what issue has caused the blockages or flooding. Here the plumber will use a thin camera to probe the interior of the drain or sewer pipe use a monitor see what is the cause of the damage, looking for things like a decaying drains, root infestations or collapsed walls. Once the inspection is over the plumber will decide how best to repair the damage and whether pipe relining is the best option.
Cleaning out the drain or sewer pipe
Once it becomes clear what the damage is the plumber will begin to clear out the inside of the pipe. Normally, the plumber will first use a high pressure water jet to clean the walls and wash out any debris, including things like tree roots or sediment build up. If there is a blockage that can’t be cleared out by the water jet then a robotic cutter will be used, which can cut through almost anything including metal and concrete.
Relining the pipe
Once the pipe is clear and the walls have been cleaned it is time to roll out the pipe reliner. Pipe reliner is a textile which is coated with a thick epoxy resin, designed to set into a hard material. First the plumber will measure out the amount of pipe reliner necessary for the job, then will mix in the resin with a hardening agent before coating the textile liner. Once this is done they will use air or water pressure to introduce the reliner into the pipe and press it firmly again the walls. The pressure is then maintained until the reliner has been cured.
A final pipe inspection
Once the relining is complete the plumber will do a final inspection of the pipe with a drain camera. If done correctly the pipe relining should have created a smooth, perfect, watertight pipe that can last for more than 50 years!