Traditionally, repairing damaged or leaking sewer pipes connecting to the main line required digging up your yard and landscaping around your home. Trenchless repairs rely on modern resins, sleeves, inserts, and other techniques to stabilize pipes, but cleaning and preparations are necessary before any repairs are done. Choose the right sewer main cleaning methods for your system based on what's going on inside it.
Cleaning with Hydrojet
Blasting the interior of the sewer main pipes with the power of pressurized water is the most adaptable option for dealing with a wide variety of materials and damage situations. Hydrojetting involves high pressure and tiny jets of water swirling away stubborn calcite and rust deposits inside metal and clay pipes. The pressure is adjustable to prevent damage to areas already identified as damaged or compromised by tree roots. The water pressure is powerful enough to knock loose some tree roots, but it may not be enough for invasive trees that have completely blocked a part of your sewer main.
Removing Roots with Robotic Cutting
Paying for a full inspection from a sewer cleaning service equipped with remote cameras will reveal where it's necessary to bring in heavier equipment than the water jets. Robotic cutters are metal trimming heads sized to fit the pipe to minimize contact with the walls. This prevents most of the damage that might disturb cracked or worn pipes, but it's still a risky technique to use on badly damaged areas. Most cleaning services only pull out this kind of equipment when there's a serious tree root with a tap root or other major growth that is too woody and tough for removing with water pressure alone. The remote control of the robotic cutting head allows for precision removal of the toughest materials, including concrete deposits.
Cutting Down Aggressive Trees
One of the most common and difficult to remove blockages found in sewer mains is the tree root. If your yard features aggressively spreading species, trees planted right on top of the sewer line, or the wrong mix of trees, consider cutting them down and digging up the roots. Even if your sewer main only needs water jet cleaning right now to prepare it for stabilization, removing trees before the roots break into the pipes will make the trenchless repair process much easier and prevent it from being compromised in the future.
Relying on Pipe Bursting
Sometimes the combination of hydrojetting and robotic cutting isn't enough, or there's simply so many blockages and crushed pipes that it's going to take too long. The third type of trenchless repair is called pipe bursting, and it's a method that combines preparation and installation in one step. An expanding drill head is forced through the damaged and blocked areas of the pipe, followed by the new pipe liner that allows sewer to flow easily again once the cleaning is complete. The system is designed for fast installation, but not all pipe types are compatible with pipe busting techniques and equipment.
Verifying the Condition
Finally, have the pipes inspected between the cleaning and reinforcement steps if possible. The plumbers may identify new areas that need extra reinforcement or change their recommendations about what method will work best with your sewer main's condition. Sewer main cleaning does as little damage as possible to your pipes, but it's sometimes inevitable when you're already preparing for trenchless repairs and dealing with cracked and crumbling pipes. Prepare to change what you're spending on trenchless repairs after having the sewer system cleaned and inspected for the last time because of newly revealed damage once tree roots and debris disappears.
Contact a company like Young Plumbing Corporation if you have specific questions about dealing with sewer problems on your property.