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What You Should Know: Sewer Line Inspection and Repair

Sewer inspection and repair is nowhere near as difficult as it used to be. We now have the technology to not only inspect problems without digging, but repair or either fully replace systems without having to do so. Here is a quick guide to what you should know about sewer line inspection and repair.


Inspecting sewers is a very simple process nowadays. Whereas in the past, the whole area would have to be dug up to identify which sections were causing trouble, now a video camera can just be inserted into the pipe instead. These cameras are able to give a clear picture of what is going on inside the pipe, and precisely which parts are in need of repair. They can assess the type of damage and the severity of it - cracks may have formed due to root intrusion, old materials may be breaking down or the pipes may just be clogged.

This video technology is perfect for the average homeowner, who is unlikely to be an expert on the sewers. This allows them to fully understand what is going on and the mistakes that they have perhaps been mistaking. It can also stop them from being overcharged by bad repairmen, who in the past could try and say that a problem is worse than it actually is.

Video cameras can be used after repairs too, to clarify which areas have been fixed and if the job has been done properly. For example, if the pipe has been relined, a video inspection can discover whether the new lining has hardened against the existing pipe as it should.


No-dig solutions have made sewage repair much less straining for homeowners. No longer do huge excavations need to be made to remove and replace sewage lines, as trenchless technology allows all of this work to be done underground.

Pipe relining is a popular way of repairing a pipe without fully replacing it. This involves fully cleaning out a pipe - possibly with a high pressure hydro jet - and then inserting a new pipe which lines against the old one. This new pipe will harden and prevent the sewers from leaking, and because of the tough resin material, the chances of tree roots forcing their way into the pipe are lowered.

Resin injections are a good way of repairing a pipe if there are just a few minor cracks. This involves a small bit of digging to uncover the cracked areas, before the resin is injected into the cracks and allowed to harden.

Perhaps the best trenchless sewer repair and lining method, pipe bursting can fully replace a pipe without needing to dig at all. The existing damaged pipe is powerfully forced out of the way, so that a new pipe can be pushed into take its place. When bursting a pipe, the area of the hole grows enough to easily slide in the new pipe, and it's even possible to insert a slightly larger pipe, which will improve flow capacity. That old pipe materials like clay are replaced with PVC plastic, also makes the sewage system more durable.