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How Trenchless Pipe Relining Works
Inspect & Diagnose
We’ll use a special camera to map out your drain system and identify areas of damage.
Clear out debris
We’ll remove any tree roots, blockages and debris from the pipe system to prepare it for the new pipe liner.
Insert new pipe
The new pipe is inserted into the existing system and inflated. Once cured, it will last up to 50 years!
Pipe Lining FAQs
Pipe Relining or Pipe Replacement – which is the most effective?
Traditionally if you had blocked drains or overflow of your sewer a plumber would need direct access to it to fix it. That could mean cutting holes in walls, digging trenches in garden beds or closing off (or even excavating) roads to gain access. The alternative solution – no dig pipe relining – is the keyhole surgery of the plumbing world. It is generally a less invasive, less cosmetically damaging method of solving plumbing issues but it’s not necessarily suitable, or most economical, in every situation. There are a huge number of factors that determine the best solution for a blocked pipe or overflow of sewer, and a qualified plumber is the best person to ask what solution is most likely to meet your needs. Below we discuss some of the factors worth considering when deciding how to solve your plumbing issues.
When is Pipe Relining the most appropriate solution for a pipe or drain problem?
Before any work is undertaken a camera will be inserted into your pipes to identify the cause of the issue, and assess the condition of your pipes. Blockages caused by items like wet wipes can generally be dislodged with a robotic cutting tool, or a high pressure hose, and are unlikely to have caused the sort of damage that would require the pipes to be re-lined or replaced. A blockage caused by a tree root might also be able to be removed with a cutting tool, however the presence of roots generally indicates a leak (the roots are attracted to water), and so simply cutting the roots in the pipe is unlikely to solve the problem permanently.
Most leaks in Sydney and surrounding areas occur in two types of pipes:
- old terracotta (or vitrified clay) pipes – these pipes usually have sand cement or rubber ring joints every metre, and these connections are the most common source of a weak spot, which has degraded and caused a leak. The pipes themselves can also crack or disintegrate, but the joint connections are the most likely cause.
- newer PVC piping installed incorrectly or damaged through ground movement or weight on top.
Leaks in home plumbing can cause stains, damage and mould on your interior walls and leaks in the ground attract tree roots, and can destabilise soil and, eventually, the pipes themselves. You should be able to view footage from the camera and have a plumber explain what they believe the best solution for you will be.
Is pipe relining as reliable as complete replacement of my drain system?
Comparing pipe relining to digging up the old one to replace it, it can seem like a comparison between repairing an existing pipe and getting a new one. Pipe Relining is often referred to as pipe repair or rehabilitation, however, the end result of pipe relining is actually a new pipe – it’s just that the new pipe is inside an old one. Once a pipe is relined, the old pipe could disintegrate and the new relining will remain, unaffected. Essentially pipe relining gives the same end result as excavating and replacing – a new pipe that can stand on its own. The difference being that pipe relining doesn’t necessarily get rid of the old pipe.
Your plumber should be able to tell you whether your blockage or overflow is an isolated incident or a sign of ageing or damaged pipes that are likely to give you further issues. A thorough inspection involves not just the use of a camera but also a high pressure clean that should make the condition of the pipes visible. Your plumber will then recommend one of two courses of action:
- Sectional repair – a single faulty joint (the connection between two pipes), junction (the connection between two streams of pipes) or a piece of damaged pipe, can be replaced with a small section of liner or by exposing and replacing the problematic pipe or pipes.
- Total replacement or rehabilitation – complete replacement or relining of all your pipes. While it may only be some of your pipes leaking, if they’re all of a similar age and condition it can be more economical or practical to get them all done at the same time. This is usually recommended if there are signs of erosion or degradation on all, or many, of the joints. Taking this preventative approach ensures you won’t be left with collapsed pipes requiring emergency plumbing intervention. Collapsed pipes also usually take away the opportunity for relining, leaving excavation as your only option.
Every case in Sydney we’ve seen is different, which is why it’s so important to have a pipe lining professional investigate your circumstances prior to undertaking any works.
How does pipe relining work? Can all pipes be relined, and are all reliners the same?
The pipe relining process works by combining a flexible textile liner with an epoxy resin blend. The exact type of liner and resin blend will depend on what size pipe is being replaced, what that pipe is made of, and what will be flowing through the pipes. For example, a household sewerage system will have different needs to a business with chemical or industrial waste.
Once the right reliner and resin blend has been created it gets pushed into the old pipes using air or water pressure. The reliner sticks to the old pipe, and is then either left to dry and harden, or cured using hot air or water. Whatever the hardening process, the liner transforms from a flexible fabric to a hardened pipe, sometimes referred to as a CIPP (cured in-place pipe). The new hardened pipe can survive even if the old pipe surrounding it deteriorates or decays.
Not all plumbing problems can be solved with this pipe relining method. There are two situations which can prevent relining being effective:
- a pipe has collapsed, meaning dirt, sediment or another obstruction (that is too heavy to clear) will block the path of the relining equipment
- a pipe has a sag (sometimes known as a belly), which means some of the pipes have dropped below the acceptable angle for water to flow where it needs to go.
As a professional pipe relining company, it’s our job to be upfront and honest with you about your situation and only recommend the best course of action.
Is the reliner pipe as strong as a new pipe installed by digging a trench? What are the alternative materials?
If leaking pipes are exposed through excavation, the repair or replacement process will almost always use PVC (Polyvinyl chloride, a synthetic plastic polymer) piping. The pipe created through the relining process is stronger than PVC piping, and is longer lasting. The best suppliers of PVC piping in Australia guarantee their product for a maximum of 15 years. The relining products that Total Relining Solutions use have a 50 year guarantee and a life expectancy of 50 years.
Structurally there are also benefits to relining compared to PVC (or any other type of) piping too – most ready-made pipes are sold in short lengths to facilitate easy construction, which means there are joints where every piece of piping connects. Joints are the most vulnerable part in any piping infrastructure. The relining process creates one long pipe, which can navigate corners and change in size without requiring any joining mechanisms, so there are no weak spots.
When should I get pipe relining and when should I excavate?
The position of the pipes and the surrounding environment
If your plumbing pipes are not buried too deep, and are buried underneath healthy soil that hosts grass or only small shrubs or trees, then digging the pipes up to replace them might be the easiest and most affordable option. If your pipes run under paths, roads, landscaped gardens, a swimming pool, or a heritage-listed structure or tree, then excavating becomes much more difficult.
How quickly the problem needs to be resolved
In most cases relining can be performed more quickly and easily than excavation. Plumbing work can be disruptive – tenants sometimes need alternative accommodation, and businesses might not be able to operate while pipes are leaking or under repair, so often getting the issue resolved as quickly as possible is important.
The cost of pipe relining in Sydney
Obviously the speed of relining often makes it cheaper in terms of the hours of labour required by a plumbing team, but it’s important to consider not just the cost of the plumbing work, but also any related costs that might be incurred. For example, for a pipe in an apartment complex you might have to consider not just how much a plumber will charge to get access to a pipe in a wall, but how much plasterers and painters will charge to restore a wall to its original condition. When you consider the cost of external excavation you need to calculate the cost of landscapers repairing garden beds, carpenters repairing decking or concreters repairing driveways. Generally pipe relining can be done without, or with minimal, excavation – access is often only required at a single point, and it usually disturbs less than a single square metre of ground.
Total Pipe Relining Solutions commercial and residential pipe relining sydney wide.
Whether you are looking to reline your pipes in a residence or a commercial location in Sydney – we can can handle the job. As an expert pipe relining company, we have the tools and equipment to provide pipe relining solutions for even some of the largest structures – we recently repaired a damaged section of Sydney’s Harbour Bridge drain system!
If your home or business requires a pipe relining solution without breaking the bank, give us a call or submit an enquiry for a free quote. We highly recommend you speak to us before making any decisions as plumbing work on your drains can be extremely costly, and only pipe relining experts will be able to reliably assess your situation with a CCTV inspection and give you the trustworthy advice on whether pipe relining is right for you. We often don’t even need to reline pipes! If the blockage can be cleared, we’ll clear it.
Pipe Relining Sydney has never been easier or more cost effective. With no need to dig, relining work could save your a fortune and give you peace of mind that your broken pipes are no more. The pipe relining cost is a fraction of full excavation costs and with a 50 year warranty.