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3 Things to Know About Sliplining

A sewer
One of the most important parts of your home's plumbing system actually resides beneath the dirt of your front lawn: the sewer pipe. This vital section of pipe connects your home's waste system to the municipal sewage pipes that run beneath the road. Without a working sewer pipe, waste would have no way of leaving your plumbing system.

If you own an older home, chances are that you have an equally old sewer pipe. Eventually, old sewer pipes develop problems that prevent them from working properly. One common way of restoring sewer pipe functionality goes by the name of sliplining. This article takes a closer look at three key things to know about sliplining.

1. Sliplining Is a Type of Trenchless Repair

Sliplining falls under the broader category of trenchless repair. Historically, when a sewer line suffered damage or restrictions, a plumbing contractor had to painstakingly excavate the buried pipe. As its name implies, trenchless pipe repair allows a contractor to replace defective sections of pipe without ever breaking the ground.

As a form of trenchless repair, sliplining presents several inherent benefits compared to excavation-based repair methods. First of all, a contractor can conduct repairs without marring your home's landscaping. Without the need for manual excavation, which tends to be a time-consuming process, sliplining also allows for much quicker turnarounds.

The quick and blemish-less nature of sliplining also means that it usually costs much less than excavation-based repairs. Finally, sliplining often improves sewer line performance by replacing older pipe materials with a seamless and low-friction alternative.

2. Sliplining Offers a Solution to Multiple Problems

Sliplining involves the insertion of a brand new section of pipe within the old one. The new pipe usually has a diameter 5 to 10 percent smaller than that of the original pipe. Contractors can use sliplining technique to treat a variety of different sewer-line issues. That said, sliplining is the best choice when dealing with damaged or degraded sewer lines.

In particular, sliplining is often used to solve the problem of channeling. Channeling involves the erosion of material along the bottom side of a pipe. This issue most commonly affects older cast iron pipes. Eventually, erosion may eat all the way through the pipe to the soil.

Sliplining allows contractors to restore proper flow without having to physically remove — or even expose — the channeled section of pipe. Once a contractor has installed the new pipe inside of the old one, they usually choose to cement the two together using a type of grout. In order to provide the necessary degree of stability, the original pipe must remain in mostly good condition.

If the degradation has become wide-spread, contractors usually choose another method of trenchless repair — either cast-in-place repair or the technique known as pipe bursting. These methods are also the best choice when dealing with sewer pipes with more than one bend in them. The sliplining technique, by contrast, delivers best results when dealing with largely straight sections of pipe.

3. Most Contractors Use Polyethylene Pipes for Sliplining

A variety of pipe materials work for sliplining. These materials include PVC, high-density polyethylene, and polyethylene. Yet most experts consider the last of these materials — polyethylene — to be the best, largely thanks to the joining process used for polyethylene pipes.

Unlike other pipe materials, polyethylene pipes can be attached to one another through the process of heat fusion. This fusion creates a monolithic pipe system — in other words, a virtually seamless network. As a result, polyethylene pipes experience far fewer leaks at joint sites as time goes on.

Sliplining forms one of the most effective techniques in a plumber's repair arsenal. For more information about whether sliplining can meet your sewer pipe repair needs, contact the pros at ABC Drain & Plumbing.