Failing sewer and drain pipes are severely impacting water mains and all piping infrastructure that has been installed since the 70’s and 80’s and before. Ductile iron pipe has mostly been installed since 1977. Water mains break mostly because the pipe itself has a deteriorating structural condition.

Many factors such as water composition, air, ground temperature fluctuations and soil conditions contribute to failing pipe systems. Now we are faced with aging and deteriorating pipes and valves that are more than 50-years old. Older pipes that were installed before 1931 and up to 1975 are either cast-iron or asbestos cement and have run the course of their life span. Aging is also heavily influenced by the corrosion of the metallic pipes by soil and water causing the pipe to become unlined internally and externally.

The american Waterworks Association says that every two minutes a water main breaks in the U.S.

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Pipe Inspections on Smaller Diameter Sewer Systems

Small diameter pipes that are 16″ or smaller are not usually inspected on a regular basis. Every time a pipe breaks or begins to leak, the repair process gives us a chance to see the condition of the lines with our pipe inspection services. We can then locate and begin the cleaning and repair process once we have identified any breaks, leaks, discoloration, rust build-up, root intrusion and/or separations, and determine the pipe’s age, material and diameter to determine if the pipe should be replaced or relined.

Most Common Types of Line Breaks

Circle breaks that occur around the circumference of the pipe and split breaks that occur along the length of the pipe are the cause of most line failures. Circle breaks usually affect pipes that are smaller than 1-inches in diameter because of the presence of cracks in the pipes walls. Either the pipe has started to corrode or the pipe itself has become compromised due to defects in the manufacturing process. Also changes in temperature can cause or intensify crack growth especially when dealing with pipes that can become frozen. Larger diameter pipes tend to split first due to corrosion/deterioration of the outside of the pipes.