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Signs of a Failing Cast Iron System

If your home was built before 1975 your cast iron pipes are close to 50 years old or older. Given that cast-iron pipes are only expected to last approximately 50 years, your plumbing could be at the end of its life expectancy. Cast iron was meant to last between 50-100 years, it can withstand high pressure, and it will not melt or burn. Cast iron was the gold standard for pipes in the early 20th century. However, despite its dependability, structures built in the 1940s or 1950s are reaching the end of their lifespan.

One sign that there is a problem with your cast iron plumbing system is a gurgling sound from your toilets/sinks or the smell of sewer gas. The smell of sewer gas is a sign that there is a broken pipe. The broken pipe is releasing gases into the air that would normally be vented to the outdoors, and these gases are not healthy to have in your home.

Other signs that there is an issue with your old plumbing are: roach/pest infestation (including rats), warped wood floors, water-stained tiles or grout, or water damage to your carpet. If you are experiencing any of these warning signs, your plumbing system is likely failing.

This can create serious problems and potential health hazards for a typical family if these repairs are not completed in a timely manner. With symptoms of the problem including the high potential for mold growth, it is important that you have your cast iron pipes inspected. Fortunately, APT offers FREE cast iron pipe inspections that include video inspection so that you can see what your pipes look like that run underneath your home.

Free Video Inspection

If your home was built before 1975 we offer a free video inspection, so you can see the current state of your cast iron system.

Residential Pipeliner

Over the years, corrosion and rust can form and build up in your cast iron water lines and drain pipe, resulting in cracks, leaks, water flow issues, and creating holes large enough for tree roots to sneak in. This is especially true in older homes. The signs of a plumbing issue include low water pressure, slow draining, odors, water damage to your floors, and possibly pest infestation.

Sadly, pipes can go bad without much warning leaving you with a mess and a smaller bank balance than you had before. The traditional method of sewer replacement has been known to be very disruptive and noisy to you and your neighbors. When plumbing and pipe issues occur, calling a plumber is the first thing you should do.

An expert technician will come to your home and likely perform a camera inspection, which is exactly what it sounds like. A small camera will be fed into the pipeline where the technician will look for broken pipes, root intrusion, corrosion, or any debris that may be compromising the structural integrity of your plumbing.

Drain cleaning is a possible option to help with the plumbing issue, but that would be providing a temporary fix for the problem. The plumber will suggest traditional methods for repairing your old pipes, which could be either pipe repair or replacement of the existing pipe. Pipe repair would consist of locating the cracked or damaged pipe, and simply replacing it with new pipe. It would be the cheaper of the two options.

If the issue is much worse, replacing the entire system would be required. This would result in a big expense and upheaval of your home and lawn. And if you're wondering who is responsible for repairs, it would be the property owner.

Residential Sewer Lines

Broken Cast Iron Plumbing

When considering the sewer pipes coming to and from your home or commercial property, you need to know the difference between the upper lateral and lower lateral. The upper lateral is part of the sewer line that belongs to the home or other commercial building. The lower lateral is the part that connects to the main sewer in the street. It's normally assumed that the city is responsible for that part, but that would be incorrect.

The property owner is usually liable for repairs to both the upper and lower lateral. However, this varies across the United States. The good news is that what was once a very expensive and destructive process has come a long way. The latest technology is referred to often as trenchless pipe repair.

Trenchless technology has produced a new way to take care of sewer drain or main line repair with a method called Cured In Place Pipe or CIPP. This method uses a special epoxy resin, which enables a “pipe within the existing pipe” to be created. This new technology offers the same strength as new pipe.

What is CIPP?

What is Cured In Place Pipe exactly? In technical terms, a resin-saturated felt tube, which is made of polyester or other material suitable for resin absorption, is pulled into a damaged drain line. In easy to understand terms, a pipelining is inserted into the broken pipe and little to no excavation is involved in this process, which is why it's called trenchless sewer repair. There's no need to dig up your yard, driveway, or sidewalk.

Sewer pipe repairs using cured in place pipe (CIPP) works by installing a one piece liner through an existing access point. First, the pipeline must be cleaned by removing tree roots, debris, and anything else that might affect the pipe relining process. Measurements of the drain line diameter are taken and the lining is cut to fit on the job site. The resin is also measured and mixed per the measurements taken.

After this, the resin is poured into the liner and rolled many times to ensure the resin is embedded in the lining. The liner and calibration tube are loaded into the inverter and then inserted into the existing pipe. Air pressure inverts the lining from the inside out, allowing the resin to bond with the host pipe.

The pipelining is cured or hardened into place, allowing water to flow smoothly. This allows water pipes, sewers, storm drains, and other plumbing systems to be repaired without digging them up.

Benefits of Residential Pipeliner

As a trenchless technology, CIPP does not require excavation to repair a pipe that is leaking or that is structurally unsound. Depending upon design considerations, digging may be needed, but the pipelining is often installed through a manhole or other access point that already exists.

CIPP has a smooth interior and no joints, but CIPP can repair a pipe with bends as long as considerations are taken into account to prevent wrinkling and stretching. CIPP can effectively reduce leaks in pipeline systems without digging.

CIPP or pipeliner offers advantages that traditional methods do not offer. The fact that no excavation is needed makes it more affordable, less time consuming, and friendlier to the environment. Other advantages include the fact that the majority of the work is performed outside your home or building.

Also, there is less waste created with cured in place pipe. There is minimal disruption to sewer and water service. Expensive landscape does not get destroyed. And last but not least, there is a 50 year life-use expectancy.

Insurance Coverage Could Go Away

Tired of foul sewer smell and constant backups? Don't let slow draining tubs, toilets, and sinks get you down. Get help before it's too late.

Residential Pipelining Process

Cast Iron Pipeliner Access Point

The Pipe liner System likely used for residential jobs is designed for 2″ to 8″ pipe diameters and can line pipe up to 600 feet. The system can be installed through open end pipes and only one access point is required.

As for how long a trenchless pipe lining job can take, a normal job can usually be accomplished in one full day of work with a crew of three or four expert technicians or plumbers. However, usually a half day of preparation is needed before bringing in the equipment, and often a third day is needed for inspectors to come in and verify that the work meets requirements and is up to local code.

The most important question that comes to mind for most people usually has to do with the costs involved. The cost depends on a number of factors, primarily the length of pipe that needs lined. Other variables include how easy the drain line is to navigate, the condition of the old pipe, how much clearing or cleaning is needed in the line, the nearest access point, and what is needed to get the equipment in position.

When you consider that traditional pipe repair or placement costs can soar to $20,000 or higher, it's good to know that on average, trenchless pipe lining costs about half as much as digging up a sewer line.

Trenchless sewer repair is a less invasive option to repairing common sewer line problems when compared to traditional sewer line repair. With traditional sewer repair there is a lot of digging and excavation required in order to remove broken and cracked pipes and replace them. Traditional repair may damage or destroy landscaping, driveways, and other structures. Often times traditional sewer repair is impractical for a business owner due to ordinances that don’t allow for such disruptive methods.

This solution completely ensures that your plumbing issues are handled by total replacement.

When it's all said and done, trenchless sewer repair accomplishes all of what can be done traditionally without the need to dig a large area and can be performed underneath existing structures without disturbing them. This method is more eco-friendly than traditional sewer repair methods since it reuses pipe that is already in the ground instead of creating waste and excess fill dirt that has to be discarded.

All trenchless pipe lining installers need to be certified. Just because someone has the equipment and materials does not mean that they are certified. Always make certain that you are working with a certified and insured Pipe-Liner installer.

When you evaluate and research trenchless pipe lining, it's easy to understand why it's the choice among homeowners and business owners when it comes to pipe replacement. Trenchless sewer repair is as effective as the traditional dig and replace method. Trenchless sewer repairs are a lot more cost effective than the traditional option of entire pipe replacement. Traditional trenching jobs can reach costs higher than you would expect depending on how much pipe needs to be replaced. Ultimately, pipe lining is the right choice to make when it's time to replace your old plumbing system.

Free Video Inspection

If your home was built before 1975 we offer a free video inspection, so you can see the current state of your cast iron system.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tell if I have cast iron pipes in my home?

Generally speaking, if your home or business was built prior to 1975, there is a high probability that your building has cast iron pipes. If your home was built before then, and you are having issues with your plumbing you may qualify for a free video inspection and we can let you know for sure.

Are there any warning signs of cast iron pipe failure?

There are many warning signs that you may be having issues with your cast iron pipes. These signs typically include: Water damage and mold, toilets not flushing properly, plumbing constantly backing up, tubs and sinks not draining, pest infestations (roaches and rodents) and even foul sewer odors in your home.

How long will it take to fix?

The time it takes to fix your plumbing system is solely determined by the type of repair that is being performed. If a complete system replacement is being performed it takes a good deal longer than a plumbing re-route or pipe lining because your concrete slab must be cut open to remove and replace all the pipes under the slab. Call now to find to get your free inspection on your cast iron pipe system.

You have questions, we have answers. Feel free to contact us any time.

 638 East Highway 50
        Suite 4
        Clermont, FL 34711
352-796-3847 info@chooseapt.com

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