Plumbing Forum - Professional & DIY Plumbing Forum > General Plumbing Discussion > Drain and Sewer Cleaning > For the love of Pete--pls help-roots



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Old 12-04-2013, 06:45 PM   #1
micscout
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Default For the love of Pete--pls help-roots

My clay pipe in my 50 yr old house in San Diego have root intrusions at junctions, again, in 12 spots, 9 mos after hydrojett ($1.100.00). Plumber did hydrojetting again yesteday and this time it took twice a long and it was ALOT louder. (did they do a poor job first time)?
I had been told 9 mos ago that if I applied Root-x twice a yr I would be fine.
Now they say I need a liner ASAP after this second jetting, for 82 feet at the cost of 9K. This seems high. Very high. City says I may want to do a liner part of the way (under sidewalk and street to main line) and put new ABS pipe down otherwise. Plumber says that will be more than 9K.
I think I am being taken? I am single woman with no-one to discuss this with. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
I almost just want to see what happens after this second hydrojetting
Thank you



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Old 12-04-2013, 11:36 PM   #2
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We tell most people who visit the forum with concerns about pricing to get several quotes, at least three. More if you still feel uncomfortable with pricing. It's important to get an idea of what your local plumbers are charging since prices vary from region to region. Pricing may also be different depending on the costs of the business and the quality of work being done.
There are probably several companies willing to give free quotes, but be sure to keep any and all information from previous services so that they won't have to charge for more investigation of the problem. Time is money to a business.
Check for BBB registration and rating as well as any input from the BBB on customer service. You can find this on their website.
When getting a quote have a detailed explanation of work to be performed including permits and inspections, responsibility for any paving, concrete or landscaping needed after the installation is finished. If an inspection is required by local authorities and a contractor suggests skipping the inspection and offers a lower price, he may be cutting corners and doesn't want to get caught. This could cost you more money later.
On the subject of your past and present service to the sewer, hydrojetting doesn't fix a root problem. It may clear them temporarily for a camera inspection, but the roots will grow back. Following up with root killer is a temporary and inadequate solution, too. The roots will always grow back and the separations from the immense amount of force that's created from their growth will eventually crack and break off pieces of the clay pipe. A repair or replacement is necessary.
Discuss installation options with several plumbers and relate cost to how it's performed. Another plumber may not recommend lining the pipe because the pipe situation is not ideal or he just may not have the equipment and renting is very expensive. Another may recommend doing the whole job with new ABS or PVC pipe. I prefer new plastic pipe from end to end, no pipe liners or pipe-pulling. Plumbers will, naturally, want to use the equipment that they purchased so that they can pay for it. There's nothing wrong with that, I'm just reinforcing the fact that several quotes from companies are needed.
If there is anything else that I have left out I hope another members chimes in to add to this post. If you have any other questions or concerns feel free to reach out to us again.



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Old 12-05-2013, 04:25 PM   #3
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Thanks so much for responding.
Although 9K is alot of $$, I am will to pay whatever is needed to do the right thing, but without being "taken".
I have spoken with several plumbers and getting estimates. Every one tells me something different and I am pretty confused.
One guy said I cannot get new pipe all the way because I will have to dig up sidewalk and road.
One guy says he has never heard of anyone needing 82 feet of liner in his entire career.
One guy says you should have the entire pipe lined whether you need it or not.
One guy said he has been doing liners for 30 yrs, but in same sentence says he does about 10 a yr but uses sub-contractor, like every other plumber does, whether they tell you or not.
I am just so confused.
I am a nurse. I just know about doing a good honest job and would never lie about my work. This is hard for me.

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Old 12-05-2013, 05:20 PM   #4
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For pipe replacement a Plumber in CA will not be able to replace the pipe under the sidewalk or road unless they also hold a Class A engineering license. They would be encroaching in the public right of way. In many places the city or district is responsible for the pipe up to the cleanout you have at the property line. Almost everywhere I work in So Cal is this way except parts of LA that I know of. Is your pipe under driveways or structures at all? or is it in grass and planters? I personally would look more into replacement over a liner and replace with a PVC Pipe of some kind, I think in the long run it will last.

Did they video the line and give you a DVD so you can see where the problem areas are?

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Old 12-06-2013, 02:54 PM   #5
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Thanks so much for your response.
I think I have been told that in San Diego you are responsibile all the way out to the street. I can call about this.
The line goes under extensive landscaping (rock and plants), 50 foot brick planter, several very mature fir trees, bouganvia and hedges (which provide lovely privacy and kinda a courtyard feel to my cul de sac house). I have been told to take this down/dig it up would lower my property value.
I have learned that the clay pipe has no breakage...just root intrustion at junctions.
After doing alot more reading and phone calls, it seems maybe lining entire pipe does make the most sense. They are giving me workmanship/installation warrantees for the time that I own house and transferrable to next owner. For the actual lining, manufacturer gives 50 yr warrantee.
I am told that except for the very large companies, most plumbers subcontract out to other entities and they use Liner "x" or "y". So to me it seems like maybe whatever margin the plumber chooses to put on top of this is their profit basically? I mean they probably have to prep area for the sub-contractor, and coordinate work, but that is it? Am I right?
Yes I do have a DVD of the line.
So I am leaning toward 100% lining rather than digging up yard but then 2 of you are basically leaning towards repipe. I guess another option could be to put new pipe down in accessible areas (rock and plant area), then put liner under the planter, trees, sidewalk etc. If I put new pipe in..how long am I without water?
Thanks so so much. I am beginning to get a handle on this I think with your help

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Old 12-07-2013, 01:11 AM   #6
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It's been a few days since your first post and sometimes relieving some of the "Gotta do it now!" pressure gives you some time to think about it clearly and make a good decision.
How long you would be without water (sewer drainage) is up to the contracted plumber to answer since we can't see the full scope of the work needed. It's usually not too long, but most folks can improvise for toilet needs during he process with neighbors, friends and even local health clubs as a back up plan. In times of need you may surprise yourself at how resourceful you can be.

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Old 12-07-2013, 11:04 PM   #7
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Another option that you might want to consider is pipe bursting. This is where a hole is dug at each end of the pipe to be replaced, then a strong chain or cable is pulled through the pipe. Then a head that breaks the old pipe apart and pushes the pieces aside is pulled through the pipe, with a new plastic pipe attached to the back of the head. This leaves you with a new plastic pipe, without fittings except for the connections at either end. This will only work for straight runs of pipe.

I am at present not involved with trenchless pipe repair, only researching the various types of pipe replacement with an eye to offering them in the future, so I don't really know how this would compare with pipe lining cost wise.

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Old 12-09-2013, 05:23 PM   #8
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Thanks to both of you for your responses.
I am actually a pretty tenancious person and problem solving under stress is what I do everyday as a nurse.
I have had some independent plumbers out to house, and have been speaking with city. They basically all tell me the current big plumbing company I am working with is/has been performing highway robbery.
I looked at my bill for March at which time they they said I had 62 feet of pipe to the main, they put in two cleanouts in front yard (depth 2 ft) and hydrojetted it for 2000.00. Now they are saying line is 82 feet long. Told me I had 17 root intrustions, told tenant 19 root intrustions and after hydrojetting again a week ago, she might be able to flush the minimum amt of TP for about a week before it clogs up.
This is ALL dishonest..if my line is 82 ft long, and each pipe is 7-8 ft, how in the heck do they say I have 19 areas of intrustion?. I have had 31 visits with this plumber in the last 7 yrs for snake outs, at about 175.00 per visit. You do the math. They have taken me. I am so angry. One of the independent plumbers camered it a few days ago and said your line is in great shape, other than it has junctions where root WILL grow back and is crystal clean. You can flush normally. There is no rush here. You could very likely hydrojet for 400 once a yr and use Root ex and be fine for a long time. I wanted to kiss his feet.
I am considering a re-pipe to city line, then lining out to main sewer, just because this is a longer term fix. I am not cheap. I want to fix it correctly but not be robbed blind. Thanks for letting me rant.

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Old 12-09-2013, 06:29 PM   #9
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Sounds like you may have found an honest plumber...good news.



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