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Sewer line problems? (video)


By swebb   Follow   Thu, 20 Dec 2012, 10:54pm PST   2,294 views   28 comments
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I had the sewer line scoped on the house we are looking at.

The video is here if anyone cares to watch it:

&feature=youtu.be

I have had opinions ranging from "needs to be patched in one section" to "the whole line needs to be trenched and re-laid due to inadequate slope"

Do we have any plumbers on this forum with an opinion on the condition of the line? Any armchair plumbers?

Comments 1-28 of 28     Last »

zzyzzx   Fri, 21 Dec 2012, 10:20am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 1

I see a turd at around the 44 second mark.

Call it Crazy   Fri, 21 Dec 2012, 12:13pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (3)     Comment 2

How do we know that wasn't the video from your colonoscopy?

zzyzzx   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 2:39am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 3

Exactly where is the video are you seeing a problem?

Ceffer   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 3:46am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 4

I know it is not my colostomy video because it looks way too good and my head is nowhere in sight.

Call it Crazy   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 3:58am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (3)     Comment 5

Ceffer says

I know it is not my colostomy video because it looks way too good and my head is nowhere in sight.

Ha Ha Ha....

Lam   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 4:19am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 6

I think part of the pipe has been installed the wrong way up. causing the fluids to flow along the top of the pipe rather than the bottom. That's gonna be a big problem.

Bap33   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 3:24pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike (2)     Comment 7

The first 20 feet looks like pretty fresh white PVC pipe, while that lower section is china clay pipe (older than 1980 subdivision?). The china clay works awesome, especially under the roadway. If you had "Orangeburg" fiber pipe I would suggest full replacement, but what you have is great and has no issues.

I see nothing but a possible lazy cook allowing grease down the drain. No roots, no cracks in the clay bells, and that slight off-set they note is nothing to worry about, in my opinion. Those offsets are filled in and the poo slides on past. All the slight mis-alignments are normally slicked off with debris, but the plmbers wash out the lines before they scope, so those offsets are exposed. Not a big deal, in my opinion.

I see nothing wrong with the lateral, but I may have missed something, so use your judgement.

swebb   Sat, 22 Dec 2012, 4:16pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 8

E-man says

How much does it cost to patch? How much does it cost to replace the sewer line? What's the city/county requirement? Does it pass the city/county requirement?

$10k to re-trench and re-grade the line. All new line, so the "belly" at 36-40 feet and possible crack at 55+ feet get taken care of. Have to tear up the garage slab, but this is included in the $10k price. Also included is all permits/inspections/concrete and asphalt patching and utility "pole support" fee.

Patch is about $3500-$5500 and only addresses the "belly" (the portion where the camera goes underwater for 4 feet)

Denver Wastewater Management says it's totally serviceable -- it may need to be pressure cleaned, but it is fine as is and could last for years without issue. (I just found this opinion out on Friday)

I think I'm going to live with it -- it sounds like it's not going to cause a problem for some time.

Bap33   Sun, 23 Dec 2012, 5:23am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 9

swebb says

Denver Wastewater Management says it's totally serviceable -- it may need to be pressure cleaned, but it is fine as is and could last for years without issue. (I just found this opinion out on Friday)

I agree.

If you are looking for reasons to reduce an offer, that is one position. If you are really worried about future maintenance, that is another position.

swebb   Sun, 23 Dec 2012, 5:39am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 10

Bap33 says

I agree.

@Bap33

Is your opinion based on common sense / judgment, or do you have experience/expertise in plumbing?

Thanks

Bap33   Sun, 23 Dec 2012, 8:46am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 11

I have experience and demonstrated expertise. Not just in basic residential plumbing, but muni systems too.

swebb   Sun, 23 Dec 2012, 8:49am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 12

Thanks. I was trying to figure out how much weight to give your opinion. I'll give it a lot, say 50 lbs. :)

Bap33   Sun, 23 Dec 2012, 1:53pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (3)   Dislike (2)     Comment 13

I fully understand. Everyone is an expert on a blog.

zzyzzx   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 2:12am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 14

http://www.ratemypoo.com

Bap33   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 2:54am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 15

Bap33 says

I fully understand. Everyone is an expert on a blog.

lol .. this generated a "dislike"? On a thread about a sewer line? LMAO

justme   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 6:26am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 16

I think the camera ought to have a gravity sensor so that it can keep the perspective right-side-up.

Call it Crazy   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 12:20pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike (3)     Comment 17

Bap33 says

Bap33 says

I fully understand. Everyone is an expert on a blog.

lol .. this generated a "dislike"? On a thread about a sewer line? LMAO

I guess they thought it was a crappy thread :)

Bap33   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 1:58pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 18

justme says

I think the camera ought to have a gravity sensor so that it can keep the perspective right-side-up.

for large lines, there are units that ride along the floor of the pipe, like a remote control 4X4 truck, with a spinning, focusing, aimable lens. Really cool stuff. Cost about $200 for 1 hour of filming when you call guys with that setup.

for small line stuff, like this one, I have never seen a system have a type of "self-righting" for the video. I like that idea though.

I think getting a vid before having any work done is a great idea for anyone. The guy that did this job and made the video did a pro job, in my opinion.

swebb   Mon, 24 Dec 2012, 2:20pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 19

Bap33 says

I think getting a vid before having any work done is a great idea for anyone. The guy that did this job and made the video did a pro job, in my opinion.

$145 was the charge for the job. He talked me through the issues and handed me a DVD when he was done. He seemed pretty competent.

Bap33   Tue, 25 Dec 2012, 4:21am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 20

I would agree. Money well spent.

waiting_for_the_fall   Tue, 25 Dec 2012, 11:08am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 21

swebb says

$145 was the charge for the job

That seems like money down the toilet.

Bap33   Tue, 25 Dec 2012, 11:45am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 22

from a person living in "half moon" ... really?

taxee   Tue, 25 Dec 2012, 12:03pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 23

Bap33 says

I would agree. Money well spent.

Was the outfit named 'UP YOURS' ?

CaptainShuddup   Tue, 25 Dec 2012, 10:43pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (3)     Comment 24

swebb says

$145 was the charge for the job. He talked me through the issues and handed me a DVD when he was done. He seemed pretty competent.

I would have just waited for it to come on HBO.
It had more character development than Game of Thrones.

FortWayne   Wed, 26 Dec 2012, 12:42am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 25

Where did he say was the problem (inside and/or outside)? Are you on a concrete slab or raised foundation? What kind of damage is there? Roots, cracks? How old is the pipe?

I am no plumber, but I have some experience with this.

swebb   Wed, 26 Dec 2012, 1:12am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 26

FortWayne says

Where did he say was the problem (inside and/or outside)? Are you on a concrete slab or raised foundation? What kind of damage is there? Roots, cracks? How old is the pipe?

I am no plumber, but I have some experience with this.

They guy that did the scope was either a "junior" plumber or technician that primarily did scope work -- he seemed competent and knowledgeable, but did indicate that he was going to have someone else look at it. His take was that there was one main issue, and that was the "belly" at around 36-40 feet. He said it wasn't a bad belly, being only 3-4 feet in length; he normally would expect 6 feet or more for a belly, and suggested it might just be an offset in the pipe that has collected waste. He also noted that the line had "a lot" of waste in it. The other two problems were a small crack at around 60+ feet which did not appear to be leaking, and a section of cast iron pipe between that is in the foundation wall of the house -- plastic on either side, one of the joints at the cast iron seems a little bit misaligned. Not leaking, but a potential issue in the future.

There were several aggravating conditions which contributed to the high cost estimate. 1: The belly is under the garage slab. 2: yard access is limited, so trenching will have to be done by hand. 3: There is a utility pole in the alley near the connection to the main, which requires "pole support" from the utility company at an approximate cost of $1300 (large specialized truck that holds the pole while they dig their 14 foot hole)

The house has a partial basement and the sewer pipe is readily accessible from inside. There are no trees in the vicinity, and no apparent roots in the line. I don't know how old the line is, but the house was built in 1890.

Call it Crazy   Wed, 26 Dec 2012, 3:39am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 27

swebb says

Denver Wastewater Management says it's totally serviceable -- it may need to be pressure cleaned, but it is fine as is and could last for years without issue. (I just found this opinion out on Friday)

I think I'm going to live with it -- it sounds like it's not going to cause a problem for some time.

My suggestion is to live with it. I had a similar situation in my last house where I had a "belly" and there was also an issue where my lateral ran uphill to connect to the main line. I would occasionally get a blockage if somebody was too aggressive with toilet paper.

Overall, your line looks serviceable. Based on the money and hassles to dig and replace, you could get the line jetted and snaked once or twice a year and save a lot of money.

I actually had the sewer guys cut a clean-out in right outside my foundation so they could get into the line and clean it from the outside instead of accessing it from the basement.

woggs1   Wed, 26 Dec 2012, 4:09am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 28

Something just doesn't smell right..............

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