Pipe Replacement

Pipe Relining vs. Pipe Replacement

Plumbing problems can be a real hassle. There are plenty of smaller ones, but it’s time for major works when pipes get old. A lot of people get into a dilemma when it’s time for a home remodel. What’s the better choice? Should you reline or replace your pipes? Both decisions have their own set of pros and cons, and it’s up to you to make an informed decision about what works best for you. If you’re not familiar with the difference between these procedures, read our short guide.

The difference in procedures

First things first – what is the difference in procedure between relining and replacement? Pipe replacement is the traditional procedure. It is based on the process called pipe bursting. Basically, a professional will use equipment to split the old pipes, and replace it with a new one, while also expanding the surrounding soil. In the past years, pipe relining has been gaining popularity, first in the US and Europe, and now in Australia as well. The demand for quality pipe relining in Sydney has been on a steady rise recently. Relining works in a slightly different way. Instead of bursting the original pipe, the contractor will first inspect the damage using a drain pipe. Once any debris is cleared, they use special equipment called a liner, and they use it do distribute epoxy resin and a hardening agent. The new, impregnated pipe is then inserted using compressed air. The new pipes are excellent quality; they are stronger and more durable than PVC pipes. Durability is particularly affected by the fact that the material they are made from is resistant to corrosion. Once the procedure is done you are looking at decades with no pipe problems.

Pipe Replacement2

The speed of the process

If time is an issue, then all things equal, you should probably opt for relining. Regardless of the size of the project, relining is many times faster than traditional replacement. Smaller problems normally take a few hours, while bigger ones can be done in a few days. The same projects would take days and weeks respectively with the traditional approach. Relining is much less of an inconvenience, since living without functional plumbing is hard. When it comes to businesses, downtime is even less acceptable. Speed can be especially vital when it comes to storm drains. Sometimes it’s crucial to be able to repair the pipes within a few hours, before it starts raining again.

The cost range

There are plenty of factors that can influence the cost of the procedure. For an accurate estimate, it’s always best to call in experts, have them do a thorough assessment and give you a quote.  In many cases, replacement can be the costlier procedure. This is due to the fact that there is more labour involved. The necessary materials are often pricier too. Depending on what structures are above ground, there can be additional costs for the reconstruction of paths, roads, landscaping, and other elements. The price of extensive excavations can sometimes drive up the cost of replacement.

The underlying issues

There are certain issues with both of these procedures that might be a deciding factor. Replacement can be a problem if the soil underneath is very rocky or hard. Poor soil quality can also pose problems – for instance if the pipes are in a layer of clay soil. Homeowners who have beautiful gardens with valuable features or extensive landscaping tend to forgo pipe replacement too. On the other hand, sometimes replacement is preferable. In homes where the pipes are easily accessible and shallow, replacement could be a cheaper option. It is also the better choice if the pipes have significant sagging issues, or if they aren’t properly aligned. This is often the case in homes that have been renovated. Previous renovation projects might have caused disruption to the pipes. And finally, sometimes the pipes are so old and damaged that it is impossible to complete the relining procedure. In that case, replacement is the only possible solution.

While both of these methods are very efficient, which one you choose will depend on your specific situation. If you are in doubt, always consult an expert who will help you make the right decision for you and your home.

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