What Is the Average Sewer Line Replacement Cost and What Determines It?
The Cause of the Sewer Backup
The Length of Pipes
The Replacement Material
- ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) or PVC (polyvinyl chloride) – These are the most common sewer line replacement materials and the most affordable ones. Plumbers prefer these solutions, as they’re compatible with non-invasive methods and are easy to mount.
- HDPE (high-density polyethylene) – HDPE pipes cost more than ABS or PVC lines, but they’re also more flexible. For this reason, they’re a perfect option for regions prone to seismic activity. They’re generally used with trenchless replacement methods.
- Cast iron – Although cast iron lines are typically found in older houses, they’re still used in sewer replacements. That said, most plumbers consider them inferior to previous materials. They may be able to withstand outside forces, but they’re highly susceptible to rust. Hence, they’re only recommended in specific situations.
- Clay – Clay is prevalent in older houses, but it might not work well for new homes. Nevertheless, they’re fragile and often cause problems.
- Orangeburg – Made of compact wood pulp, this type of piping was used in homes built in the 1900s. Like clay, it’s not designed to meet the requirements of modern households.
The Replacement Method
- Excavation – Also known as trenching or traditional digging, excavation is the most expensive method because it involves substantial digging and restoration costs. In some cases, the price of restoring your carport or lawn often exceeds the excavation itself. It usually adds an extra $6,200 to the cost of your project.
- Lining – Lining is more affordable than excavation, as it warrants minimal digging. It involves your plumber digging down to your current sewer line, removing the broken section, and installing a flexible line through the interior. The pipe should then expand to take the place of your old line.
- Bursting – This is another fairly inexpensive sewer replacement method. The plumber installs a cone-shaped head on a pipe through the broken sewer line. The cone-shaped pipe breaks up the old one and takes its place.