A Guide to Trenchless Pipe Repair

When an older home is well cared for, the plumbing lines often are too. However, there are some situations where roots or simple age caused the pipes to break and need repair. Newer sewer and drain systems aren’t excluded from this kind of damage, and for a while, there was only one way to fix the issue. That type of sewer repair, however, meant big trenches in your yard, lots of labor and high costs.

But what if there was a way to fix the sewer and drain lines without all that digging? Fortunately, trenchless pipe repair is a far more efficient and viable solution. 

And to make the deal even better, this method frequently ended up costing less! 

If you’re interested in learning what trenchless sewer pipe repair is and how it works, this guide provides the information you need. You can also call our expert team here at Diamondback for any kind of sewer repair or plumbing opinions. 

What is Trenchless Sewer Line Repair?

One of the main purposes of your home’s plumbing system is to move any waste and dirty water away from each drain to a nearby main sewer line. That main line then transports the water to a nearby water treatment plant, where it’s cleaned out of any contaminants before getting sent through the clean water supply to be used again. 

These pipes that connect our sinks and tubs to the main sewer line are an essential part of our plumbing systems. However, these drain pipes – called sewer lateral lines – can break, often requiring replacement or trenchless sewer pipe repair to fix any nasty leaks.

Trenchless line repair is the best way to do these repairs without the need to dig into the ground to access the pipes there. This method can be far less invasive and time-consuming, allowing the final cost to be cheaper than other methods of repair. At the end of the session, not only are your sewer pipes fixed, but your garden stays intact!

What Causes the Need for Repairs?

Though roots can be one of the main reasons that you need to get your sewer lines repaired, the age of the pipes is often a far more common cause. There are many different reasons why all pipes need repairs as they get older, some of which are as follows:

Rust and Other Forms of Corrosion

The most common type of damage you might see in sewer pipes is rust. Since water is almost always running through your home’s sewer lines, the metal will start to rust with enough time. However, there are also a few conditions that can cause the rust to happen faster namely frequent hot water use and higher water pressure. 

Breaks and Leaks Caused by Clogs

Though it can seem rather odd at first, a clog somewhere in the sewer drain line in fact causes leaks. If it goes unnoticed for too long or if you keep delaying the cleaning process, the pressure inside the pipe can cause stress. Over time, the stress damages the pipe until the pressure is too great and the pipe cracks or breaks open.

Though the pipe might not be corroded right where the clog is, the pressure can put stress on those areas. The metal bulges and swells until it eventually breaks much sooner than a normal pipe.

Settling Soil and Sagging Pipes

Much like how corrosion in pipes can cause them to break from pressure, the weight of any soil settling above it can cause the pipes to sag or shift out of place. With enough weight from the soil, even sturdier pipes can break loose of any connections it has with surrounding pipes. These “sagging” areas stop the waste water from flowing correctly and are quite a big issue. 

Why You Might Need Sewer Line Repairs

Sewer pipe repairs, trenchless or otherwise, are typically recommended when a crack or break in the line is much too far to be fixed from inside the home. 

As mentioned above, clogs, sagging pipes or an excess of corrosion can cause the pipes to break, in turn leading to leaks. Even a small leak can cause drastic increases in water bills and make the lawn around the pipe a soggy mess. The trenchless pipe repair process is a great way to fix the break without costing you a lot.

The Different Kinds of Trenchless Repairs

Depending on the quality of the problem pipe itself, there are a number of different options that you can consider with trenchless plumbing. All are just as effective as the others, though newer technology has created sturdier repairs.

Slip Lining 

As the original style of trenchless repairs, slip lining involves quite literally placing a liner into the damaged pipe. The liner itself is made out of a plastic material and is pushed through to the end. Like CIPP, this method of trenchless pipe repair can cost far less, as low as $3000 to $4000! 

The only possible issue is that slip lining does require some digging at the entry and exit points of the damaged pipe.

Pipe Bursting

In this type of trenchless pipe repair, pipe bursting involves attaching a new pipe to a “bursting head”. The head is then pulled through the damaged pipe, either breaking apart completely or getting pushed out. The result leaves a brand new pipe where the old, damaged one was.

Cured-in-Place Piping

Cured-in-place piping, also called CIPP, involves using a new, epoxy layered lining into the damaged pipe. The liner is then inflated and left to cure. If the pipe is needed right away, the curing can be sped up with UV light. At the end, you’re left with an old pipe with an inner lining.


When you find that your sewer drain line has broken, you might get extremely worried, not only will you have to pay quite a lot of money to get it repaired but all the digging can absolutely destroy your lawn. Fortunately, trenchless sewer line repairs are an entirely viable method of fixing a damaged pipe. So, the next time you call our team for help with your home’s sewer line, ask about trenchless pipe repairs.

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