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Introduction to Pipe Relining

Drain pipe relining is an innovative method used for repairing damaged drain pipes without the need for full replacement. This process involves inserting a flexible epoxy resin liner into the existing pipe, which then cures to form a new seamless pipe within.

Pipe relining, which significantly improves pipe functionality, has been widespread in Europe for over 25 years, though it’s a newer concept in Australia. At Ashfield Plumbing Services, we specialise in this trenchless pipe repair technique to provide homeowners and businesses across Sydney with a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional pipe replacement for more than 25 years.

This article will explore the drain pipe relining process, the range of pipe types it’s applicable to, its effectiveness for pipes with complex configurations, alongside answering common questions to clarify whether it’s the optimal non-invasive solution for your property.

Pipe Relining Suitability for Complex Pipe Layouts

Drain pipe relining is adept at mending pipes with numerous bends, angles, joints, as well as those with challenging access points. Specially designed flexible liners used in trenchless pipe rehabilitation are able to navigate even the most complex pipe layouts.

Our licensed plumbers conduct a detailed assessment of pipe dimensions and layout using a CCTV drainage camera during the inspection. Custom-sized liners, saturated with epoxy resin into them, are then inserted into the damaged pipe. Remote-controlled robotic cutters are used to manoeuvre the inserted liner around bends and angles.

The liners create a new, jointless, and corrosion-resistant surface inside the existing pipework, allowing for efficient wastewater flow. Studies have shown flow rates can improve by up to 50% after pipe relining due to the smooth interior surface.

In most cases, a single continuous liner is sufficient for pipe rehabilitation of an entire pipe system, regardless of how many bends, angles or connections it has. This avoids the costly and disruptive need for pipe replacement.

So for most properties in Ashfield and surrounding suburbs, even extensively branched pipes under floors or in difficult-to-access areas can be repaired with pipe relining. Our specialist Sydney relining team assesses the unique suitability for each property.

Factors Impacting Relining Feasibility

There are several key factors that determine whether pipe relining is a feasible solution or if pipe replacement or other repair methods should be considered instead:

Pipe Diameter and Material

The diameter of the existing pipes is important. Liners can generally accommodate a range pipe sizes from 32mm up to 300mm in diameter. Outside of this range, relining may not be possible.

The material of the pipe is equally crucial; relining is effective for clay, concrete, PVC, cast iron, and certain galvanised steel or ABS pipes, contingent on their state.

Damage and Obstructions

The amount of damage or obstructions inside the pipes will influence relining suitability. Complete collapses, major cracks or detached sections often require replacement. Additionally, issues like protruding taps, significant root incursion or acute 90-degree bends may hinder the installation of liners.

Access Points

Minimal site disruption is needed as we only require appropriate access points to insert the liner and supervise the curing process. Lack of access may rule out relining. Our team conducts CCTV inspections to identify any limitations or challenges specific to your property.

Although resin-soaked liners are extremely adaptable, the feasibility also hinges on certain site-specific elements. We thoroughly assess if trenchless relining can rehabilitate your pipes or if partial replacement, patch repairs or other solutions are better options. Our 25+ years of plumbing expertise informs this decision.

Professional Assessment of Relining Options

At Ashfield Plumbing Services, we have over 25 years of expertise assessing the suitability of pipe relining for properties across Sydney. Our qualified plumbers employ cutting-edge CCTV drain cameras along with sophisticated diagnostic equipment for a comprehensive analysis of your pipe system.

We initiate the process with a video inspection of the pipe using a CCTV drain camera. We maneuver the CCTV camera through the pipes to ascertain their precise layout, diameter, material and condition. Factors like severe cracks, collapses or blockages may indicate replacement is needed instead of relining.

we determine if your pipe configuration allows liner installation. The flexible epoxy resin liners can navigate multiple bends and angles, but very tight radii or completely collapsed sections often require replacement.

We also evaluate pipe access points. Suitable access is needed to feed the liner into the pipe, monitor the curing process and ensure repairs are completed properly. Lack of access can rule out relining.

We make sure to consider any site-specific challenges like tree roots or protruding pipe connections that could obstruct liner installation. Our 25+ years of plumbing expertise informs whether relining is feasible or if repairs require partial pipe replacement.

As the leading local plumbing company, Ashfield Plumbing Services has the technology, experience and authority to conduct professional pipe relining assessments. Get a quote today to evaluate if trenchless pipe relining can restore your pipes without the mess and cost of full replacement.

Pipe Relining Processes and Equipment

There are two main pipe relining techniques used:

Inversion Lining

This involves turning a resin-impregnated liner inside-out as it is fed into the damaged pipe. Pressure is applied to unfold the liner until it fully lines the pipe’s interior.

Once cured, the liner forms a jointless, watertight, and seamless new pipe. This is best for longer pipe sections.

Pull-in-Place Lining

With this method, the epoxy resin-soaked liner is directly pulled into place within the pipe, already in the correct orientation. This works well for smaller pipes or more complex layouts. Remote-controlled robotic cutters assist navigation around tight bends.

Additional tools involve CCTV drain cameras for pre- and post-lining inspection, devices for resin saturation, and equipment to facilitate curing. Cameras monitor the liner insertion and curing process.

Pipe relining minimises property damage, landfill waste, and the risk of exposure to toxic pipe materials by eliminating extensive excavations typical of replacement. For properties in Ashfield and across Sydney, it provides major cost and environmental savings.

Resin-Impregnated Liner Technology

The liners used in pipe relining are made from flexible materials like polyester or epoxy resins that are specially engineered to repair damaged pipes. These liners are impregnated with a thermosetting resin mix then formed into tubes of particular diameters to suit different pipe sizes.

Once inserted into damaged pipe, the resin-soaked liner conforms to the shape of the original piping. It is then cured, usually with heat or steam to activate the resin. This causes the material to harden into a tough, jointless and corrosion-resistant pipe lining.

A key advantage of resin-impregnated liners is their resistance to future root intrusion. Tree roots are a major cause of pipe leaks and blockages in the Ashfield area. The protective liner acts as a barrier to prevent invasive root growth for decades after installation.

So whether your property is plagued by cracked and eroding pipes or root infestations causing drain blockages, resin-lined pipe relining provides an effective and permanent solution more than without needing full pipe replacement.

Robotic Pipe Cutter Usage

Remote-controlled Robotic cutters method can be used to repair by playing an integral role in the pipe relining process, particularly for pipes with complex bends, angles and junctions.

These advanced devices feature remote-controlled robotic arms equipped with specialised cutting wheels and cameras. They are designed to navigate tight pipe bends and precisely trim pipe connections to ensure a flush fit for the liner.

The precision cutting capabilities of robotic pipe cutters are crucial for repairing complex pipe layouts. Resin-soaked liners need to fully seal against existing pipe walls to cure properly and prevent leaks. Imprecise cutting at junctions or connections could leave small gaps, allowing leaks to persist post-relining.

Robotic cutters enable our team to trim pipe connections with pinpoint accuracy, ensuring the repaired pipe is perfectly fitted for each unique configuration in Ashfield homes and businesses. The cutting head can rotate 360 degrees and tilt 270 degrees to align perfectly even in convoluted or arbitrarily angled pipes.

This precision helps ensure long-lasting repairs and prevents the need for expensive replacement of entire pipe systems due to poorly fitted liners. Robotic cutters are thus indispensable for successful pipe relining projects, especially in properties with intricate pipe layouts.

Comparison to Traditional Pipe Replacement

Unlike traditional pipe replacement methods that require extensive excavation, pipe relining offers significant advantages with its minimally invasive trenchless approach suitable for heritage homes in Ashfield.

Full pipe replacement typically involves digging trenches to access and remove old piping before installing new pipes. This can damage gardens, driveways and building foundations.

In contrast, pipe relining is a no-dig solution that eliminates the need for excavation. Our flexible resin-impregnated liners are inserted into the existing pipes without excavation. This prevents property damage and is less disruptive for residents.

It also offers environmental benefits over replacement for heritage properties, as there’s no landfill waste or exposed pipe materials during relining. Furthermore, the smooth epoxy finish left by the liners enhances wastewater flow.

So for restoring your pipes quickly without destruction to landscaping or heritage-listed property structures, non-invasive pipe relining beats replacement, services that we provide. We provide proudly brought these trenchless solutions to the local area.

Environmental and Cost Considerations

Pipe relining, along with other trenchless rehabilitation methods can offer significant environmental and cost advantages over traditional pipe replacement methods.

By avoiding large excavations, pipe relining greatly reduces property damage, landfill waste, and exposure of toxic materials compared to digging up and replacing old pipes. It also minimises disruption to landscapes, driveways and building foundations.

We estimate that our pipe relining services reduce landfill waste by up to 80% compared with traditional replacement projects. Exposure to hazardous asbestos or lead materials sometimes present in old piping is also avoided.

The shorter installation time and lack of heavy machinery needed cuts labour and equipment costs as well. Pipe relining projects typically cost 30-50% less than full pipe replacement.

Offering greater efficiency than traditional methods, pipe relining is the sustainable choice for restoring your pipes. Contact the team at Ashfield Plumbing Services to discuss options suiting your property and budget.

Case Studies of Complex Pipe Relining

Below are two case studies demonstrating our successful application of trenchless technology in intricate pipe relining projects, executed by Ashfield Plumbing Services’ skilled team:

Heritage Home Underfloor Pipes

A federation-era property in Ashfield faced deteriorating underfloor clay pipes beset by cracks and root penetration. Access was highly limited. After inspecting the complex layout with CCTV cameras, we deployed 95 metres of resin-imbued liner across several pipe branches, employing robotic cutters to traverse all bends.

The outcome was a fully reinstated hot water flow achieved without excavation, adeptly resolving the drainage problems. The owners saved thousands compared to replacement and avoided potential destruction of their beautiful heritage home.

Commercial Building Drainage Network

A commercial building had drainage issues across multiple levels caused by deteriorating 75-year old cast iron plumbing. Rather than jackhammering through thick concrete floors, our team relined 225 metres of pipework up to 150mm diameter using inversion lining and pull-in place techniques.

In spite of challenging access and a network featuring 25 complex bends and 4 junctions, our team accomplished the relining of all three levels within just two days, without interrupting business operations. Pipe relining provided major cost and time savings.

Contact Ashfield Plumbing Services today for more examples of our expertise in complex drain repair projects. With over 25 years of expertise, we tackle the most difficult pipe layouts.

Frequently Asked Questions

What types of pipes can be relined?

We can reline drain pipes made from clay, concrete, PVC, cast iron, galvanised steel, and some ABS materials. For a pipe to be eligible for relining, it must retain a minimum of 50% structural integrity, enabling efficient remediation of cracks and leaks, as well as the repair of fractured sections.

How long do relined pipes last?

Correctly installed pipe liners are designed to last 50 years or more. The seamless epoxy barrier is highly durable, prevents further corrosion and stops root intrusion.

How much does pipe relining cost compared to replacement?

Generally, pipe relining costs about 30-50% less than complete pipe replacement. Exact costs depend on the length and diameter of pipes being repaired but relining eliminates the need for new materials, extensive excavation and restoration work.

How long does the pipe relining process take?

Most pipe relining projects take 1-3 days with little to no interruption for residents or businesses. The existing pipes remain in use until the liner is inflated and the curing process begins, effectively repairing the damaged pipes. This is far faster than replacing an entire pipe system.

What about access and restoring connections?

Our team opens small access points to feed in liners and monitor curing. Robotic cutters precisely restore lateral connections without the need for digging. Upon completion of the relining, any access openings are meticulously restored.

News & Information

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