There are a few different types of drain pipes commonly used in Australia. Each has their own different strengths and weaknesses, and vary in their use.
Clay or earthenware drain pipes:
The drain pipe to the right is a typical 100mm diameter clay sewer pipe 1200mm in length and weights approximately 30kg. Needless to say these old clay pipes are very heavy, rigid and brittle. The importance of a solid dry base for these types of traditional clay drain pipes to rest on is paramount to the stability and proper functioning of the drainage system.
When you mix water with dry dirt you get mud! When a drain leaks into the environment surrounding the pipe the supporting ground around and under the pipe turns to mud and the heavy clay pipes start to sink further into the ground. As these clay pipes are very rigid and brittle it only takes a small shift for the pipe work to start breaking and cracking and for joints to separate which in turn produces more leakage and stimulates more tree roots.
As mentioned above drainage systems are installed underground at grade or sloping down hill which means that when a pipe leaks at an already damage section the water leaking from the pipe starts to run down and under the outside of the pipe inside the trench and starts to undermine and destroy any good sections of pipe work downstream. This is an insidious process that usually develops over a long period of time and unfortunately in many cases renders the drain unserviceable with complete rehabilitation being the only long term solution.
PVC or plastic pipes:
PVC or plastic drainage pipes have been in use in Australia now for over 40 years and provided these types of pipes are installed correctly they will give trouble free service for a life time. Unfortunately from time to time we find PVC pipes that have been damaged due to ground movement, building or landscaping works or even through substandard installation. In any case, the results are the same as with damaged clay or earthenware pipes. The system leaks into the environment stimulating tree root intrusion leading to blockages and further damage to valuable pipe work and property.
If you already know what kind of pipes you have, you can let us know during your call to us. Otherwise, our excavation team will diagnose your pipes on site and will be equipped to rectify any problems you have.