Are you having problems with your sewer line and wondering about trenchless sewer line repair cost? If so, you’ve come to the right place! We’re going to go over the costs of different trenchless methods and talk about how to find a contractor in your area who performs this type of sewer repair work.

But, before we get into the costs associated with using trenchless technologies to fix broken sewers, we should give you a bit of background about this method of fixing damaged drainage pipes.


What is trenchless sewer repair?

We could sum it up in one sentence: Fixing damaged sewers using trenchless methods means repairing damaged drainage pipe faster and with a lot less digging than conventional methods.

Of course, there’s more to it than this. But, that’s the basic idea. When we use trenchless methods we don’t normally need to reroute traffic or dig up anyone’s expensive landscaping design. It usually just requires digging a couple of 4ft x 4ft pits so we can get access to the damaged pipe.

So, that’s it in a nutshell. For more in-depth information check out our article What You Need To Know About Trenchless Sewer Repair.  

Now, let’s talk about the cost of trenchless sewer line repair.


What determines the cost of trenchless repair?

How a sewer repair contractor determines what to charge you depends upon…

  • Your geographic location
  • The trenchless technique used
  • The size and shape of the pipe
  • The location of the pipe
  • The condition of the pipe

Let’s look at each one of these in more detail.


Your geographic location

Some cities and states are simply more expensive than others. If you live in one of these areas you’re going to pay more for trenchless sewer repair.


The trenchless technique used

Each technique is different. Therefore, the costs associated with them are going to differ. Our guide, Trenchless sewer repair: The pros and cons, will give you a lot of information about the various trenchless methods.


The size and shape of the pipe

The size of the pipe can also factor in. Sometimes, smaller pipes are harder to work with and this could increase the cost of the repair. There are some companies out there who charge more for 2-inch pipe than they do 8-inch pipe for this reason. Of course, larger pipes will usually cost more to fix just because there are more materials involved.

The shape of the pipe can also affect the cost. Sometimes, if there are too many bends in the pipe the contractor will need to create another access point (i.e. hole). For example, with structural pipe lining, the liner can go around several 45 and 90-degree bends. However, if there are too many bends the liner will get tangled. So, another access point is necessary and this increases the cost.


The location of the pipe

Trenchless sewer repair is minimally-invasive. Therefore, contractors do still need to dig access holes.

This means that if the damaged pipe is located under landscaping or a swimming pool, it could present a problem. In some cases, an access point might even need to be dug from inside your home. However, in many cases the trenchless sewer repair can be done with only minimal digging in landscaped (easy to fix) areas.

Another factor to consider is whether or not there are any utility lines running under your property. This is a tricky situation that could even be dangerous if handled incorrectly.


The condition of the pipe

Structural issues in the pipe can affect the cost.  For example, if the pipe is collapsed or back pitched (Back pitched means the wastewater is flowing toward your home instead of away from it)those sections will need to be dug up in order to repair them. This extra work increases the cost.

However, the condition of the pipe doesn’t usually determine the cost of the repair. The condition determines whether or not trenchless methods will even work to repair the damage.


Additional costs

Before any work begins, contractors need to know the condition of your damaged pipe because it could determine which technique they’ll use to fix it. This is done via a sewer inspection camera.

Some companies do free sewer inspections, some charge for them, while others will credit back the cost of the inspection if you use them for the repair.

Before a pipe can be repaired using trenchless methods it needs to be cleaned and prepped. Some contractors offer a flat rate for this cleaning (although this isn’t as common as it once was), while others charge more if the pipe has heavy buildup and corrosion.

Another thing that affects the price is the number of ‘’tie-ins’’ or branches that will need to be robotically reinstated.

Finally, there’s the cost of repairing any damage caused by digging. This is more of an issue with conventional sewer repair methods. However, even trenchless methods can sometimes damage property.


Trenchless sewer line repair cost vs conventional methods

Pipe lining – From $135.00 to $185.00 per linear foot

Pipe bursting – From $145.00-$195.00 per linear foot

Spray lining or brush coating – From $200-$285 per linear foot

Conventional methods – Usually around $175.00 per linear foot and this includes replacing the grass. It does not include the cost of replacing any damaged interior finishes such as tile, walls, paint, or the cost of staying in a hotel while the repairs are going on.


How to find a contractor to do trenchless sewer repair

Not all sewer repair contractors are qualified to use trenchless methods. When you find one who does trenchless work you’ll need to make sure they didn’t ride into town last night and set up shop. This is important because the equipment necessary to do trenchless sewer repair is extremely expensive. You don’t want to hire a contractor who doesn’t own the equipment. Owning the trenchless equipment is a sign a contractor isn’t a fly-by-night operator.

Ask them what kind of experience they have using trenchless methods. How many years have they been in business? Are they both licensed and insured?

Make sure you get an estimate in writing. It should describe what work will be done, the materials used, who pays for any necessary permits (and who is responsible for getting the permits), the total cost, and the start and finish dates.

Sewer Pros is a licensed and insured sewer repair and replacement contractor in Los Angeles and Orange County qualified to use trenchless methods to fix your damaged pipes. Contact us today!