Corrosion of cast iron drain, waste and vent (DWV) piping can become a problem in older properties. In fact, age-related DWV piping issues can often be severe, depending on the external environmental conditions and the corrosiveness of the effluent and gasses within the pipes. As a result, major blockages and even complete structural failure are not uncommon. Timely cast iron pipe replacement will prevent recurring problems, system failure, extensive damage and toxic water contamination.
What Happens as DWV Pipes Age?
As cast iron and steel pipes age, rust forms on the inside, creating a crust of “tubercules.” Tuberculation slows water flow, eroding the metal and increasing the chances of corrosion. Corrosion appears in numerous forms: long cracks can form on horizontal sections, pipes can simply disintegrate in certain sections, fitting joints can often be the problem, and occasionally pipes become completely blocked because they have never been properly maintained. In addition there is a misconception that the vent piping is ok and just the waste pipes need replacement, but often the vent side is the worst part of the system.
The key to protecting your property? Make sure your staff knows the telltale signs of a much bigger problem. Knowing what to look for can help avoid excessive blockages, total system failure, and extensive water damage.
If your property is more than 25 years old and you’re experiencing repeated backups, slow draining, or unexplainable odors, we recommend a camera inspection of the lines to suss out any issues.
Another best practice is to keep a simple record to document and report leaks and blockages, reviewing them every quarter. This record will help you determine when pipe replacement makes sense.
When the Problem Can No Longer Be Ignored
Eventually all drain and waste systems need to be replaced. And when that’s the case, SageWater’s One Call Repipe solution takes care of everything, from planning and estimating to implementation, communications, and project management. We minimize disruption and maximize efficiency.