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Old 01-18-2012, 08:09 PM   #1
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finding a sewer line


How do I find the sewer pipe coming from under my house to the street? I know where it leaves and passes through the foundation, but the problem is that there is a 10 foot concrete porch added to the front of the house. I am assuming the line is straight, but it may not be. At my parents house, they had to replace the sewer line a few years ago. Their sewer line curved significantly to the left after it left the foundation of the house, and connected to the street way off along the edge of the property line. Trenchless sewer line replacement requires that a second hold be dug at the edge of the street to pull the new lining through, but in order to dig that hole they must know where the connection to the sewer pipe under the street is. Would any municipal sewer maps show something like this?

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Old 01-18-2012, 08:24 PM   #2
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finding a sewer line


Start with the largest and lowest pipe connection IN the house at the front wall.
This is usually a clean out. The water shut off valve is usually nearby too.

Then go outside by the curb and find the water meter cover.
Look back at the house and imagine a line between the meter and the pipe..

Is the porch in the way? Close? Maybe? If so... get a city site plat to confirm.
If not.... that line will be real close to where the trench you'll need to dig is.


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Old 01-18-2012, 08:24 PM   #3
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finding a sewer line


could use a camera or pipe locator
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:29 PM   #4
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finding a sewer line


Did you hire someone to do this work? If they can't locate underground utilities, then find someone else. That is a skill that anyone that works underground must have.
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:42 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ben's plumbing View Post
could use a camera or pipe locator

Camera and locator no guessing.
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:53 PM   #6
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finding a sewer line


I haven't hired anyone yet, but I have been down under the house replacing the old cast iron stuff with PVC. The fresh water line goes through the foundation in the same spot as the sewer line. So, typically do these lines stay together all the way to the street? If so, then I'm set, because I know where the water meter is. Here's a picture of the house. The sewer line passes through the foundation just underneath the middle window. The water meter is at the end of the sidewalk by the light post
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:58 PM   #7
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So, typically do these lines stay together all the way to the street? Usually.
If so, then I'm set... Probably.
Depths will vary by region but this is a typical set up:
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:59 PM   #8
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well you would think they go straight....but your still guessing...the company you choose they should equiptment to do this....make sure you ask...or get a locator or camera....then your sure...ben
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:06 PM   #9
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well you would think they go straight... but your still guessing
Too true. Especially if the house once had a septic in the rear...
so the plumbers have to do a 180 degree loop de loop bend from the rear of the house around the side then out to the new sewer pipe in the street.
---

But AV... plumbers have to be getting paid extra to do crazy stuff like that.
99% of the time it's gonna be as short and as straight a run as they can do.
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:33 PM   #10
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finding a sewer line


You're hiring plumbers to burst or line your pipe-- They should locate it so they know the depth they need to dig the entrance pit. How else will they give an accurate labor bid?
My area has records on file back to the early 1900's, you may not be so lucky. Call your waste management/sewer dept.
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Old 01-19-2012, 03:52 PM   #11
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I was just wondering what method THEY used to determine where the pipe was. Do they just go on maps / survey? Or when they cam the pipe, does the head have something like an RF transmitter or something that allows them to track it at ground level, or do they just guess, and start digging holes!
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Old 01-19-2012, 04:18 PM   #12
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I was just wondering what method THEY used to determine where the pipe was.
With a wide backhoe bucket you don't need to be real accurate
(and do the new copper water service too if you do have a trench dug)
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Old 01-19-2012, 04:49 PM   #13
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finding a sewer line


Check with your citys public works dept to see if they have a sewer card for your address
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Old 01-19-2012, 04:52 PM   #14
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If all else fails find the oldest plumber you have in town and give him 2 pieces of bent wire,he'll be able to find it for ya!
I can usually get within a foot of the trench using the old voodo technique!
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Old 01-19-2012, 06:04 PM   #15
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finding a sewer line


For $125, I had a guy come out with a radio transmitter attached to a fish tape. He snaked the line with the transmitter and used receiver wand to find the exact location of the pipe.

Look up utility locator companies and/or drain camera companies and start calling around.

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