bad plumbing news

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I had a plumber here today that says I have to have my main line dug up & replaced. He tried for over an hour to use the roto-rooter thing, and then charged me nothing because he couldn't clear it.
So I believe him.
BUT--his company's estimate for digging this up (entails ruining my driveway and does NOT include the cost of replacing it!) was $6200!!!!!
I'm obviously going to call around first thing in the morning. This must be done, I can't use the plumbing at all!
Questions:
Has anyone lived through this nightmare before? Have you any advice for me? I've always worried that this was a scam perpetrated by plumbers but am less doubtful in my case as I've had plumbing problems for some time. The house is old (over 100 years) and the cast iron pipes are falling apart.
What did it cost you?
Who do I call to replace my asphalt driveway (sob)? How much might that cost? It's about 25 feet long, one car width.
Thanks. HELP!
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Call another plumber. Also, you can have the inside of your line videotaped to see what is causing the blockage. My house is 75 years old and the cast iron was shot when I had it replaced last year.

$3000 for what's under the house and $7000 for the run from the house to the main.

No idea.
Other options are to just replace the portion of line that is broken or to use a trenchless sewer replacement (can only be done in some instances). The trenchless will cost more, but you will save having to put in a new driveway. Of course, if your driveway needs replacing soon anyway then maybe do it now.
Dimitri
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Other than that how was your day?
wrote:

me?
less
house
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Rotten. In trying to clean out the main line with sulfuric acid (toilet was off & I was pouring it down the pipe) I splashed it on my face, even though I knew the dangers and have used it before and was being very careful.
I had the main water turned off because the valve shutting off the inflow to the toilet doesn't shut off completely. So in agony I dashed to the basement to turn on the water, knowing full well that I'd have some "leakage" to clean up when I got back upstairs.
I threw as much water on my face as I could before I dashed back downstairs to turn off the water. I knew I was in trouble when I saw water dripping into the basement through the cracks in the floor.
As I rushed upstairs the water met me running down the stairs. I cleaned up as quick as I could while I phoned the doctor to see what to do. Meantime, I was in real pain!
I hied me to the ER as commanded where I will now probably owe a fortune for the minimal treatment received.
The good news? It missed my eyes.
The other bad news? The plumber broke the main stack as he was routing it out.
This is all true, I lie not.
So, how was your day?

for
that
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Betsy, You need a huge hug, girl! And a good cry....I'm sending a cyber one your way. (a stiff drink would help as well......)
Art..............
snipped-for-privacy@croton10520.com

am
old
to
or
soon
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Thanks. I've been remarkably peaceful about the whole thing (power of prayer!) but did manage to break into tears in the emergency room because I was so embarrassed :(
Thanks to everyone for the suggestions. I'm going to start making calls right now!

advice
but
The
house
to
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:-(
wish you were close i would come try to help

apart.
years
might
broken
having
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- Betsy -

because I

calls
- Nehmo - How bad were the burns?
--
*********************
* Nehmo Sergheyev *
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I don't recommend getting burned.
They are only superficial (1st degree but blistered) but really ugly, and swollen. I feel really self-conscious going even to the food store! I've got to keep salve on them to keep them from getting dry because then they hurt.

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Well, that was nice of him.

Just because he's a nice guy, doesn't make him right in his diagnosis.

Very smart. Look specifically for a company that has a remote camera diagnosis system and knows how to use it.

Maybe, maybe not. A camera is the smart way to be sure. Replacing the main line may or may not fix the problem, or may be way overkill.

Look in the yellow pages under paving.
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Betsy wrote:

had that happen to my parents house and grandparents house the same year. My grandparents house the bill was about $2k. All that needed fixing was a collapsed distribution box in the leaching field. Grandma never noticed before she died as she was living alone in a five bedroom home. parents house we noticed for about a year prior to having it diagnosed. Mostly it manifested as slow draining from the shower, and once in a while, it backed up in the downstairs bathroom. Problem was that the leaching field got all messed up with tree roots from the trees the town had planted along the road to add shade to the road. it unfortunately triggered the state septic system law, and we had to replace the whole system to bring it up to current code. Both houses were built in 1969 and 70 by the same buiilder.

Talk to the excavator person. They will often suggest a reasonable contractor. The plumbing contractor may include patching the driveway in the overall cost, so ask.
--Dale
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I was under the assumption he was talking about the water feed line? Maybe not...
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Mark wrote:

only thing I've ever heard of roto-rooters being used on was sewerage lines.
--Dale
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We had a sewer lateral failure a couple of years ago, also under a driveway. We had a company replace it using the trenchless method--one small excavation at the house and one at the street, and then a new pipe is pulled in through the old one. Cost was $3000 and it ran about 50 feet. It was done in one day and then I poured new concrete to replace the areas where they demo'd to excavate. Look in the yellow pages under 'sewer contractors' and see who has trenchless equipment. It's fairly new in residential repair and lots of contractors are getting into it and you should find that there's plenty of competition.
In the meantime, you need to stay somewhere else.
--
David Meiland
Friday Harbor, WA
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Where I live, the town is responsible for everything before the water meter. Give your town a call and find out.

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You say your main line runs under the driveway, does the replacement line need to take the same route or can it be re-installed alongside it, causing minimal or no driveway damage?
If the line runs to the street, consider replacing the probably-just-as-old water main as a package deal.
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We're discussing a sewer outlet main here, not a water inlet main. I sure hope your sewer main has nothing to do with your water meter!
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On Wed, 25 Feb 2004 14:56:11 +0000 (UTC), snipped-for-privacy@kamens.brookline.ma.us (Jonathan Kamens) wrote:

It looks like we're discussing both. Others are clearly quoting prices from having their main feed replaced.
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Not that I see. We're all talking sewer lines.
Dimitri
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yes I had the same thing almost. The main plumbing line to the street needed to be dug up and a six foot piece of the pipe replaced. They were able to locate the place that needed to be dug up so they didnt need to dig up anything other than the right spot. Also in wisconsin so the pipe was like 10 feet of so underground. The had do remove a small patch of concrete sidewalk and replace it. They also installed a cleanout. Total cost 1300 dollars. It took one full day and some small touch up the next day. They even put sod over the grass they removed badger state plumbing eau claire wisconsin

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