Occasionally we get confronted with sewer blockages that just can’t be unclogged. Our expert plumbers recently faced this situation at a home in Essendon where there had been a previous history of the property boundary trap clogging up and blocking the sewer pipes to the home.
Previous CCTV footage of the drain showed that the earthenware pipe was cracked on the junction at the property lead off and there was suspected damage to the boundary trap as well.
Hard work and persistence utilising the high-pressure water jet and sewer machine, aka sewer snake, meant our professional plumbers managed to get the drain running again. However, this was only going to be temporary, so it was explained to the owners that the drain will block again sooner rather than later.
This Case Study shows how our expert plumbers fixed the drain permanently.
Inspection & Explanation to Client
Our professional plumbing estimator explained the process to the owners, which involved digging up the drain and the costs associated with the work. As it was a plumbing emergency in Melbourne, we could start the job immediately. The owners agreed the work needed to be done and after seeing the CCTV footage and having it explained to them, they clearly understood it couldn’t wait.
The local water authority was notified as you must lodge a ‘consent to connect’ application with them prior to working on any below ground drainage system. A consent to connect ID was given and works were ready to start.
Note: At Essendon Plumbing Services we always ere on the side of caution, we would never advise for major works to be carried out if our extensive knowledge of plumbing and drainage tells us it’s not required. We find with blocked drains in Melbourne, our expert plumbers can unclog them, provide CCTV footage of your clear drain and be on their way within 2hours, without the need to dig up drains.
Unfortunately, in this case the boundary shaft and trap needed to be dug up by a licensed master plumber and replaced. This meant that the owners would not have access to their toilet for 24hours, so we organised the delivery of a site toilet while plumbing drainage works were being carried out.
The depth of the property boundary trap was approx. 2.8m deep, so trench shoring was required to keep our plumbers safe while works were being conducted. Our plumbers brought in their Caterpillar mini excavator which was perfectly suited to the tight situation our plumbers were operating in. Excavated dirt was removed from site while we were digging to keep the site safe and clean and our trench shoring soldier sets were installed as we went down.
Once fully excavated the boundary trap was exposed by hand to prevent any damage to the connecting pipework. Now that the old earthenware sewer pipe was exposed, we could remove the old pipe and prepare for the installation of a new UPVC boundary trap and shaft and connect the new pipe work back to the existing.
Prior to connecting the pipework up, our plumbers ran the CCTV camera back up the home drainage system and into the water authorities drain to make sure there were no other breaks, tree roots in drains or damaged sections of pipes. The CCTV showed NO defects so the owners could rest assured no further extensive plumbing works needed to be carried out.
Replacing, Testing & Site Clean Up
Both the sewer boundary trap and shaft were replaced and made test ready for our VBA certificate of compliance below ground drainage inspection, which was booked for the following morning.
After the inspection was completed, backfill and compaction commenced until the team got back up to ground level and the site was cleaned ready for handover.
The owners were extremely happy with the outcome, so the temporary toilet was removed, and our team of plumbers were off to their next assignment.
Below Ground Drainage Inspections
When carrying out work on below ground drainage systems in Victoria you must book a below ground drainage inspection through the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) prior to backfilling the excavation. Plumbers must book a time for the inspection on the hour and if your inspector doesn’t turn up within 30mins of your booking time, you are free to commence backfilling the excavation.
On completion of the job, and within 5 working days, a completed and lodged certificate of compliance must be handed over to the customer giving them peace of mind the work has been completed by a licensed plumber. This certificate carries a VBA 6-year guarantee against workmanship. Only a licensed plumber in Melbourne can issue a Certificate of Compliance, registered plumbers CANNOT issue this certificate.
At Essendon Plumbing Services, all our plumbers are Licensed Master Plumbers who offer all our customers the peace of mind of a lifetime customer satisfaction guarantee.