Household drains and sewers only are given consideration if they aren’t working. Plugged up drains are very frustrating. Older homes may have cast iron drains with lead sealed joints. All modern construction uses black ABS or PVC pipe for drains. Generally speaking, you are responsible for drainage systems from your home to the community sewer system connection. Over time many materials were used in drains; clay piping, cast iron, lead and plastic standout. Because of environmental laws lead in plumbing is a thing of the past. Even copper piping joints are sealed with non-lead solder.
Types of Plumbing Pipes Materials
• Cast iron: this is a pre-1960 material. Found in most vertical drains and sometimes used in horizontal and vent stacks. Strong, but subject to corrosion. Repair usually involves replacement with plastic piping. Most was painted black.
• Galvanized steel: galvanized steel is coated with a zinc, a sacrificial anti-corrosion system. The zinc corrodes until it is used up, then the steel starts to rust. Good for about 5 decades, generally replaced with plastic. Dull silvery color is galvanized pipe.
• ABS started being used around 1975, is a relatively low cost, easy to repair material to metal pipes. Called ‘black piping’. It has not proved as durable as first thought. In fact, in some jurisdictions it is banned from use in new construction.
• PVC is the primary residential drain material used both within the home and outside drainage systems. CPVC is a heat resistant material for carrying hot water. Manufacture of CPVC is environmentally controversial.
• Polypropylene pipe or PP is durable and water safe.
• Interior metal pipes are usually nickel plated copper. The white plastic pipe is PVC or CPVC.
Fiber Optic Camera Drain Inspection
Knowing the drain material will dictate the method best for opening the drain. Homes more than 50 years old will probably be coming due for drainpipe replacements, a labor intensive and thus expensive proposition. One of the new and upcoming technologies used in drainpipe maintenance is using fiber optic cameras to inspect drain systems. The most accurate and effective drain troubleshooting aid available to the plumber the video inspection can create a visual record of any problems that are existing and document potential future drain failure areas. This will allow for informed decisions on how to proceed further, either clearing obstructions or pipe replacement.
Plumbing Snakes, Augers & Hydro Jet Drain Cleaning
Some drains can be repaired by inserting a liner, usually epoxy or plastic based, others will need replacement.
Two primary systems exist for clearing drains not using chemicals. Mechanically using plumbing snakes and augers and hydraulic using hydro jetting by pushing water at about 3500 psi through the drains, very effective but may cause problems on older pipes. Auger heads need to be matched to the drainpipe material or damage can result. Newer system uses air to power the cleaning heads.
Drain & Sewer Pipe Cleaning, Unclogging & More in Staten Island, Maspeth, Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Yonkers, Queens, NYC Boroughs, New York City NY
The Original $49.95 Plumber specializes in drain problems. Our expertise covers all drains typically found in a residence or commercial building. We have fiber optic inspection equipment and can use auger or hydro jetting to clear drains. Call us today for all your plumbing drainage needs.