When It Comes To Plumbing & Leak Detection,
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Serving Texas Since 1984.
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USA Under Slab Plumbing Repairs
Our specialty is tunneling under slab foundations. We repair and/or replace the plumbing system under a concrete slab foundation. The work is difficult and should only be performed by plumbing contractors with experience in this specific area. All qualified plumbers have the knowledge and experience to fix leaky toilets and dishwashers. But tunneling under thick concrete slab foundations, repairing or replacing sewer and drain lines, and re-packing (backfilling) excavated tunnels requires specific skills and knowledge. It is labor intensive, difficult work and it must be done properly without taking shortcuts. An excavated tunnel that is improperly backfilled is problematic and could lead to future foundation and plumbing problems.
We have been USA Under Slab Plumbing Repair specialists in Houston for more than 30+ years. That is a lot of plumbing experience. The integrity of your plumbing system, and the home’s foundation, is of highest importance to us. Should you suspect the presence of an under slab leak or want our leak detection service, then call us today at 346-347-3500 for an inspection and estimate.
Causes of Broken Sewer and Drain Lines
Broken sewer and drain lines are usually caused by soil movement. This includes soil settlement due to leaking drain pipes and improper soil compaction by the original builder. A major cause of broken sewer lines is expansion and contraction of the clay soils that surround the drain and sewer lines. And for homes and properties that are older than 50 years of age, the concrete or cast iron pipes have simply reached the end of their useful lives. Older concrete and cast iron drain lines are susceptible to breakage, collapse, and root incursion.
Repairing or Replacing Under Slab Plumbing Lines
There are only two ways to gain access to under slab drain lines. The first method is to jackhammer an opening or channel through the concrete foundation from above. Then the opening must be dug two to four feet under the foundation slab to reach the sewer and drain pipes. In general we only use this method in unusual circumstances or when direct access is preferable. This method will require repair of interior floors and the foundation slab after plumbing repairs. Generally, we do not want to lessen the structural integrity of the concrete slab foundation with jackhammered openings or channels. Therefore, we use this method less frequently.
We prefer to gain access to the under slab drain lines by digging a tunnel under the slab foundation. It measures approximately three feet by three feet and is large enough for a man to replace or repair under slab drain lines. This is the most labor intensive part of the process. After repairs or replacements are made the tunnel is backfilled and compacted. This last step is critical because the slab foundation is supported by the soil underneath. If the soil backfill process is done poorly then the slab foundation is lacking some degree of support that could be a problem in the future.
Pier and Beam Foundations
Yes, we also repair and replace drain lines under homes and buildings that rest on pier and beam foundations. Usually this work is easier and faster because the plumber has access and a sufficient working area to repair the plumbing system under the house or building. In these cases there is no tunneling – resulting in a lower overall cost for the building owner.