Diamond Certified Companies are Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise.

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Diamond certified companies are top rated and guaranteed

Why Trust Diamond Certified Sewer Line Contractors Rated Highest in Quality?

Photo: Superior Plumbing & Drain Cleaning Services (2012)

CONCORD—You are the customer. If your goal is to choose a sewer line contractor that will deliver high customer satisfaction and quality, you’ll feel confident in choosing a Diamond Certified sewer line company. Each has been rated Highest in Quality in the most accurate ratings process anywhere. And you’re always backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. Here’s why the Diamond Certified ratings and certification process will help you find a top-rated sewer line specialist and is unparalleled in its accuracy, rigor and usefulness:

1) Accuracy: All research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed, so you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews.

2) Statistical Reliability: A large random sample of past customers is surveyed on an ongoing basis so the research results you see truly reflect a Diamond Certified company’s top-rated status.

3) Full Disclosure: By clicking the name of a company above you’ll see the exact rating results in charts and read verbatim survey responses as well as researched articles on each qualified company.

4) Guaranteed: Your purchase is backed up with mediation and the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you can choose with confidence.

Click on the name of a Diamond Certified company above to read ratings results, researched articles and verbatim customer survey responses to help you make an informed decision.

More than 200,000 customers of local companies have been interviewed in live telephone calls, and only companies that score Highest in Quality in customer satisfaction–a 90+ on a 100 scale–as well as pass all of the credential-based ratings earn Diamond Certified. By requiring such a high score to qualify, the Diamond Certified program eliminates mediocre and poorly performing companies. Read detailed information about the ratings and certification process.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTORS IN THE Contra Costa County – Sewer Line Contractor CATEGORY

Ray Ramirez is president of General Plumbing and Rooter, a Diamond Certified company since 2014. He can be reached at (925) 388-6997 or by email.

Ray Ramirez

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Ray Ramirez: A Pipeline of Opportunity

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Program Reporter

ANTIOCH — After several years in the restaurant business, Ray Ramirez was longing for a change of pace, so when an opportunity arose to enter a new vocation, he didn’t take it lightly. “I was working in a restaurant and wasn’t really happy,” he remembers. “I wanted to get into a trade like HVAC or electrical, but I was having a hard time finding a company that would take me on. Finally, I was given an opportunity to apprentice with a plumbing company, which is what led me to where I am today.”

As president of General Plumbing and Rooter, Ray embraces multiple aspects of his career. “I never liked being stuck in one place, so I appreciate that plumbing allows me to go to different places throughout the day,” he says. “I’m also very interested in the technological aspects of the job, and I enjoy staying up-to-date with the latest industry innovations.”

Originally from Mexico, Ray came to the United States at the age of 18. Today, as a resident of Pleasant Hill (where he lives with his wife, Alicia, and their children, Anahi and Eric), he says he appreciates the central proximity of his adopted hometown. “My family and I like going on short trips to nearby places like San Francisco, Monterey, Santa Cruz and Reno.” Ray also enjoys staying active with hobbies like soccer and auto restoration. “I’ve been playing soccer since I was a kid, and I still play two or three times a week, which helps keep me in shape,” he says. “Another hobby that I recently started with my son is restoring old cars. Our first project is a ’64 Chevy pickup, which is currently in pieces. I’m not sure how we’re going to get it back together, but I guess that’s why we have the Internet!”

In regard to his professional career, Ray espouses the importance of deriving satisfaction from his livelihood. “If you’re not happy in your work, you’re basically wasting time and energy, so it’s important to make an effort to improve your situation,” he says. “I’ve been there myself—I was very unhappy while working in the restaurant business, but now that I’ve found something I enjoy, it gives me a feeling of satisfaction and purpose.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he could retire tomorrow, Ray says he’d do some volunteer work, as well as spend more time on his recently acquired hobby. “I’d do some volunteering with Habitat for Humanity and other organizations that benefit those in need. I’d also like to get more involved in buying and restoring old cars.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?
A: Mexico. Even though I’m from there, there are so many parts of it I’d like to see.

Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: Chili’s in Pleasant Hill.

Q: What’s a website you visit on a daily basis?
A: Craigslist. It’s a good place to browse classic cars and find parts.

Q: How do you like your eggs?
A: Over medium.

Q: What was your favorite toy as a child?
A: My soccer ball.

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The Benefits of Trenchless Sewer Line Replacement

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ANTIOCH — When a sewer problem strikes, it often results in the need for sewer line repair or replacement. While traditional methodology requires a plumber to excavate the entire line—an expensive, time-intensive process that often leaves the customer’s yard in… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Trenchless Sewer Replacement

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Complete Video Transcription:

ANTIOCH — Host, Sarah Rutan: When it comes to sewer line repairs and replacement, a modern innovation has turned a once-arduous job into a relatively simple… Read more

Ricardo Lopez is president of Superior Plumbing & Drain Cleaning Services, a Diamond Certified company since 2012. He can be reached at (925) 331-0363 or by email.

Ricardo Lopez

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Ricardo Lopez: A Rewarding Career

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

RICHMOND — Ricardo Lopez was initially drawn to the plumbing trade by the pay, but it wasn’t long before he discovered the true rewards his career provided. “I was told that plumbers made good money, so I decided to start an apprenticeship with a local company,” he remembers. “The pay was good, but what I really liked about the job was the opportunity to help people, especially elderly customers who are vulnerable to being taken advantage of. It felt very rewarding to be able to take care of people and provide an honest service. After five years working in the field, I decided to found my own business in 2002.”

Today, as owner of Superior Plumbing & Drain Cleaning Services, Ricardo says his first priority is providing top-notch customer service. “I personally train each of our employees in the way we present ourselves and serve our customers. To me, the most important thing is making sure every customer is satisfied, both with the work itself and the professionalism of our technicians.”

Originally from El Salvador, Ricardo resides today in Antioch with his wife, Fatima, and their two children. Outside of work, he spends his free time engaged in a variety of active pastimes. “My kids like the water, so we do a lot of swimming and boating at local lakes,” he says. “We also like to play basketball and soccer.” Additionally, Ricardo and his family make a point of traveling two to three times each year. “We regularly vacation at places like Cancun and Belize. Also, since my wife is from Mexico, we go to Guadalajara every January to see her family and take part in the holiday festivities.”

In regard to his professional career, Ricardo espouses the importance of taking care of people. “In addition to taking care of our clients, I believe in taking care of our employees,” he explains. “I try to make sure everyone who works for me is well-compensated and happy in their job. After all, when your employees are happy, they’re more likely to pass that on to customers in the form of good service, so it’s a great investment all in all.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Ricardo says he’d take an extended vacation. “I would take a month-long trip with my family, maybe to Cancun or my home country of El Salvador. It’d be nice to just take some time to relax and recuperate by the beach.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What’s your favorite sports team?
A: The San Francisco Giants.

Q: Are you an early bird or a night owl?
A: An early bird.

Q: Do you collect anything?
A: CDs and digital music.

Q: What kinds of music do you like?
A: I like all kinds, especially upbeat music because I’m a happy person.

Q: What’s your favorite snack?
A: Granola bars.

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A Solution for Water Pressure Issues

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RICHMOND — If your home’s faucets, showerheads, and toilets are constantly dripping and running, it might be time to check your home’s water pressure. The recommended water pressure for residential homes is between 60 and 80 psi, so if yours reads… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Addressing Water Pressure Issues

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Complete Video Transcription:

RICHMOND — Host, Sarah Rutan: If your home’s plumbing fixtures are constantly running or dripping, this may be the result of a water pressure issue. To… Read more

SELECTED PHOTOS FROM THESE TOP RATED COMPANIES

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INDUSTRY INFORMATION AND RESEARCHED ARTICLES BY THE DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESOURCE

  • Kohler

  • Lennox

  • Moen

  • TOTO

  • Daiken

  • Mitsubishi

  • Noritz

  • QuietCool

industrial sewer lines
residential septic lines
industrial septic lines
industrial septic lines
residential sewer pipes
commercial sewer lines

sewer line repair
sewer line replacement
sewer line installation
clogged pipe cleaning
sewer pipe lining
sewer line inspection
trenchless sewer line replacement
sewer drain cleaning
septic line maintenance
sewer line tree roots removal
sewer line cleaning
sewer line repiping

Alamo
Antioch
Bay Point
Bethel Island
Blackhawk
Brentwood
Briones
Byron
Canyon
Clayton
Clyde
Concord
Cowell
Crockett
Danville
Diablo
Discovery Bay
El Cerrito
El Sobrante
Hercules
Hilltop Mall
Kensington
Knightsen
Lafayette
Los Medanos
Maltby
Martinez
Moraga
North Richmond
Oakley
Orinda
Pacheco
Pinole
Pittsburg
Pleasant Hill
Point Richmond
Port Chicago
Port Costa
Rheem Valley
Richmond
Rodeo
San Pablo
San Ramon
Tara Hills
Vine Hill
Walnut Creek
Walnut Heights
West Pittsburg

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94509
94511
94513
94514
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94520
94521
94522
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94802
94803
94804
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94806
94807
94808
94820
94850

American Backflow Prevention Association (ABPA) (www.abpa.org/)
American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) (www.aspe.org/)
American Society of Sanitary Engineering (ASSE) (www.asse-plumbing.org/)
Contractors State License Board (CSLB) (www.cslb.ca.gov)…

American Backflow Prevention Association (ABPA) (www.abpa.org/)
American Society of Plumbing Engineers (ASPE) (www.aspe.org/)
American Society of Sanitary Engineering (ASSE) (www.asse-plumbing.org/)
Contractors State License Board (CSLB) (www.cslb.ca.gov)

International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officers (IAPMO) (www.iapmo.org/)
NSF International (NSF) (www.nsf.org/)
Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association of California (PHCC) (www.caphcc.org/)
Plumbing Manufacturers International (PMI) (www.pmihome.org/)
South Bay Piping Industry (www.sbaypipe.org/)
United Association (UA) (www.ua.org/)

Know What You Want
When Do You Want to Call in a Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor?

You may not initially know that your problem is severe enough to call in a sewer line contractor. You may be hoping that you’ve just got a temporary clog. But if the problem escalates or persists, you will want to call in someone who can give you a diagnosis.

As you prepare to call in a sewer line contractor in Contra Costa County, there are some questions to ask yourself. No plumbing crisis is fun, but you might be able to face it better if you have a list of questions prepared. That way, you know what you have to focus on at the time of the crisis.

The following list of questions might be helpful.

  1. Do I want a Diamond Certified sewer line repair company that is rated best in quality and backed by the Diamond Certified Guarantee?
  2. How long has the problem been happening?
  3. Is there a pattern of recurring behavior with the problem, or is this the first time?
  4. Do I know whether my house has cleanouts or not? And where they are located?
  5. Is the problem based around a single fixture, or are multiple fixtures involved? For example, is the toilet backing up into the tub?
  6. Are there external signs of a problem, such as toilet paper in the yard?
  7. Do I use the city sewer system or do I have a septic tank?
  8. Are there trees or bushes that are growing along where the sewer line runs?
  9. Is it important to me to save a tree that is affecting my sewer line?
  10. Are my sewer lines isolated or are they close to gas lines or clean water lines?
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What To Ask In Person
Asking Your Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor Questions in Person

You are most likely to meet your Contra Costa County sewer line contractor in person when the company comes to prepare an estimate. Many situations are unique. Mostly likely the contractor will need to see your property and any landscaping to get a good idea of potential causes of the problem. Your contractor will have to get a good idea of the sewer pipe layout and where the city sewer hook-up might be.

It makes sense to expect a good sewer line contractor in Contra Costa County, including in Walnut Creek, Concord, Pittsburg, Antioch, Richmond, or Brentwood, to take a look before offering an estimate.

When the sewer line contractor comes, you may want to ask some questions so that you get a good idea of how the contractor decided on the recommendations made. Having questions prepared in advance can be helpful in the midst of a stressful situation. Some questions like the following might make sense.

 

  1. Do you think you can perform trenchless replacement here? Or will a trench be required?
  2. Can you help me locate a cleanout?
  3. If we cannot find a cleanout, or I know I don’t have one, what fixture or other option will you use to access the sewer line?
  4. How close is my property to the city sewer hook-up? Will there be extra costs to connect to it?
  5. Do you see any problems with the current landscaping and the run of the sewer line? Do I need to consider removing brush or trees?
  6. How long do you think the job will take?
  7. Can you access the site with whatever equipment you need to perform the repair?
  8. How quickly can you start the job?
  9. If you are making a repair, not a replacement, will that area of the pipe be more vulnerable to future damage?
  10. Why are you recommending a replacement – can you just repair the portion of the sewer line that is damaged?
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  • What To Ask References
    Questions for Previous Clients of Contra Costa County Sewer Line Repair Companies

    It’s best to choose a Diamond Certified sewer line contractor because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other companies can’t pass. If you want quality from a sewer line contractor in Contra Costa County and the greater Bay Area, you can have confidence choosing a Diamond Certified company. Diamond Certified reports are available online for all certified companies.

    And you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews. That’s because all research is performed in live telephone interviews of actual customers.

    If you can’t find a Diamond Certified sewer line contractor within reach, you’ll have to do some research on your own. If you do, it’s wise to call some references provided by your sewer line contractor. Keep in mind, though, that references provided to you by the sewer line contractor are not equal in value to the large random sample of customers surveyed during the Diamond Certified ratings process.

    That’s because references given to customers from companies are cherry-picked instead of randomly selected from all their customers. So the contractors will likely give you a few customers to call that they know are satisfied.

    If you do call references on your own, specifically ask for a list of the company’s 10 most recent customers. This will help avoid them giving you the names of only customers they know were satisfied.

    1. Did you have an open trench repair? Or did you use trenchless repair methods?
    2. How long has the sewer line repair or sewer line replacement been installed? Have you noticed any problems after the service visit?
    3. Did your contractor clearly explain why a replacement was required instead of a repair?
    4. What was the issue? How could you tell you needed a sewer line repair or replacement as opposed to removing a one-time block?
    5. Did you have problems with tree or brush roots? Did you remove the tree or brush as part of the solution, or are they still in place? If they are in place, are they likely to cause further problems?
    6. For any trenches or openings made on your property – were they properly filled after the job was finished? Were you satisfied with the state your property was left in?
    7. I don’t have a cleanout. Do you? If not, how was your sewer line accessed?
    8. Did the sewer line contractor work with the proper authorities to help you get any required permits?
    9. Did the sewer line contractor explain the materials being used, how long they should last, their environmental impact?
    10. Were you satisfied with the sewer line contractor’s work? Why or why not?
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  • Review Your Options
    Find and Hire a Good Sewer Line Contractor in Contra Costa County

    The Diamond Certified symbol has been awarded to companies that scored Highest in Quality in an accurate ratings process.

    It’s important to consider the following questions before deciding on the best sewer line contractor in Contra Costa County for you.

    1. Does the sewer line contractor assess the problem professionally, using cameras and other tools to identify the exactly problem?
    2. Does the sewer line contractor provide a written estimate of the work to be performed?
    3. Can the sewer line contractor offer alternatives to open trenches in my yard? Or make a sound case for why the trench method is required?
    4. Is the sewer line contractor concerned with first correctly identifying the source of the problem before making recommendations?
    5. Is the sewer line contractor licensed by the state of California?
    6. Does the sewer line contractor find it important to work within code, using the proper materials?
    7. Does the sewer line contractor work with the city or other entity to get a permit as required?
    8. Is the sewer line contractor as committed to saving my landscaping, where possible, as I am?
    9. Is the sewer line contractor committed to restoring my property to a decent condition that we agree upon?
    10. Is the sewer line contractor familiar with the city sewer system hook-up and how my line will connect to the city system?
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  • How To Work With
    Before You Decide to Hire a Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor

    When you are pondering which Contra Costa County sewer line contractor to hire, be sure to do a little background investigation. Ask several contractors for written estimates. Don’t work with a contractor who won’t give you a written estimate.

    Look for contractors who show expertise and experience in working with sewer lines. Be sure the contractor is licensed. You can check that the license is current and that there are no complaints against it by going to the Contractors State License Board (CSLB) website.

    Find a physical address for the company and verify that it is real. It’s best to have several ways to contact a firm, and a brick and mortar presence can always be a last resort. If a contractor is only available by mobile phone, carefully consider how valid it may or may not be.

    Once You’ve Found Your Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor
    Take the time to cover all the bases with your Contra Costa County sewer line contractor. Be sure you ask about how the problem was diagnosed. A camera will most often be used to pinpoint the exact problem – you should not accept “guesstimates.” A proper contractor will take the time to find the problem. If the sewer line contractor suggests several steps – such as jet cleaning the pipe before the camera is used, always ask whether there are additional charges.

    Ask your Contra Costa County sewer line contractor if the company needs to dig a trench or if other options are open. If you want trenchless techniques, ask about them. If a trench is required, be sure your sewer line contractor clearly explains why a trench is required. Be sure to agree with your sewer line contractor about the expected state of your property after the repair – holes and trenches filled and level, for example.

    Make sure you understand what part of replacing the landscaping, if any, the sewer line contractor will perform. They probably will only be responsible for filling the trenches, but make sure you understand what they will and won’t do.

    Are there trees or shrubs running along your sewer line? Do you want to save the trees or shrubs? Can the sewer line contractor remove roots that are causing the problem, for example, without killing the tree? Do the trees or brush have to be removed to prevent further recurrences of the problem?

    Be clear about whether you want to save a tree or whether you are fine with it being removed. In some cases, you may have no options. Again, it’s important to discuss your expectations with your Contra Costa County sewer line contractor, whether you live in Walnut Creek, Concord, Richmond, Pittsburg, Antioch, El Cerrito, West Pittsburg, San Ramon, or Brentwood.

    Making the Job Easier for Your Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor
    You can make the job go more easily for your Contra Costa County sewer line contractor. If possible, know the location of your cleanout or cleanouts. If you can, determine that gas pipes and clean water lines are not placed near your sewer line. If the sewer line contractor will be working from a cleanout in the house, clear the path to it. If there are weeds obstructing an outdoor cleanout, try to clear them before the job begins.

    Make sure your expectations are included in the written estimate and contract. For example, if you expect trees to be saved, get it in writing. Get as much as you can in writing before the job starts – don’t come up with new issues in the middle of the project.

    Be available to answer your sewer line contractor’s questions. If unexpected things crop up, the sewer line contractor will need to be able to get in touch with you to make decisions.

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  • Be a Good Customer
    How Can You Be a Good Sewer Line Contractor Customer?

    It’s the sewer line contractor’s responsibility put in quality sewer lines using the best possible installation techniques. But you play a big part in the success of your sewer line contractor, too.

    Here are a few simple steps you can take to be a good customer when hiring a Contra Costa County sewer line contractor.

    Be clear and upfront with the sewer line contractor. Let them know what you want from your sewer line contractor, the long-term outcome you’re expecting and specific ways they can satisfy your expectations.

    1. Remember, a friendly smile goes a long way!
    2. Before you hire a sewer line contractor in Contra Costa County, restate your expectations and goals, and reiterate to the sewer line contractor’s representative your understanding of the agreement. Most problems with local sewer line contractors occur because of a breakdown in communication. By being clear about your expectations and theirs, you can avoid most conflicts.
    3. Ask your sewer line contractor if you should call to check on the progress or if he will call you with updates.
    4. Be sure your service representative has a phone number where they can reach you at all times while they’re working on the sewer line. The work will move along more smoothly if your sewer line contractor can reach you for any necessary updates, questions or work authorizations.
    5. When your contractor contacts you, return calls promptly to keep the sewer line contractor on schedule.
    6. Pay for the sewer line contractor’s work promptly.

    Why would you want to be a good customer? Sewer line contractors in Contra Costa County appreciate customers who are straightforward, honest and easy to work with. Your good customer behavior sets the tone from your end and creates an environment conducive to a good relationship. Things may very well go smoother and any problems may be more easily resolved.

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Check The Work
Verify Your Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor’s Work Against the Estimate and Invoice

A written estimate and contract should outline precisely what is happening on your property. Get the estimate and contract written in as much detail as possible. For example: open two holes, insert PVC liner, steam liner into place, remove bladder after liner is cured, is better than: install trenchless replacement.

When there is more detail, you can be sure of what is covered and what is not. You are then in a better position to check off what has been completed and what has not been. Don’t be shy about examining the work, if you want to.

Sewer line inspection cameras should allow you to see into the pipe to be sure that it is no longer blocked, or that the new liner runs its complete length. Always be sure the written contract covers how your property is to be restored after the repair – for example, all holes refilled and leveled. Make sure that your property is in the state you expected it to left in.

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Written Warranties
Asking Your Contra Costa County Sewer Line Contractor for Warranties

The majority of plumbers and sewer line contractors provide warranties on the repairs they carry out. Read the warranty closely to see what it covers and what it does not. For example, if the ground freezes and the sewer line is damaged as a result, will that be covered or is that considered outside the contractor’s control?

Such conditions are often spelled out in the warranty – sometimes in blanket language. Be sure you understand what the blanket language is covering and what it is not.

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Top 10 Requests
Popular Sewer Line Service Requests in the Contra Costa Area

Sewer line contractors often receive requests when homeowners are at their most frantic. The best sewer line contractors in Contra Costa County, whether in Walnut Creek, Concord, Antioch, Richmond, Pittsburg, Brentwood, Martinez, or Pleasant Hill, respond promptly and with expertise. They even offer services designed to help prevent emergencies.

Sewage Smell Abatement
Unfortunately, one of the indicators of a broken sewer line can be a smell of sewage. Sewer line contractors and plumbers should come and assess the smell and the pipes before drawing up a contract to address the problem.

Waste in Bathtub
Sometimes, attempting to clear a toilet drain results in waste backing up into the bathtub. This is a sign that you need to have your sewer lines checked.

Hydro-Jetting
Hydro-jetting is a technique used to clear pipelines of grease or other debris that can build up over time. Some contractors recommend that hydro-jetting be an annual process so that the pipes remain clear, especially on rentals and commercial properties.

Toilet Flush Properly
When the toilet will not flush properly, it can be a sign of greater problems. Of course, sometimes a simple plunger can remove a temporary blockage. But if your toilet continues to backup frequently or you cannot plunge the matter away, you may need a sewer line repair or replacement.

Sewer Line Repair
Not every problem is going to require a replacement of the entire sewer line. Sometimes a pipe is cracked or broken in such a way that only a small portion of the pipe needs to be replaced. A sewer line repair is warranted in such cases.

Sewer Line Replacement
Sometimes the damage to the sewer line is so comprehensive that the whole line must be replaced. If you have old, clay-based piping, it will be replaced, not repaired, since the clay piping does not meet the current standards. When evaluating repair vs. replacement, keep in mind that having to place multiple patches on the pipe over time can add up.

Replace Septic System
If you have a septic tank, you are responsible for emptying it. Some prefer to not have that burden. In cases where the municipal system is available, you can have your septic tank replaced with a sewer line that connects you to the municipal sewer system and frees you from one burden.

Slow Draining Toilet or Tub
If the water drains slowly from your toilet or tub, there may be a blockage or damage to the sewer line. Of course, the first step is to try to remove any blockage. If that does not solve the problem, check for breaks and breaches in the sewer line.

Tree Roots
Trees seek out water and are attracted to your sewer pipe. On occasion, tree roots can penetrate the pipes. The root balls can create blockages that must be removed. The pipes must then be repaired or replaced.

Video Inspection
Cameras exist that allow your plumber or contractor to look down your sewer line for breaks obstructions. If other measures are failing, you might want to have someone examine your pipes with a camera so that you can identify the problem.

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Glossary Of Terms
Glossary of Terms Used By Local Sewer Line Contractors

You may not know that much about your sewer line – except that it works. But when it comes to speaking with your sewer line repair company, you’ll want to have a basic understanding of what needs to be fixed or replaced.

Use the glossary terms to help you better understand the proposed work on your sewer line repair or sewer line replacement.

ABS
A type of pipe. Black and rigid, this plastic should only be used for a drain line.

Also known as: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene…

You may not know that much about your sewer line – except that it works. But when it comes to speaking with your sewer line repair company, you’ll want to have a basic understanding of what needs to be fixed or replaced.

Use the glossary terms to help you better understand the proposed work on your sewer line repair or sewer line replacement.

ABS
A type of pipe. Black and rigid, this plastic should only be used for a drain line.

Also known as: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene

access panel
An opening near a plumbing or electrical fixture that allows the contractor service the fixture.

adaptor
A device that allows different kinds of pipes to be connected.

cleanout
A cleanout is a capped pipe that is designed to allow access to the sewer lines. Homes may have one or more cleanouts, and some homes have none.

Also known as: clean-out

easement
An easement allows someone who does not own the property in question to use that property in a limited way. For example, an easement may serve as a passage to a property.

coupling
A device that unites two pieces of pipe.

DWV
Drain, waste, and vent.

elbow
Refers to a piece of pipe that has two openings and changes the direction of the line.

Also known as: ell

fall
Refers to the pipe’s slope, which would be required for drainage to occur adequately.

Also known as: flow

fixture
Refers to appliances that supply and/or dispose of water.

Also known as: sink, toilet, tub

flux
In plumbing, refers to a paste that is applied when metal joints are soldered. The paste helps the joint resist rusting.

force main
A sewer line where sewage moves as a result of pressure, instead of gravity.

gravity sewer
A sewer where wastewater flows downstream – as a result of gravity.

I.D.
Refers the inside diameter of a pipe. The inside diameter is the measurement used to size pipes.

I/I
Infiltration and inflow occurs when groundwater gets into the sewer system.

Also known as: infiltration and inflow

pipe bursting
A technique used for sewer line replacement. A bursting head breaks up the old pipe and drags the new pipe into place behind the bursting head. It is an alternative to trenching.

pipe replacement
Usually refers to digging up an old pipe and replacing the entire length of the pipe.

point repair
A point repair addresses a specific point of failure in a pipe. The damaged piece of the pipe is replaced with a piece of pipe of the same diameter.

pump station
Pump stations accept sewage from a specified part of the sewer system, then pump the water on to the next section of sewer or to the next pump station.

PVC
A type of plastic, white or cream, that forms rigid pipes used where pressure is not applied, for example in waste or venting systems.

Also known as: polyvinyl chloride

riser
A riser is a  set of pipes and fittings that is vertically assembled and sends water upwards.

rough-in
In plumbing, the rough-in consists of putting the water supply lines and drain, as well as the waste and vent lines, in position so that they reach the fixture they are servicing.

service basin
The areas into which a city’s sewer system may be divided. Each service basin typically has its own pump station.

setback
A setback is an area behind, or set back from, the property line.

soil stack
The soil stack takes wastewater to the sewer line. The soil stack is the biggest vertical drain line that all branch waste lines connect to.

stop valve
A stop-valve is a device that works with a single fixture, allowing the water to that fixture to be turned on and off without affecting the water supply to any other fixture.

trap
In the drain line of a fixture, such as a toilet or tub, the trap is a curved section. It holds water to prevent sewer gases from going up the pipe and into the home.

union
A device with three pieces that joins two sections of pipe. The pipes can be disconnected without severing the pipe.

vent stack
The vent stack is the upper part of the soil stack and allows gases and odors to escape. It is located above the highest fixture in place.

WYE
A device, or fitting, that has three openings. It is used to make branch lines.

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Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ For Sewer Line Repair and Replacement Companies

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified Sewer Line Contractor?

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified Sewer Line Contractor?
A: Diamond Certified helps you choose a sewer line contractor with confidence by offering a list of top-rated local companies who have passed the country’s most in-depth rating process. Only sewer line contractors rated Highest in Quality earn the prestigious Diamond Certified award. Most companies can’t pass the ratings. American Ratings Corporation also monitors every Diamond Certified company with ongoing research and ratings. And your purchase is backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. So you’ll feel confident choosing a Diamond Certified sewer line contractor.

Q: Do I have to dig up my entire yard to fix my sewer line?
A: There are techniques available today that will help you get a sewer line replacement or sewer line repair without digging up your yard. You can get your pipes relined, which creates a new pipe within the existing pipe. The new pipe lining is pulled through the existing pipe, then heated so that it creates a solid, resistant pipe. Another option is to use pipe bursting in which a bursting head breaks up the existing pipe in the ground and pulls a new pipe along behind itself.

Q: How much of the sewer line am I responsible for?
A: The homeowner is generally responsible for the sewer line that runs from the house to the edge of the sidewalk closest to house. Once the line reaches city property, like the sidewalk, it becomes the city’s responsibility, in most cases. You should check with your locality about the specifics of where the municipal responsibility picks up. Anytime your sewer line repair or replacement looks like it is hitting the sidewalk, you should call the municipal government to be sure where your responsibility stops.

Q: What makes a sewer line need repair?
A: Sewer lines get blocked and broken because of many reasons. If you drop things down the drain, they can form the basis of a clog that will not allow water and waste to pass. In addition, pipes can crack, especially old fashioned clay pipes, so clay pipes are no longer allowed. Tree or brush roots may get into the pipe and form the basis of the blockage. Or settlement of the land over time, or swelling or contracting of the pipes due to freezing or thawing may weaken the pipes and cause them to sag or crack.

Q: Should I trust someone who says he or she has “a good idea” of where a problem is occurring?
A: Plumbers and sewer line contractors today have very sophisticated technology, including cameras that can be used to view the inside of the pipes. Your sewer line contractor should use the camera to determine exactly where the problem is before starting to dig or repair the issue.

Q: Do I need a licensed contractor?
A: Yes, in California, you should get a licensed sewer line contractor to perform work on your sewer line. When you look for your contractor, you will see firms advertising as either sewer line contractors or as plumbers. Just make sure the firm has experience in working with sewer lines, and that they are licensed by the state of California – the license number should appear in their advertising – and that they are bonded and have worker’s compensation insurance for their employees.

Q: Do I need a permit for my sewer line repair or sewer line replacement?
A: In most cases, yes, you will need a permit for your sewer line repair or replacement. Your contractor should be able to help you get this permit. Be sure to ask about whether or not the firm helps with obtaining the permit.

Q: When do I need to do more than clear a block?
A: You can start to resolve wastewater problems by trying to clear a drain. Often, homeowners or plumbers will begin by trying to snake a pipe, or use other methods to clear it. If you cannot clear the blockage and get the fixture running again, or if the blockage recurs frequently, it may be time to check the sewer line. If you have sewage showing up outside, a bad sewage smell, or other obvious signs, it may be time to replace the sewer line.

Q: What’s the different between a sewage line and a septic tank?
A: A sewage line connects the individual house to a municipal wastewater system. The wastewater is carried through pipes to facilities that can process the wastewater. With a septic tank, the waste is piped from the house into a tank on the property and stored. Once the tank is full, it must be pumped dry before more can be added. If the municipality’s sewage system reaches the house with a septic tank, the house can be converted from a septic tank to the sewage system. Some sewer line contractors and plumbers specialize in these conversions.

Q: What is the environmental impact of using pipe relining?
A: The material used to reline pipes is epoxy-based and safe for the environment.

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