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Different relining methods impact on the quality and cost of relining projects

Relining (whether pipes, drains or sewers) has been available in Australia for decades, yet it is still a niche sector of the industry and as a consequence, something many people understand very little about. Yet as the least disruptive and most cost-effective means to repair underground damaged or broken pipes, its popularity is rising and many people, particularly those considering using relining services, would like to know a little more about this unknown quantity. One aspect of relining that is often misunderstood is the different methods that we use and why. This article explains what you need to know about each of the main methods, when they are used and why so that when you’re looking at your relining quote (or invoice), you can make sense of it.

The first thing to make clear is that each of the methods discussed achieves the same end result and if installed correctly, complies with the Australian WaterMark Standards (which is a legal requirement). That end result being, replacing the damaged or broken pipe from the inside out, creating a newer, stronger and more robust structure. You can read more about the pros and cons and causes  in our other blogs. But regardless of the method, you can be confident that it will fix the problem. 

The thing you need to be aware of then, is when your installer ‘sells’ one method over the other whether through personal preference or limitations in equipment. They should be as efficient in regard to both the time taken and the total cost to complete the relining project.

The Pull-in-Place Method

The pull in place method can be thought of as the most traditional of the relining methods and as such, requires much less equipment to execute than more modern relining methods.

As per the name, it is executed by saturating a tube with EPOXY Resin and pulling it in place, relining the section of the damaged pipe. The nature of the process allows for excellent control and precision in more complex pipelines that may include multiple traps, bends or junctions.

Typically pull-in-place relining requires two access points to the damaged pipeline, enabling the tube to be inserted from one and pulled-in-place from the other. This may be a consideration depending on access and the total length of the pipe to be reined. 

Due to its more analogue nature, this method can take a little longer to execute, however it is very much the preferred method for intricate relining projects and often used in tandem with other methods.

The Inversion Method

The Inversion Method requires a more substantial investment in specialised equipment than pull-in-place. However, this does not necessarily mean it is more expensive, but that it is utilised in different ways to solve different problems.

As opposed to pulling the new pipe in place, inversion relining utilises an inversion drum to feed the resin-saturated tube into the damaged pipe whilst turning it inside out, therefore inverting it within the structure of the old pipe and restoring its integrity. With enough air capacity, virtually any length of pipe can be relined.

Inversion relining can be conducted from a single opening, simply shooting the new pipe to a stopping point either side of the damaged pipe. It is also a quicker method of relining, meaning that for long stretches of regular pipe-line, inversion is typically economical and preferred to pull-in-place. 

However, when relining more complex pipelines, it can cause issues and require extra work meaning more time and potential costs.

When to use which.

Like most things in life, the answer lies somewhere in the middle, but more horses for courses than each to their own. If your relining provider utilises both methods, you’re off to a good start. Having not only the capabilities but the inclination to use multiple relining methods when necessary will not only achieve a much better result but is likely to save you as the customer both time and money.

In terms of when to use which, at a high-level pull-in-place is most effective for more intricate jobs and inversion for longer, more straight forward pipelines. However, this may not always be the case and can depend on many factors. But akin to our article comparing quotes, any good tradesmen should be more than happy to explain why they are using a certain material or in this case, technique.

This relining project recently completed used multiple techniques within a single project. 

So now, armed with the basics of the two main relining techniques, you can now confidently ask why when you receive your quote and give yourself some peace of mind at the very least. After reading this, we hope it is obvious that Sydney Relining uses both methods to help provide the most efficient and most cost-saving solution!

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