When someone says ceramics, you probably think of dishes, cooled clay pottery, or perhaps even fragile figurines. In any case, you likely don’t think of sewer drain pipes immediately. There’s a good reason for that – the fact ceramics is not the best material to use in your sewer system, and surely not the first choice to use in your home. Ceramic pipes were used between about 1920 and 1980 – it’s not used in more modern homes anymore, considering ceramic pips is quite labor intensive to install and somewhat expensive to produce – not to mention that these pipes are quite prone to cracks and leaks.
If your sewer system has ceramic pipes today, it’s quite likely that your home and plumbing system are quite outdated and need work. If your pipe happens to spring a leak – which is almost guaranteed to happen eventually when you’re dealing with ceramics – here are some steps you may want to take in order to temporarily fix your pipe.
If the pipe cracks or springs a leak, and you’re not interested in retrofitting or replacing it yet, here’s what you can do to get it in good shape again.
First, you’ll need access to the pipe. You’ll probably going to need to take off the codes valve cover. Since it’s likely that you live in an older home and the cover isn’t removed often, it may take a wrench and a lot of force. Now that you’re able to access the buried pipe, jet them out in order to clear sediment – you may want to go to a hardware store and rent a sewer jetter in order to do that.
The next step is to get a sewer camera, which you may rent as well, and insert the camera snake through the pipe. Feed it until you manage to find the leak – after finding it, estimate its size. Make sure to round up by a few inches, in order to make sure you’re not going to cover the leak with something smaller than it, since that won’t help.
Last but not least, purchase the sort of inflatable pipe tubing that’s used to patch pipe leaks. Get a piece of tubing the right size to cover your leak, then push it inside. Push it until you find that it’s directly below or under the leak, then pull the cord, making it inflate. If you do it right, the tubing will inflate and provide plenty of cover for the leak, stopping when it reaches the pipe.
This is a quite complicated fix, and a temporary one. If you want a long term solution, it is wise to call a plumber who’ll be able to properly repair it. If you aren’t too confident in your plumbing skills, it’s best to immediately call a plumber when you suspect you have a leak – they’ll be able to repair it right from the get go – this will save you the time and stress involved with dealing with this issue, and eliminate the risk of you ending up damaging the pipe further by accident.