Whether you notice your water bills rising or start to smell musty odors coming up through the floor, one of the worst parts about a slab leak is the dread of having to get it repaired. Slab leaks can happen in any home in both the freshwater and sewer plumbing and they can be frightening to deal with for any homeowner. Over the years there have been numerous attempts and technologies applied to making slab leaks more easily fixable but despite the best efforts of plumbers, it can still be an invasive process. Figuring out a way to open up the structural slab of a home to fix delicate plumbing parts has been an age-old question of plumbing repair. At Drain Nerds, here in Southwest Florida, we use a special method that isn’t invasive at all and is usually more effective than traditional methods.
One way to stop damage to your underground pipes is with routine maintenance! Be sure to ask how a drain cleaning service can keep your pipes protected.
What Is Foundation Tunneling?
Foundation tunneling is the best choice for repairing plumbing leaks under slabs. In the foundation tunneling process, licensed technicians will dig a small access hole near the side of the house where the sewer line exits the slab. Once the sewer line is located, the technicians will dig horizontally along the water line to uncover as much of it as they need to. The result is many feet of tunnels that allow plumbers to find and replace all of the affected sewer lines.
Once the pipe is exposed, plumbers will decide whether to repair it or replace it altogether. If the existing pipe isn’t made with up-to-date materials, they will replace it. After that, the tunnels are backfilled with the dirt that was removed to protect the structural integrity of the house.
Why Opt for Tunneling Under Slab for Plumbing?
To understand what makes tunneling under a home’s foundation superior to other methods of uncovering plumbing, it helps to know what other options are available. Of the options available for slab leak repair, there are 3 that are generally used today.
- Jackhammering through the slab: The common method of dealing with slab leaks is to use jackhammers to remove the slab inside the home and work on the plumbing below. This method is very invasive and may even require vacating the house during the job. Structural issues can appear later due to foundation damage.
- Trenchless sewer repair: Trenchless methods were invented to make slab leaks easier to repair without all of the mess. However, trenchless methods are still very invasive and very expensive. Large holes must be excavated to accommodate the machinery. While trenchless methods are quicker sometimes they may not even be an option due to water line damage.
- Foundation tunneling: Foundation tunneling is the superior method for slab leak repair. It is not invasive inside the home in any way. It allows plumbers to completely access plumbing for replacement and it doesn’t cause potential problems down the road. It can take a little longer than the other methods but it allows complete access to any affected plumbing so repairs can be completely made.
Essentially, all these methods are focused on fixing slab leaks and broken pipes beneath your home. Because they can be difficult to access, finding the ideal method can limit any damage to your SW Florida home and get you a much faster solution.
What is the Difference Between Cutting & Tunneling?
There are two main methods to repair a foundation leak: cutting and tunneling. What’s the difference and which method is preferable?
- Cutting: This method of slab leak repair involves cutting through the foundation to access the slab leak. This method involves the need to repair flooring once complete. If you have expensive flooring in the area where cutting will occur, this method will often be more expensive than tunneling since the flooring will have to be replaced. When cutting is the foundation leak repair method of choice, people living in the home may have to temporarily leave the house while repairs take place.
- Tunneling: Tunneling works by using a machine to bore a tunnel through the problem area, rather than cutting into the slab directly. This technique is often the preferable foundation leak repair method as is often cheaper than cutting and less messy.
If you suspect you have a foundation leak, give us a call! We can perform fast, accurate leak detection and recommend the most cost-effective solution for your home.
In addition to below foundation repairs, we also offer sewer line services that can help keep wastewater flowing in the right direction.
Working With Us
At Drain Nerds in Southwest Florida, we always strive to provide the best customer service on the market. We have a variety of options to make sure you get treated right no matter what job we are doing for you. Some of the things that set us apart are:
- Unbeatable guarantees
- Upfront pricing
- 5-star service
- We promise to keep your home clean
We take the time to make sure you know that you are getting the best deal for your money. By working with us you can be certain that your repairs were made effectively and will last. Broken pipes are never fun, but with the right methods, fixing them can be easy and stress-free.