Let’s be realistic: there’s nothing exciting about drain pipe lining unless you’re a plumber with a burning passion for your work, in which case, you already know what to expect to pay for this type of project. For everyone else who is a little less enthusiastic about it, not only can plumbing stuff get painfully boring, it can also really hurt your wallet if you don’t do your research ahead of time.

You’ve reached the point in your construction or pipe issues that you’re now facing the daunting task of deciding whether you should do relining or excavation. Taking a look at the lining, there are a few things that you need to take into consideration:

#1: Factors Influencing the Cost of Lining Drain Pipes

There are several factors that can affect the cost of this work and what you can expect to pay. When it comes to the pipe diameter, anything with 3” pipe will use a lot less material and resin, therefore, the liner can be put in using more affordable methods than the larger ones.

Something else to take a look at is the condition of the pipes. See if you can answer questions such as:

  • How old are your pipes?
  • Will they require a lot of cleaning?
  • What about the access to the drains? Do you have to dig a big hole just to get to them or is it rooftop access?
  • What about traffic if you’re going to be going out onto the street or curb?
  • Finally, what about the size of the project? The shorter, the more expensive it’ll be. For example, if you need 50’ of 3” pipe beneath a house could cost up to $140 per foot. Compare that to 3000’ of pipe in a high rise condominium, it could be $125 per foot.

What About Minimum Rates?

When it comes to drain pipelining, the required technology is patented and incredibly expensive (it can be $150,000 just for the basic package!). Then on top of that, you’ve got pipe inspection cameras (approx: $30,000), pipe cleaning jetters ($60,000), and other assets. When you look at it, the minimum costs that can apply to relining your drain pipes can be incredibly high, like $5-10,000 just for 20’ of pipelining!

To compare pipe lining costs with excavation, take a look at this chart:

50’ Pipe Lining 50’ Excavation
Installed Price (Ave.) $8,000 Jackhammer: $2,500
Time: 1.5 Days Dig up sand: $2,000
Replace pipe: $1,500
Replace Sand: $500
Re-pour Concrete: $2,200
New Tile/Carpet: $4,500
2 Weeks Hotel $1,400
Clean house: $500
Total Cost: $16,100
Time: 2 Weeks

At first, glance, drain pipelining can look overwhelmingly expensive–until you look at excavation costs. No matter what you do, it isn’t going to be cheap. If you want it done properly, with the right materials and done by the right people, it’s going to cost you a sizable chunk of change. The thing is though, it constitutes literally half the average cost of excavating in Toronto and takes so much less time. So sit down, take a breath, and try not to be too overwhelmed: you’ve got this!