Irrigation drain-safe to use cutter blade/snake in?

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Wandering_Burr

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I have three inch PVC drain lines from the back of the house to the street. In heavy rain they carry the water to the curb. They are (I guess) a standard, triple wall PVC-and it is pretty thin stuff since it isn't pressurized.

The house is 20 years old and the lines are choked with roots. On one side of the house it is pretty full of spider roots with about six 1/4 inch or so larger roots running through as well. The other side is under hardscape so I'm not sure what is in there-but there is a nearby fig tree so it could be awful.

I realize the correct repair is full replacement but I'm looking to kick that can down the road to avoid costly hardscape work. I'm hoping you will tell me it is safe to rent a powerful snake and put a 2 or 3 inch cutter blade on it to clear the lines out-then some rootx once or twice a year to keep things at bay.

First rental company I called said their gear would chew through any PVC piping rather than the roots. The second company said theirs would work fine for small, spider like roots and I was welcome to put my own cutter blade on to chew through anything larger.

I want to clear them mechanically if possible, but don't want to smash them up so the roots intrude everywhere. Anyone here with experience they can share?

Thanks.
 

Reach4

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standard, triple wall PVC
What is that?

Are the joints bells?

What color is it?

Are the sections glued? Glued sections should not have roots coming in in the middle, so that leaves the ends, unless there are holes as in the picture below.
burr-pipe-3.jpg
 
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Wandering_Burr

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Color is white. I've only uncovered one 'joint' so far. I'll put the photo in below but basically they just compressed one pipe end and jammed it into the other. I dug out about 1/4 of the pipe run down the front yard and found multiple cracks but no roots entering. There were large rocks on top of the line which may have cracked the pipes in the past-or my digging them out may have pushed them down to cause the cracks.

This was all hired done by the original home owner and it is clear they used the low bidder.

burr-pipe-2.jpg
 
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Reach4

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I wonder if the concrete truck drove over the pipe.

Where are the roots that you see? I would think that near a tree would be the hot spot.

That photo maybe shows a bell. If you put your own pipe in, I think you will use purple primer so that you can see where it is glued.
 

Wandering_Burr

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burr-pipe-1.jpg


I dug up about eight feet of pipe near the two happiest bushes/trees along the line hoping I'd get the intrusion but no luck. I think it may be a few more feet down at the next junction. But I have the same trouble on the other side of the house-so I came here to see if folks think I can get away with using a power drain snake with a cutting blade attached to safely clear out the roots. It doesn't have to be perfect, but I do need to get the flow rate up. If I can't use the blade then I'll keep up the manual labor of digging this line up until I find the problem spot.
 
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MACPLUMB

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Even with all my years experience could not snake that pipe too full of roots dig and replace with standard sch 40 sewer pipe to keep roots out
 

Wandering_Burr

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Got it. Thank you for your experience-I will dig up this line and pour rootX and keep fingers crossed on the other line under the hardscape. (i have a backup sump if it gets overwhelmed)
 
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