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Types of Sewer Pipe Used in Tacoma

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Types of Sewer Pipe Used in Tacoma

If you live in the greater Tacoma area, there are several types of material that your pipes might be made of. Due to Tacoma’s historic nature, some of these materials may be considered outdated. Older sewer lines are always prone to more issues than newer ones, however there are some types of pipe that will maintain their good condition for many years.


Here are a few of the different materials your pipes may be made of:

Concrete Pipes– When it comes to pipes for sewage, they are still predominantly made of concrete. For larger diameter pipes, reinforced concrete may be used. Usually this type of pipe will have a receiving bell or a stepped fitting.

Orangeburg Pipes– Orangeburg is a fiber pipe that is made from layers of wood pulp and pitch that have been pressed together. It was used in the installation of sewer lines from the 1860s through the 1970s. Orangeburg is a lightweight, but extremely brittle material and is far more likely to have problems with collapsing or root intrusion than any other type of pipe.

Cast Iron Pipes– The use of Cast Iron pipe is extremely historic, and is still employed today. Cast iron Sewer Pipes are laid out in cast pipe sections which are jointed together by a bell and spigot joint.

PVC Pipes– PVC stands for “Polyvinyl Chloride,” and is the world’s third most widely produced plastic polymer. This material accounts for 75% of all sanitary sewer pipe applications in the US. These types of pipes are the most attractive because they are cheap, relatively easy to install, and can be fused together to create permanent joints that are virtually impervious to leakage.

HDPE Pipes– HDPE stands for “High Density Polyethylene.” When used to make pipes, this material is easily fused, and resistant to corrosion. These pipes are used in trenchless methods of sewer repair and replacement. This means that the pipes can be run under the ground without having to dig up or disturb the surface.

Clay Pipes– Clay is the most ancient material used for piping. By the 18 and 1900’s clay was the material of choice for a large amount of sewers. Some homes still have their original clay piping. While clay is not considered the most choice material today, if a home’s original clay pipe shows no signs of cracks or breaking there is no need to replace it.


If you are curious about what your pipes are made of, or have concerns about their integrity feel free to give us a call here at 253-345-7222 or click the “request appointment” button and we will have one of our skilled technicians out to you in no time.