Instead of ‘sewer insurance,’ get a lawyer

Interesting that the city has begun pimping the sale of “sewer-line insurance” to homeowners. Why would innumerable sewer lines “as old as Woodrow Wilson” suddenly start failing? Instead of replacing or relining troublesome sewer mains, a few years ago, the city began using a Vactor Jet Rodder that forces water at high pressure – 2,000 to 3,000 pounds per square inch – into old mains ostensibly to “flush them out.” This overpressure feeds directly back to your home – and hopefully up a vent pipe to your roof.

A lot of otherwise serviceable clay or cast-iron service lines simply can’t handle this astounding level of pressure. A sewer is supposed to flow by gravity, and sewer pipes were never designed to handle thousands of pounds of pressure. Naturally, they rupture. But the city will tell you it’s due to age!

Failures because of jet-rodding tend to occur at or near the saddle, where your home sewer line connects to the main, as this is the point of greatest pressure. When several of my neighbors all suffered near-simultaneous sewer-line “failures,” all right at the saddle, it pointed clearly to something new the city was doing, and not just the age of our pipes. You can see the asphalt patches where one after the next, we all paid to repair our sewer lines, at considerable expense, assuming it was because of age.

Take note of when Durango’s Jet Rodder visits your neighborhood, and send the bill to the city when they overpressure and explode your clay or cast-iron sewer lines. Instead of buying “insurance,” I suggest Durango homeowners hire a lawyer and start a class-action lawsuit.

Wade Nelson


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