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Sewer Maintenance: Who Should Do It and Why


Drains and pipes are designed to last for years, but many of the pipes that run underneath of buildings, drive ways and streets are a hundred years old, and that age is starting to show. When the sewer is not properly maintained, it can result in a sink hole forming, the drainage pipe failing, resulting in the pipe collapsing and creating a smaller sink hole, and in a disruption in sewer services.

How big that sink hole is depends on how big the pipe is that fails. A smaller drainage pipe, such as the ones that may be found at the end of the driveway, will more than likely create a small sinkhole that does not pose a significant threat. Larger pipes that run underneath the street can cause an entire intersection to collapse, or the building above them.


Most people do not pay attention to the pipes that run underneath of buildings or drain pipes because they assume that it is the city’s or county’s responsibility, but this is not entirely true. A county or city is responsible for maintaining things that are on their property, but property owners are responsible for maintaining things on their own private property.

For example, a person with a drainage pipe that runs underneath of their driveway will be responsible for that maintenance.


Individuals that own their own property are encouraged to take the proper care to keep up the pipes or drainage pipes to prevent future incidents. One of the first steps is to hire a company to perform an inspection. This inspection can tell property owners if there are any problems, or if there may be a future problem so that it can be prevented.

For example, if an inspection reveals the beginning of a small crack, the property owner can invest in sewer lining equipment to prevent that crack from growing larger. Lining equipment can easily increase the lifespan of some pipes by seventy-five years or more, and it can prevent a sinkhole from forming in place of a driveway.


After an inspection is conducted, property owners are encouraged to perform maintenance as soon as possible to prevent problems. That small crack may not grow larger for months. On the other hand, it could also grow larger at an astounding rate and cause the pipe to fail within weeks. There is no way to tell, so it is always advised that homeowners handle problems as soon as they can.

Property owners need to take the time to educate themselves about a few factors that can affect the pipes underneath of their property. First, they need to learn who is responsible for what. After that, property owners need to research which programs are available in their area. Some counties have programs that will give homeowners rock or sewer lining at no cost, and others will give those that are determined to be financially eligible lining equipment at no cost. This varies by area.

Last, homeowners are encouraged to educate themselves on sewer lining equipment. Lining equipment is one of the most popular ways that cities are helping prevent sinkholes and making sure that their pipes last longer, and they may be on to something. As more cities are doing preventative maintenance using this equipment, there are less pipes failing.

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