Pipe Reaming, Restrained-Joint PVC Pipe Helps Colorado Municipality Complete Challenging Sewer Line Replacement

By John Coogan, North American Specialty Products | July 2013, Vol. 68, No. 7

At the end of each ream, the crew attached the joints of 12-inch CertaFlo pipe -- supplied by Ferguson Inc., in Fort Collins -- onto the drill head and the pipe string was pulled into place. The crew easily assembled the pipe, adding joint after joint as the pullback process continued. The crew used 10-foot joints in the more constricted sections and 20-foot joints elsewhere.

“We liked the integral bell on the CertaFlo pipe, which saved us a spline in each assembly, as well as having the option of both 10-foot and 20-foot joints,” Temple says. “It was easy to assemble and held together really well during the pulls.”

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Tight tolerances

The restrained-joint PVC pipe was installed to meet a grade of .39 percent, and the reaming corrected any pre-existing grade problems. Due to excellent preparation and coordination, the pipe reamings and pullbacks went smoothly and were usually done within four hours each day. After camera inspections of the new sewer line sections were completed, Connell Resources’ crew then reconnected services and filled in excavations. All of this would be finished by the end of the work day. Together, the 1,600-feet of pipe reaming and 2,400 feet of open-trench pipe were finished in December.

The project produced only minimal disruption and caused no harm to the commercial buildings or homes above it. The city has received very positive feedback from the homeowners and business owners throughout the district.

“At the inception of this project, we started talking to people in the neighborhood about it and made sure to keep them extremely well-informed at each step,” Saye says. “They were, in general, very appreciative with what we were doing, since they were getting better sewer service than they’d had for several years. The project didn’t interfere with them at all, and they barely saw anything.”

As for the pipe reaming choice, Saye says it provided an excellent solution to a challenging pipe replacement, but one that could be cost-prohibitive in less-challenging projects.