Had to get my home water line replaced. Unexpected.

Joined
Apr 9, 2008
Messages
15,981
Location
Central NY
Also - thanks to the water authority for NOT telling me about the leak for a few months so I went through a few YEARS of water. They called last week and said that I had been using an excesive amount of water. 105000 gallons for the month of September. The representative said it was probably a leaky toilet. However, I would imagine that 105000 gallons through my toilet would have overwhelmed my leech field.

I fixed the leaky toilet and we were still leaking 1.3 gallons per minute. So I started calling around. No one would be willing to take a look at it. I found one company that would run me a new line for $500/ft + 3750 connection fee. We're 140 feet off the road ... do that math! Another company was willing to look and do a quote until they heard it's a mobile home then they said they don't do mobile homes. Even though the problem is in the yard ...

Found out a family friend does this and has done it. When I was asking him what he was thinking to find the leak and fix, he said if he couldn't fix it I'd be looking at less than $5000 all in for a new line with a plumber coming out to hook it up. At that point, I said let's not bother finding the leak and just replace it with something NOT copper. We got the UFPO request in and by Monday we were marked and ready to go! So he started digging and got the new poly line to the house. From there, we had a plumber come out and get us hooked up inside. All in all, we were without water in the house for maybe 20 hours. Not bad at all considering the major failure.

When he started digging up the old line, he discovered that someone buried copper line right in rocky soil with no sand bed. That causes a few issues. Our soil is acidic. Also as the ground moves around, the rocks against the soil don't do us any favors. Also someone tied it into the original well. Then from there it went to a pressure tank next to the garage which was not buried far below the surface. Then under the garage slab, the slab between the house and garage and the house slab. There's a lot of line sitting under slabs! I'm pretty sure I caused this by parking the Jeep next to the garage for a few months right on top of the pressure tank sitting next to it.

It should have been obvious sooner. Back earlier in September, my pressure washer stopped working. Then we had about 6 days of rain and the yard never dried up (we're all sand here, so there's very rarely any standing water for more than a few hours). The other day I had the washing machine going and I took a shower and noticed no pressure at all in the shower.




My pristine , fully manicured lawn before digging started! I was joking about this - I literally do not care about the yard, or the trees. I'd pave the lot if I could.

20221011_142920.jpg



Excavation at the meter pit to find the old line

20221011_143318.jpg



Starting Digging

1665691425068.jpeg


Almost there
1665691468633.jpeg


To house:
1665691485877.jpeg


Ready to go to the slab! The water table isn't this high, this is water that was pushed in this
1665691501691.jpeg
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2015
Messages
4,577
Location
USA
Is that 200 psi pipe? The thinner walled black plastic stuff is prone to collapse when deeply buried.
 
Joined
Apr 28, 2020
Messages
806
Location
North Dakota
Interesting it's an external meter in your climate, is that because it's a mobile home or are all houses that way in NY despite the colder temps?
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2002
Messages
5,475
Location
Lakeville, MN
Welcome to finding out exactly how much water can leak so fast with a supply line issue... Bad news to those who suggest appealing paying for the water volume is if the break is on the private side of the valve/meter from the supply, you are responsible for the water "used". Had a large leak (outdoor sprinkler system) that popped up while I was on vacation. Ended up with a water bill that was 2.5 times my normal summer bill - and that was with a leak that lasted 5 days...
 

CKN

Joined
Oct 14, 2014
Messages
9,663
Location
Utah
I have insurance that covers repairs/issues like this. Not all insurance companies offer this type of coverage,
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2002
Messages
5,475
Location
Lakeville, MN
That would only work if he has sewer service since sewer rates are based on the amount of water consumed and assumed to proportionally go back down the drain.

If you have municipal water (or other common supplier), you get a bill for water delivered. Most places charge for sewer based on the amount of water delivered. (Your hint here is how many sewer lines have a meter on them).

In our area, your sewer bill is based on the lowest month/quarter consumption, typically winter. That removed irrigation water from being billed for sewer services, but you pay the water rate for the delivered water. (My example is I am billed for 14,000 gallons per quarter for sewer service (my winter water consumption), but my summer bill has the sewer at 14,000 gallons and water at 48,000 gallons (irrigating 0.5 acres in dry weather).

(Background - I designed the comprehensive sewer plans for multiple communities in my area - including determining required billing rates to operate and maintain the system components).
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
Messages
13,519
Location
Suburban Washington DC
Most places charge for sewer based on the amount of water delivered. (Your hint here is how many sewer lines have a meter on them).
I can't imagine any town would have a sewer system ONLY, and not have water lines as well, thus the notion of sewer meters are pretty far fetched. Installing a 2 inch water service line for a town costs a fraction of what sewers that are many feet in diameter cost to put in.

In our area, your sewer bill is based on the lowest month/quarter consumption, typically winter. That removed irrigation water from being billed for sewer services, but you pay the water rate for the delivered water.
At my house there is a submeter for the sprinkler system so water used for the landscape which doesn't go down a drain, isn't calculated for sewer rates.
 
Joined
May 7, 2004
Messages
13,185
Location
Nokesville, VA
I can't imagine any town would have a sewer system ONLY, and not have water lines as well

"Downtown" Nokesville does. Only sewer. Everything is on a well. (That's the area around Fitzwater Drive, Nokesville, VA east of 28, if you want to look at it on a map).

The county service authority bills for sewage by putting a water meter on the water line coming from the well.

I have no idea why they didn't put water lines in.

There are other places in the county where there are sewer lines but no water lines, and they handle billing the same way, meter on the well line.

My septic system has a water meter on it. I'm not sure why. It's an "advanced treatment" system with a couple of pumps, floats, two tanks, a couple of control panels. Whomever designed it specified a water meter, and it has one. The water meter is on the outlet of the system where it goes into a drip irrigation field.
 
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
1,404
I can't imagine any town would have a sewer system ONLY
We have separate utilities for water and for sewer. Sewer is run by the county and is a flat monthly rate for residential. No idea what they do for commercial.

Water is a separate public utility that covers the county by some special charter available under South Carolina law, so its completely separate from county government.. I guess that keeps the politics out of it maybe was its purpose?
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2002
Messages
5,475
Location
Lakeville, MN
In regards to asking for a refund, you stated:

That would only work if he has sewer service since sewer rates are based on the amount of water consumed and assumed to proportionally go back down the drain.

That seems to make the assumption that water is free and you only pay for sewer service.

That was where I pointed out that most places bill for sewer service based on the water delivered - but you also pay for the water delivered in addition to the sewer fees.

On top of that, while it is true that only a portion of the water used goes in the drain, you are billed based on your water use as a whole (and as I pointed out, based on non-irrigation use, or as you mentioned via submeter (very uncommon here). It all works out because everyone is billed the same way - so you pay your proportion of costs.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2002
Messages
5,475
Location
Lakeville, MN
We have separate utilities for water and for sewer. Sewer is run by the county and is a flat monthly rate for residential. No idea what they do for commercial.

Water is a separate public utility that covers the county by some special charter available under South Carolina law, so its completely separate from county government.. I guess that keeps the politics out of it maybe was its purpose?

A similar setup exists in some cities here - Water is delivered by a public utility and the sanitary is run by the City, with separate billing.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
8,798
Location
South Carolina
I was never billed for sewer based on water usage in NY or SC.
I think that is more of a county thing and what sewer district you are in.
We have city water company and county sewer.
 
Joined
Jul 26, 2004
Messages
13,727
Location
Middlesex County CT
Just throwing my info in here.

I have water supplied by CT Water Company; my sewer is town run; there is a flat charge for residential sewer service. I believe it is $400/year.

My water company provides (3) levels of insurance for

1) outside water feed from street to house $90/year
2) outside water and sewer $154/year
3) outside water and sewer and inside plumbing. $190/year

I have chosen plan (1) and the distance from the road to my house is about 25 feet ( i am the last house on a dead end, no turnaround street)
Distance of feed doesn't impact cost; it is simply a way of distributing risk with other homeowners; i'll take that.

Looking @ my water feed, i think it is probably leaded steel or galvanized; in 25 years living here, I've never called.


Good thing for the OP'r it was not February; maybe count your blessings.
 
Last edited:
Top