All About Trenchless Pipe Repair and Replacement

*** The following article was originally printed by us in the May 2013 edition of a local central Pennsylvanian publication.

Pronto Plumbing Tackles

Orangeburg Pipe


It’s lurking just beneath the surface of your central Pennsylvania property, ready to strike at any moment. Ignore it at your peril, because it’s just a matter of time before Orangeburg Pipe puts a damper on your day.

orangeburgpipesOnce upon a time, Orangeburg Pipe was advertised as the wave of the future in pipe options. Manufactured of wood fibre layers held together with pitch or tar, this pipe (sometimes also called by the name “Bermico” proved economical and was thus used frequently by constructors of residences and buildings.

Today, we know that this type of pipe – basically made of “tar paper”, for lack of a better term – regularly causes area residents nightmares in the form of drain and sewage line failures.

Over time, Orangeburg pipe corrodes and deforms. The thin layers of wood fibre decay, deteriorating and warping until a) the pipe collapses (thereby blocking the water or sewage path); b) the pipe weakens and tree roots infiltrate the pipe interior; and/or c) the pipe bursts. Regardless, the outcome results in a mess that leaves owners frustrated.

Recently, the Pronto Plumbing team tackled an Orangeburg Pipe issue at a Camp Hill home on 39th Street. The homeowner’s pipe had become egg-shaped, and was failing fast. Without missing a beat, Pronto used cutting-edge instruments including a drain camera to determine exactly where the problem lay. Then, using a trenchless system, they laid new pipe without digging up the yard.

The replacement pipe Pronto chose is made from high-strength PVC, guaranteed to outperform any Orangeburg pipe (which usually fails between 30-50 years).

If you suspect that the pipes under your home that was built between the late 1940s and 1972 may be Orangeburg, please contact the Pronto Plumbing team at (717) 533-1057 to set up an inspection of your drain lines. It’s well worth knowing so you can save money and headaches in the long run.

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