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Question DetailsAsked on 10/14/2016

Is $10,000 a reasonable price for main line from house to street to be replaced. My house is 46 years old.

It's about 75 feet to the street from the house.

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1 Answer


For 75 foot run, that is about $133/LF - would certainly be on the higher end - water main replacement (assuming you meant water) can run from about $10-20/LF with very shallow burial (no ground frost in winter) and easy digging and not plantings or drive or walk or such in the way, on up to $50/LF range commonly for "normal" work in normal 3-5 foot burial range, more like $50-100 in harder digging soil or deeper burial, and all the way up to $200/LF or so for very rocky soil or bedrock excavation, having to work around or tunnel under obstacles or prized trees or such or having to go 10-15 feet deep in deep frost penetration areas. Of course, buried or overhead (for excavator operation) utility interferences matter a lot too.

If you meant sewer line, commonly in similar ranges but usually $10-20/LF more for a given set of conditions because of the slightly costlier pipe plus the need to maintain proper grade control.

For replacing a line in the existing trench (so easier digging than native soil) commonly $50/LF is used as a typical guesstimate - so your number, unless it involves tunnelling under drive or sidewalk or plantings or shed or such, would lead me to get a couple more bids. Many plumbers do not commonly do this type of work or do not like it so price it up - commonly in that case you can get an Excavation contractor separately and have him coordinate with the plumber on scheduling to dig it up and backfill the new line.

Of course, assuming the line is still usable but just leaking or producing dirty water, sometimes in order to minimize outage time (especially with multi-family buildings), a new alignment is dug from building to the curb pit valve or other connection point, and the newpipe placed without disturbing the old line, so there is an outage only during the hour or two while the actual connections at each end are made.

Another significant cost factor - if it requires excavation into the street that can rapidly increase costs for permits, traffic control, perhaps the utility having to do that part of the work, etc. That alone can add from $1000 to many thousands depending on utility and street department mandates and the amount of traffic the street carries.

Here are some links to previous similar questions with answers on both water and sewer line replacement and typical ballpark prices, and some issues related to that work.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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