Orangeburg sounds like a fun word to me, so much in fact that I felt motivated to do some research on this mysterious piping that I hear so much about. I hear plumbers talk about “Orangeburg” and their voice changes to over-exaggerate the word; making it sound looming and ominous. I felt left out, I had to self educate! After researching online, I quickly found out that it is indeed, ominous. If you watch the You Tube Video below titled “Orangeburg Nightmare” you will also learn that this “Coal Tar Impregnated Wood Fibre Pipe” is nothing but a ticking time-bomb, literally.
“Based on what has been learned about this pipe material over the past 50-60 years, if you believe that you may have this type of pipe in your sewage conveyance systems (private or public), find out where it is and what condition it is in, since it has demonstrated itself to often have a limited structural life expectancy. It reportedly deforms and loses its circular cross-section, allowing infiltration and root intrusion. Tree roots have often been reported to wrap themselves around the outside perimeter of the pipe barrels of sewers made of coal tar impregnated wood fibre pipe and, as a result, precipitate the deformation and/or crushing of the pipe.”-http://www.sewerhistory.org/articles/compon/orangeburg/orangeburg.htm
Yikes, should have done Trenchless Sewer replacement, rather than dig a thrench in their back yard. Check out my last blog: Trenchless Sewer Replacement: Pipe Bursting Method to learn about the benefits of doing a Trenchless Pipe replacement.