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Thread: Burying a water line

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member dripdrip's Avatar
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    Default Burying a water line

    Hi. I'm burying a water line between buildings. I'm hoping to use polyethylene, and was told to surround it with sand by a plumber. (Yes, I'm going below the frost line.)

    Can I sleeve it in schedule 40 PVC *instead* of using the sand?

    Thanks,

    DD
    Last edited by dripdrip; 11-08-2013 at 05:04 PM.

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member craigpump's Avatar
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    Yep, we do it all the time using 4" sch 40 for the sleeve

  3. #3
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    The one I did a couple of days ago was surrounded by "dirt".
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  4. #4
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dripdrip View Post
    ...was told to surround it with sand by a plumber.
    Why would you avoid using sand around the pipe? You don't need to use a plumber to shovel sand. Any DIY'er can do it. You don't need a truckload of sand. You can pick up a few bags of sand at most any big box store.

  5. #5
    Master Plumber Caduceus's Avatar
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    It's always advisable to 'snake' HDPE or PEX water services in the ditch, y'know kinda side to side like a snake (not snake like a sewer snake). This allows for expansion and contraction of the pipe. In my area we don't sleeve with pvc except for the last 10 feet or less before entering the home and any sleeving in the ditch is done with the next larger size of HDPE so that there is some giving when expansion/contraction occurs.

  6. #6
    DIY Senior Member dj2's Avatar
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    Another vote for sand.

  7. #7
    Master Plumber Caduceus's Avatar
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    Yeah, I left that out of my last post. I would just do sand, too. Best protective fill for plastic pipe. You could even run a locator (copper) wire in the ditch in case you need to find it in the future.

  8. #8
    DIY Junior Member dripdrip's Avatar
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    Well it's about a 100 foot run, and the backhoe bucket is 16" wide. So roughly how much sand would I need? Does it just need a little all the way around the pipe?

    Thanks!

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member dj2's Avatar
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    Good thing that you asked!

    The pipe should have 2-3 in under it and 2-3 in around it. The rest can be dirt.

  10. #10
    Jack of all trades DonL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dripdrip View Post
    Well it's about a 100 foot run, and the backhoe bucket is 16" wide. So roughly how much sand would I need? Does it just need a little all the way around the pipe?

    Thanks!

    Don't go 16 inches wide, save sand.

    Using bag sand is a bit if a joke.

    Get a load delivered.


    Good Luck on your project.
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  11. #11
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    About 2 cubic yards or a bunch of bags, neither of which are "cheap".
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  12. #12
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonL View Post
    Using bag sand is a bit if a joke.
    Well... that was before I knew it was a 100 foot long trench a foot and a half wide. I don't know how deep the frostline is in NE, but I assumed a trencher cutting a 3 inch wide trench.

    That's not to say you cannot make a narrow trench in the bottom of that mammoth one. One has to wonder what the existing material is and just how hostile it might be to the pipe.

  13. #13
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    I either use the "hostile" dirt, or let the customer furnish, and place, the sand, then backfill the trench.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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