Pneumatic Pipe Bursting

Published: September 29, 2019 | Last updated: July 5, 2023

What Does Pneumatic Pipe Bursting Mean?

Pneumatic pipe bursting is the process of replacing old and damaged sewer pipes by bursting the old pipe using a pneumatic tool.

The pneumatic bursting tool is similar to a large hammer that makes its way through the old pipe as a new pipe is pulled in behind it. Pipe bursting is a very convenient and quick way to repair damaged pipes without having to dig up the ground.

The old pipe can be replaced using better pipe materials, such as high-density polyethylene (HDPE), polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP).


Trenchlesspedia Explains Pneumatic Pipe Bursting

The pneumatic pipe bursting technique works with the help of the pneumatic action of the bursting tool on the pipe. The bursting tool is inserted into one end of the pipe using an insertion pit or a manhole.

A winch attached to the bursting tool is placed at the other end of the pipe through a manhole or exit pit. The winch pulls the pipe through the old pipe as the pneumatic action on the bursting tool breaks the old pipe. The new pipe is pulled in behind the tool and installed simultaneously.

The shattered pieces of the old pipe are pushed into the surrounding soil eliminating the need to retrieve the old pipe.

This method can be used to install pipes that are larger in diameter to the original pipe.


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