First, the standard disclaimer: no one pipe solution is better than another 100% of the time. Each installation should be considered individually, and the pros and cons of all methods of repair considered. In general terms, however, pipe lining has several advantages over pipe bursting that should be considered before installing either one.
Doesn’t disrupt the ground
Pipe bursting depends on dragging a bursting head through the old pipe and shattering it. This process is very stressful on the ground. It cannot be performed beneath houses, or anywhere a building’s foundation cannot be compromised.
Pipe lining, on the other hand, does not disrupt the ground in the same way. The old pipe is filled with a woven sleeve soaked in resin. That resin is cured into a hard plastic pipe inside of the old pipe. There’s no reason to disrupt the old pipe at all. This causes less stress to the surrounding area and is better for your landscaping and land overall.
Less disruptive to the neighborhood
Pipe lining is not a silent business, but it’s not as loud and stressful as pipe bursting. Pipe bursting involves a winch exerting up to thirty tons of pressure to break apart the pipe. On top of that, occasional tamping and other forms of pressure are used to fully break the pipe up beneath the ground. This is a loud process that will take several hours, most likely. The time that it takes, depends on the length of your pipe; it could be more, it could be less. This process will attract attention.
Pipe lining is a much quieter process. While all machinery makes some amount of noise, there isn’t the same need to pound the ground and shatter pipe that pipe bursting has. The machinery used for pipe lining is mostly refrigeration units and then air curers. They keep the hot air flowing into the sleeve so that it hardens into a structurally sound pipe.
Potentially better for the future
Pipe bursting replaces an old pipe with a new one through breaking the old one into little pieces. While this works well in the moment, it leaves the question of what will be done about those pieces in the future. Even though pipe bursting has a long life, one day the pipe will need to be replaced again. Broken pieces of the old pipe, scattered around, may make that more difficult. Additionally, the broken pieces of pipe may continue to break down in the soil. There’s nothing that would hold them together. They could further corrode and leach into the ground, depending on their materials.
Pipe lining holds the old pipe together much better. The resin-cured pipe forms entirely within the old pipe. The pipe is not dismantled, and the burden of carrying its load is removed. This slows the deterioration of the old pipe. Though CIPP pipes will one day need to be replaced, they’re more likely to have held together as two pipes.
Pipe bursting and pipe lining are two forms of trenchless pipe repair. Each situation is unique, and no method will be perfect for 100% of situations. Despite this, pipe relining offers significant advantages over pipe bursting.