Joint Sealing of a 24" Pipe Against I&I
Like many cities and counties across the United States, the City of Rancho Cucamonga manages an amalgam of sewer infrastructure assets of varying age, material types, and conditions, and as such, are challenged in stretching their maintenance budgets. So, when the City needed to address an emergency repair at a major intersection on Route 66, they decided to try a relatively new polyurethane injection application to stabilize their stormwater system.
The City of Rancho Cucamonga was inspecting damage that was discovered on another construction project and found seepage issues were occurring in the lateral lines below a major intersection of Route 66. They identified joint separation that was leading to Inflow and Infiltration (I&I) into the pipe.
The City had to balance a variety of issues in order to repair the pipes. First of all this was one of the busiest intersections of the entire city, so having long shutdown periods was not an option. Secondly, as always, balancing their budget while still having an effective repair was something the city was trying to manage. Thirdly, they needed the repair to happen as soon as possible so they could avoid any potential soil subsidence issues that could occur to the roadway intersection.
EagleLIFT uses a polyurethane injection process for sealing and stabilizing lateral joints. The process works by injecting a proprietary high-density, water-resistant polyurethane formulation called EL003. Once injected, the EL003 expands and travels throughout voids until the polyurethane has filled the joints around the entire perimeter of the pipe. This process seals any separation in the joints and cracks and helps re-establish contact between the pipe and the surrounding soils.
The City’s project had some complexities that had to be overcome. Firstly, the access point for the pipe was via a single manhole, whereby confined space entry certification was required by all crew personnel. Secondly, traffic control was required and EagleLIFT worked with the City on road closures while additionally monitoring the street surface to ensure the roadway wasn’t lifted. Thirdly, the pipe was 24 inches in diameter with joints at every 2 feet that required injection from within the pipe!
EagleLIFT accomplished this last feat by crawling into the pipe and predrilling the injection holes prior to injection. A crew member was fortunately sized for this task and additionally able to perform the injections afterward. The injections took place every 2 feet with monitoring down the line to watch for travel. As the polyurethane began to show at the next joint, the crew member would begin injection at the next location.
The project took place over 2 days with 8 hours each day and a total of 60 linear feet of pipe sealed and stabilized. Only 1 lane on Route 66 was closed, with minimal impact to traffic flows at the major intersection. This was Rancho Cucamonga’s first time using polyurethane injection for I&I mitigation and they were very happy with the results of the work and the professionalism of the EagleLIFT team.