How Much Does It Cost to Repair or Replace a Water Service Line in South Carolina?

by Matt Schmitz
cost guide, wsl

So closely is South Carolina associated with its generally hospitable year-round climate and beachy lifestyle, it’s even officially nicknamed for a palm tree. But it’s not all piña coladas and paddleboarding in the Palmetto State. For a quarter of the year from December through February, the state’s average low flirts with freezing temps — and all it takes is an uncharacteristically cold night to wreak havoc on your underground water service line, turning your yard into Hilton Head Island minus the world-class golf. The good news for homeowners is that water-line repair and replacement in South Carolina comes at a significant discount, on average, compared with what the average American pays.

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Your exterior water service line carries water from the public water main into your home. But make no mistake: Once the pipes run under your property, they’re your responsibility — so you’re likely on the hook for any repair or replacement costs.

How deep your pipes are buried deeply impacts the price you pay for these services. Water service lines are buried as deep as local building codes require — but usually, the depth is determined by the frost line in your area. And the deeper the technician must dig to get to your broken or otherwise compromised line, the higher the cost.

graphic visualization showing a cut-away of a home exposing its rooms and home systems specifically focused on the water service line

The nationwide average water service line depth is 4.58 feet, but in South Carolina, these lines are buried nearly 2 feet shallower, at 2.68 feet on average. For context, in f-f-f-freezing Minnesota, pipe depth is more than 8 feet.

Repair and replacement costs also vary depending on where you live. The national average for diagnosis is $222, for repair is $1,039 and for replacement is $3,581.

Below, you’ll find average service prices based on aggregated HomeServe data reported by our network of contractors across South Carolina, which should give you an approximation of how much you’ll pay to fix your out-of-commission water service line.

Water Service Line Diagnosis: $308

Before any work can begin, the technician will need to come out and run some tests to see what’s wrong with your system. In South Carolina, the fee for this is 39% higher than the national average.

Water Service Line Repair: $687

A whole host of things can cause trouble with your exterior water service line — from invading tree roots to clogs to general wear and tear. Whatever’s up with your system, the repair process will likely start with excavation to expose the pipe. Depending on your situation, the technician may need to clear a blockage, find a leak or fix the pipe — and, of course, fill the hole back in.

Water line repairs cost South Carolinians some 34% less than the Americans at large.

Water Service Line Replace: $2,596

Small sections of leaky or broken pipe can be repaired, but massive clogs or fully compromised pipes might necessitate a full replacement. Water service line replacements cost South Carolina homeowners some 28% less than the average American.

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Video produced and directed by Eric Rossi: