Now, fortunately, there can be a different end to this story. Advances in building materials and techniques have given plumbers a new way to repair broken drain lines. Pipe bursting and relining are less damaging systems to repair broken lines.
Pipe bursting works by using the old pipe as a guide. A hydraulic machine pulls full-sized seamless replacement pipe through the old pipe. In the process it also breaks up (burst) the old pipe.
Pipe relining works by creating a pipe inside the pipe. An epoxy is used to coat and seal over root damage, cracks, breaks and holes.
If you are experience problems with broken sewer lines, talk to your plumbing contractor about these options as well as traditional approaches to repairing the line.