Sewer repairs are a necessary part of property maintenance. If a property is old, or in the process of changing owners, it is a good idea to have the drains inspected so there are no unpleasant surprise in store for the residents.
Drain inspection is not the disruptive, time-consuming exercise it used to be. Gone are the days a team of plumbers would descend upon a property, locate the sewer system and proceed to dig up large areas to know why a pipe was leaking and what the possible solution could be.
Commercial and residential drain inspection with the help of video cameras is now an easy, time efficient and comparatively cheap method of checking the conditions of the sewer without major disruption in the routine of people living and working onsite.
Sewer camera inspection needs only a high-resolution video camera, a long flexible pipe or a “tractor”, a monitor and a couple of trained technicians who can read the images recorded by the camera, and dig a small “entry point” to the sewer system to insert the camera.
The flexible tube mounted with a camera is ideal for inspecting shorter pipes, while longer pipes are inspected with the help of a remote-controlled “tractor” mounted with a camera.
To start the inspection, the technicians will dig a small, vertical hole at the entry point of the sewer system to access the pipes. They will then thread the camera through the plumbing, and observe the images transmitted wirelessly by the camera to a monitor above ground.
The camera inside the pipe shows the conditions inside the pipe, helping the plumbers see if there is a blockage or if the pipe itself has deteriorated enough to allow moisture to seep through. Once the problem is identified and located, they will dig a hole above and access it.
If the camera locates a block, the plumbers will see if it caused by domestic waste or root balls. In case of a small root ball, they will push a mechanic auger with teeth on the front to saw through the roots and clear the pipe.
However, if domestic waste or a large root ball are choking the pipe, the plumbers will use hydro-jetting to clear it. If the problem identified during the drain inspection is damage to the structure of a pipe, plumbers will fix the problem with the “pipe lining” or “fracturing” method.
Once the sewer problem is resolved, it is a good idea to schedule a regular inspection of the entire system so no problem is allowed to develop to a point where it becomes destructive.
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