What to Expect From a Camera Inspection of Your Sewer System

Sewer repair always starts with a camera inspection.

If you’re already at this page, you are probably past the point of wondering why your sewer lines keep backing up.  Chances are you’ve had the drain cleaners out multiple times and finally one of them was honest enough to tell you that you have a cracked pipe.

Now it’s time for a thorough camera inspection of your home’s sewer and drain system.  Here’s what to expect:

  1.  Price:  Camera inspections can range anywhere from $0 to $500.  Here’s a bit of advice: If a camera inspection is free, run for the hills.  Sewer camera equipment is expensive and requires regular maintenance.  Gas isn’t cheap either.  The reason they’re not charging you for an inspection is probably because they are commissioned plumbers that are primed and ready to sell you something you don’t need.  We see it all the time.  If a camera inspection is over $250, you’re most likely paying for advertising costs.  These are usually the big guys you see on TV and hear on the radio.  They too, usually have commissioned plumbers that will give outlandish bids to unsuspecting customers in order to feed their giant advertising overhead.
  2. Scheduling:  Most home and property owners get frustrated when a tech can’t come out and inspect their sewer lines until the next week.  Here’s some advice from professionals:  Don’t rush this!  The last thing you want to do is rush a repair that should last a lifetime.  Repairing sewer lines is an extensive process so home and property owners should take their time and find the best company that is going to give 100% focus and dedication to their property.  Your house is not going to fall over tomorrow, or next week, or next month so find a good contractor that has 20+ years of experience, family owned, and someone you trust.  Ask your neighbors.  Try www.GoodContractorsList.com.  They offer a $10k guarantee on all their contractors.  Websites like Yelp.com and Google Reviews can be helpful, but you never know if the reviews are real or fake.
  3. When your camera technician arrives:  He or she will probably want to take a look around the house first and obtain a good idea of where all your plumbing fixtures are.  It is common to see what are called, “capped” or “dead” lines that can throw a technician off when locating your leaks.  The quicker he/she can eliminate “dead” or “capped” lines, the quicker he/she can finish the testing process.  The technician will most likely start at the main sewer “cleanouts” usually found in the front flower bed.  Sometimes cleanouts can be found in the back or even the side of a house or building.  It is best to find these before the technician gets there.  If neither you nor the technician can find your cleanouts, you may have to have them installed.  Sewer camera technicians can also use vent stacks on the roof to access certain areas of your sewer system.
Camera technicians can use vent stacks to access sewer lines.
Camera technicians can use vent stacks to access sewer lines.

4.  Request a video:  Most home and property owners never think to request a copy of the video inspection.  This is something you should request before you even make the appointment.  With a copy of the video inspection you can request competitive bids without having to pay for another inspection.  If they do not offer copies, RUN!  They are going to sell you something you don’t need.  I guarantee it.

Follow us on FB, twitter, and LinkedIn for more advice on slab leak detection and repair.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *