Why You Might Need a Sewer Inspection
Anytime you buy a home or have owned one for several years and with that comes general maintenance which can be found with home inspections before they become larger and more significant. You may think of plumbing when considering a home inspection, but getting your lateral sewer line inspected often doesn’t come top of mind. It is, however, a very important ancillary service. A sewer scope inspection is performed by using a tiny camera to video record the lateral sewer line in a home that leads from the foundation of the exterior house cleanout to the main sewer line (or if necessary by removal of toilet). The recording can show potential problems with the pipeline. Sewer scope inspections are typically recommended for all new purchases, homes with trees and vegetation or homes older than 20 years. There are benefits to getting a sewer scope done and some risks if you forego it.
Causes of Sewer Problems
There are many different reasons why your lateral sewer line could have problems. One of them is tree roots. The roots like to soak up the water the pipes carry—they find a small crack in the line and push their way through. This can block the sewer line, causing plumbing issues. Settling is another potential issue a sewer scope could find. This happens when a sewer line sinks down into the ground and build-up occurs. Plumbers call these trenches “bellies.” The actual land itself can move too, causing problems known as ground shifting—earthquakes, groundwater tables, and excavations can all cause this. Older homes tend to have clay or concrete sewer lines, easily creating hazardous cracks.
Plumbing Issues and Indicators
There are certain telltale signs to look for when determining whether your lateral sewer line is damaged. One is a foul odor. If there’s a bad smell coming from your drain, it might be an indication that something is wrong with your sewer line. A wet and soggy lawn may also suggest your house has a busted line. The moisture caused by a broken pipeline makes the sewer susceptible to rodents and insects, which could ultimately enter your house through the pipes. Mold and mildew are another consequence of a leaky pipe. And lastly, broken slabs and wall cracks are an indication that you could have compromised piping. Fortunately, all these problems can be discovered by a sewer scope inspection.
Benefits and Risks
A typical sewer scope inspection costs between $150 to $225 dollars (or low as $75 if scheduled with your home inspection) and takes less than an hour to perform, depending on the house. This is small compared to the thousands of dollars per foot you may spend fixing your lateral sewer line if you don’t catch the problem in time. The benefit of getting a sewer scope inspection done is having peace of mind knowing there are no issues with your main sewer line. The risk of not having one done is the financial burden it could carry months or years down the road if something goes unexpectedly wrong. If you don’t get one, you could end up digging up your yard. Better safe than sorry!
HERE IS WHAT WE MIGHT FIND
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A SEWER LINE INSPECTION CAMERA?
HOW DOES A SEWER LINE INSPECTION CAMERA WORK?
Your professionally trained sewer solutions specialist inserts a flexible rod into the pipe. The rod is equipped with a high-definition video camera at its tip. The flexible rod allows the camera to travel through the pipe while sending a video signal back to an HDTV monitor. The technician can inspect the entire length of a pipeline and make a digital recording of the inspection for future reference. The camera snakes are equipped with bright LED lights that completely illuminate the inside of the pipe to reveal cracks, clog sources or structural problems.
WHAT PROBLEMS CAN BE IDENTIFIED USING A SEWER LINE CAMERA?
A sewer inspection video camera allows the service technician to see any problems with the pipe. This might include root intrusion, cracks, punctures, corrosion, or misaligned pipe sections. The camera will also identify grease buildup, leaks and obstructions. A follow-up video inspection can be conducted after service is performed to verify that the pipeline has been properly cleaned or repaired.
WHEN SHOULD MY PIPES UNDERGO AN INSPECTION USING A SEWER LINE INSPECTION CAMERA?
This type of inspection is recommended if you experience repeated sewer or drain line backups, slow drains or clogs. Additionally, realtors and prospective homeowners often see the cost benefit of conducting a professional video inspection of sewer pipes before purchasing a home. The sewer inspection will determine whether the sewer line is free of problems that could lead to expensive future repairs.
In short, getting a sewer scope inspection can save you money and hassle. It’s best to schedule one now because you never know what problems you may find later.
****Remember inspections don't cost you money they save you money.****