For many types of clogs, all it takes to deal with one is a trusty plunger or even a bottle of your favorite drain cleaner. But there are times when busting clogs require a professional's touch, which is where a professional drain cleaning service comes in.
Your drain cleaning contractor may decide to use video inspection equipment to take an in-depth look at your drain and sewer lines. The following explains how it's done and why it should be a part of your drain cleaning service.
How It Works
In order to visually inspect your home's drainage lines, your drain cleaning contractor will feed a flexible line into the drain you're having problems with. A miniature video camera attached to the end of the flexible line sends real-time footage of your drainage pipes, allowing your contractor to pinpoint any obstructions, debris and other types of blockages.
The video inspection camera not only displays the blockage, but it also relays the exact location of the blockage via radio transmissions. This gives your contractor the ability to make repairs and remove blockages without having to resort to guesswork.
Reasons to Have Your Pipes and Drains Inspected
A professional video inspection of your drain can reveal hidden problems with your drain and sewer system:
- There may be a larger blockage further down the drain that's only reachable with professional drain cleaning equipment.
- Tree roots can snake their way into drain pipes in search of water, causing blockages that often contribute to drain problems.
- Poorly sloped drainage pipes can also contribute to your drainage problems.
- If your home uses clay drainage pipes, those pipes could be crushed or broken. Most homes built prior to the 1980s use clay pipes.
Not only does a video inspection help uncover the problem, but it can also shed some light on how you and your contractor can take care of it.
Drain cleanings aren't the only time you can have a video inspection of your drainage pipes done:
- You should have a video inspection of your drains and sewer pipes done if you're thinking about selling your home. A video inspection can help put potential buyers at ease in regards to your home's plumbing.
- A video inspection can also help you determine if your existing plumbing can handle upgrades to your bathroom or kitchen. For instance, new kitchen and bathroom faucets can add greater strain on your drain and sewer lines.
How Much It Costs
According to recent estimates from CostHelper, the average cost of a residential video inspection runs about $250 to $500. This cost is highly dependent on the length of the drainage and sewer pipes, as well as the contractor's hourly rate or fee schedule. The cheapest inspections are often as little as $100, while a comprehensive inspection and clean-up could cost $800 or more.
Keep in mind that some contractors offer discounts or special promotional rates on video inspections done in conjunction with other plumbing services.
Can You Do It Yourself?
You're probably wondering if you could save money by performing your own video inspection. Although it seems like a good idea, there's a good reason why you might want to leave a job like this to the professionals.
Most of the consumer-grade video inspection scopes on the market lack the high-resolution imaging capabilities offered by the professional-grade equipment that most drain cleaning companies use. And if you wanted to use the same equipment that the professionals use, you'd end up spending thousands of dollars.
In the end, you'll end up saving more money simply by paying an experienced drain cleaning contractor for a video inspection instead of attempting the job yourself.
For more information, contact a local drain cleaning company like Gold Seal Plumbing.