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Locating a Faulty Sewer Line

While some plumbing issues can go unnoticed for quite some time, that typically isn’t the case with your sewage system. Weird gurgling noises coming from a drain or a horrendous smell coming from one of the drains are just a couple of the many signs behind a sewer line issue. Luckily, in the year 2020, we have more than a few cool tools in our arsenal to make this process as easy as possible. In today’s blog, we’ll discuss how camera inspections are an absolute must when it comes to preventing drain and pipe problems!

For those new to our blog, Stine-Nichols Plumbing is a Kansas City-based plumbing company. Since opening the doors to our shop in 2014, we’ve consistently taken pride in providing reliable repairs and knowledgeable advice WITHOUT breaking the bank. We understand plumbing issues aren’t always the funnest of times for homeowners and do our best to ensure all issues are resolved as quickly as possible. To learn more, feel free to fill out this form HERE or give us a call at (816) 348-3481. 

Now on to the topic at hand: everything you need to know about inspection cameras!

When Do You Need a Camera Inspection

Even though sewer inspection cameras can be valuable for so many reasons (as we’ll get into later on in this blog), the truth is you don’t need them for every plumbing job. For most routine clogs or minor issues, an experienced plumber is going to be able to resolve the issue without a camera inspection. However, for those instances where your sewer line continues to back up or something else seems off, a plumbing professional is going to suggest a sewer line camera inspection to see what you’re really working with!

Here are a few of the more common noticeable signs that should prompt any homeowner to call in a plumber:

  • Funky Smell or Raw Sewage – In normal everyday life, you shouldn’t have foul odors inside or around the house. So, when these do randomly pop up, you’re likely looking at a sewer line issue. While it could be nothing, chances are this could be a sewer line issue or even water damage. 
  • Sewage Back-Up – Whenever you flush the toilet or run a drain, the sewage should be going down your pipes, not the other way around! If this happens to be occurring with just one of your drains, you may be looking at an issue with just that one drain. However, if this is a common occurrence with the toilets, sinks and so on, then it’s likely more serious.
  • Grass Growing Quicker than Normal – Does it seem like you’re consistently mowing the grass, even though it hasn’t rained that much? Well, if you have a crack in the sewer line, all of that water is going to need somewhere to go. As a result, the grass will get much more moisture than normal. Another telling sign on this point is random soggy spots in your yard. If there’s been no rain for a week and your lawn is wet, there could be a sewer line problem.

While this doesn’t cover every possible scenario behind a sewer line issue, it certainly touches on some of the most common ones! If you’re noticing any of these issues (or a combination of them), you’re likely looking at a sewer line issue. A professional plumber will be able to utilize modern-day technology (like sewer inspection cameras) to get the job done as efficiently as possible!

Tree roots tend to be one of the popular culprits when it comes to sewer line failures. Particularly in some of the older Kansas City neighborhoods, tree roots can wreak havoc on buried sewer lines. They’re able to find their way into the smallest of openings and then expand once inside. We covered everything related to tree roots and plumbing in a recent blog post. Check it out HERE.

How a Sewer Camera Inspection Eases the Process!

Sewer line repairs or replacements can be messy jobs. There’s no way to sugarcoat it! As you can likely guess, the line is buried more than a few feet underground, which will require some excavating. Excavating is always going to be a requirement, however a sewer camera inspection can make this process ten times easier. Here’s how:

  • Pin-Point Specific Location – Perhaps, the biggest benefit of utilizing sewer inspection cameras is how precise they can be. You’re able to mark the exact location where the repair is needed and excavate there. In the past, trial and error was the only approach, which often led to having to tear up the entire front yard. Something that neither us, plumbers, nor the homeowners wanted to happen!
  • Save Homeowner Time and Money – We’ve mentioned it many times before here on the blog, but plumbing problems are never that much fun for a homeowner. Whether it be a water heater breaking down, clogged garbage disposal or anything else, you want the issue fixed as quickly as possible (and at an affordable price tag!). Well, with limiting the amount of excavation needed and identifying the problem correctly from the start, it truly is possible to do just that!
  • Technology that Continues to Improve – Just as every other industry has grown rapidly over the years in terms of technology, the plumbing industry is certainly not immune to technological advancements. Tankless water heaters, low-flow fixtures, you name it. On the topic of sewer camera inspections, it truly is amazing the capabilities in today’s world. From tablets showing the views inside the pipes to live HD feeds, it gives you a perfect view of what’s going on underground!

Staying Ahead of the Game

When it comes to residential plumbing, the best advice we can give fellow Kansas City homeowners is to take action when you notice something is off. Don’t wait until a pipe bursts and water is spraying everywhere to act on it. This is going to be too late and will ALWAYS result in you paying an expensive repair bill. 

In terms of sewer lines, this methodology will be a time and money saver! If you notice any of the noticeable signs mentioned above, get a plumber out to take a look. They’ll be able to determine whether or not a sewer camera inspection is needed! In the instances that it is, they can take a look inside your pipes and determine whether it’s just a minor blockage or an actual crack. As you might guess, the steps following this preliminary evaluation are MUCH EASIER when you know exactly what you’re working with!

Our skilled technicians are trained in using sewer camera inspection technology to fit in even the narrowest of passages. They will be able to maneuver their way through tricky piping and accurately detect where the problem area resides! In order to give our customers the best price possible, we’ll only use sewer camera inspections when they are truly needed. If it’s a routine blockage that we can easily eliminate, we’ll save you time and money by cleaning it out immediately!

Call Your Friends at Stine-Nichols

Here at Stine-Nichols Plumbing, we’re more than willing to help out on plumbing jobs of all sizes. Whether that be simply unclogging a garbage disposal, installing a water heater or even a commercial design-build project, we’re here for all of your plumbing needs. Give us a call at (816) 348-3481 or fill out our free quote form to get started. We work throughout the entire Kansas City area, including many of the surrounding cities such as Overland Park, Lee’s Summit and Liberty.

By |2020-04-08T17:10:20-05:00April 8th, 2020|Residential Plumbing, Tips and Tricks|