Taking Care of the Sewer Line
One of the worse things that can happen to a business, especially a restaurant, is sewer backup! As a business, the public doesn’t want to know that it can have the same issues they have at home! But, alas, they do and that is why, along with grease trap service and on-time deliveries, you should have a routine sewer line inspection.
What does a sewer inspection consist of?
Any business in a city or town is going to be connected to the city sewer system, and if your business is located outside of the city limits, you’ll probably be on a septic system, which we will address later in this article.
A sewer line is typically 5 to 6 feet deep under the structure. So, how is a sewer line inspection going to inspect this line? Today, sewer inspection companies have new sewer inspection equipment and technology that makes this process so much easier, the inspector may not even get dirty! A sewer inspection and cleaning are usually done at the same time.
That equipment includes a specifically designed camera that connects to a flexible cable. It is placed into the sewer line, usually at the clean-out point, and is pushed through the sewer line. Inspection will come from the camera relaying pictures and/or video back to a computer.
If you’ve been wondering, “How do I know if there are roots in my sewer line?”, once this cable and camera have been inserted into the sewer line, the plumber will know quick because the camera won’t be able to pass through the sewer line, inspection halts as they remove whatever is blocking the line, including tree roots.
At this point, the plumber is going to get dirty as they start digging where the camera has stopped. Once the blockage is removed, they’ll continue with the sewer line inspection until they have reached the end of the line.
Before the plumber starts their sewer line inspection, they’ll ask you if you’ve been experiencing any problems. You can help by letting them know if you’re having any of the following issues:
- Frequent clogs in the bathroom or kitchen sink
- Frequent backed-up toilets
- Gurgling sounds as sinks drain or from the toilets when flushed
- Slow draining bathroom or kitchen sinks
- Sudden drop in water pressure
- Banging or whistling sounds from water lines
- Puddles of water around the building or landscaping
- An offensive odor around the exterior or inside the building
What is a sewer scope inspection?
A sewer scope inspection is visible on a video as described above with the camera and flexible cable. The inspection is done of the lateral sewer line that leads from your place of business to the city tap.
How much is a sewer line inspection?
The pricing for sewer line inspections varies from city to city, county to county, there isn’t any set pricing to quote. As a business owner, you should get a few estimates by phone before scheduling this service. But keep in mind that whatever the cost may be is cheaper than having to shut your place of business down for sewer line repairs.
Even if you can keep your business open while sewer line repairs or replacements are being done, chances are your customers are going to be steered away by the odor and mess, especially if your business is a restaurant.
What does a septic inspection consist of?
There are four main components to a septic system and the septic inspection will include all four of the components and more. Those three components are:
- The Septic Tank
- The Drain Field
- The Drain Lines
- The Distribution Box
- The Soil
A professional contractor trained and experienced in septic inspections will perform the following after locating the septic tank:
- Remove the tank covers.
- Inspect the inlet, outlet baffle, and partition wall.
- Inspect the operation level of sewage.
- Locate the chamber of the pump, CK pump, alarm operation, and the float.
- Dig test holes in the septic bed area to determine the below-grade effluent level.
- Inspect the condition of the drain lines and trenches.
How long does it take to do a septic inspection?
A thorough septic inspection should take a maximum of 2 hours. If there are any issues or problems, it could take longer, but worth the expense and time if the issues and problems can be addressed then and save you any downtime later.
As a business, you need to keep your business in operating mode, and a septic or sewer line inspection is key to letting that happen. Schedule this a minimum of once a year, twice a year if your building has previous issues with the plumbing.
Always get a signed inspection certificate and keep it readily available for any possible city inquiry. It isn’t unusual for a city health inspector or code compliance officer to drop by and request these types of documentation.