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Thread: Water Jetting the main sewer line?

  1. #1
    Electrical Engineer jdf405's Avatar
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    Unhappy Water Jetting the main sewer line?

    Hi All,

    Last night I discovered that my main line to the street is clogged (the joys of sewage in the bathtub... ). This morning I had the plumber come out and he snaked it through fairly easily. My main is 3" and my house is about 55 years old in southern California (I'm guessing clay pipe).

    For another $100 they sold me on coming back to "water jet" the line and this comes with a camera view. I decided to go for it because I felt it was worth $100 to see what's going on down there. Is the whole water jet thing really worth it aside from the camera view?

    Thanks!
    Jonathan

  2. #2
    Plumber patrick88's Avatar
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    That is a good price for the Jetting.
    That is also a good price for the camera.

    The camera will show you any problems you may have like cracks or bellies. It can be worth the money to jet the line if you have roots in the line. If they are using the larger jetting machine line a trailor jet it will cut out any roots (4,000 psi) . The mini jet will not do a lot for your main. Unless you have a lot of grease or other soft stuff in your main.
    I'm just starting to work with an old friend of mine to bring solar electric and hot water systems, wind turbines, Flex Fuel Boilers, batteries, hydroponic gardening, books, pellet grills and more. Also the parts for DIY installation.

  3. #3
    Electrical Engineer jdf405's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. Hopefully they'll use the high pressure one! Eitherway, the info from the camera will be educational.

    I guess the whole budget is as follows:
    $175 for roto-route
    $75 for climbing on roof
    $29 for equipment

    $100 for jet (optional)

    Thanks,
    Jonathan

  4. #4
    In the Trades maintenanceguy's Avatar
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    Around here the big outfits are getting a lot more than that for drain service.

    The water jet and camera is a $100 sales tool to show you that you need more expensive work to be done. But that's not necessarily bad, if you do need more work done, it's good to know. It's good to know before it's an emergency so you can get a couple of estimates and budget to have it done.

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Ask for a copy of the video. Then, if you decide you don't want to do it right away, you can show it to the next guy for a second opinion.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  6. #6
    Plumber patrick88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jadnashua View Post
    Ask for a copy of the video. Then, if you decide you don't want to do it right away, you can show it to the next guy for a second opinion.
    I was the next guy for one of those videos before. The last guy did not see the 12" X 3" crack in the pipe. He got the 2 minor root balls, but missed the cause of the call. Sewer water leaking back thru the foundation wall.
    I'm just starting to work with an old friend of mine to bring solar electric and hot water systems, wind turbines, Flex Fuel Boilers, batteries, hydroponic gardening, books, pellet grills and more. Also the parts for DIY installation.

  7. #7
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default camera

    When the camera's eye leaves the house you may be able to see where your cleanout is and dig it up for use the next time it plugs up.

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