sewer video inspection

Sewer Video Inspection

A sewer video inspection shows what is wrong or will go wrong in your drain and sewer lines. Sewer backups are a common plumbing problem in Pittsburgh, especially with all the sewer mains overflowing from excessive rain water. Whether your home is older or newer doesn’t make a difference. Take a look at my sewer videos and see what a sewer inspection can reveal.

Sewer video inspection

Pipe line video inspection is a form of telepresence used to inspect the interiors of pipelines visually. It’s frequently used and has become a common everyday tool for plumbers when they clean out/snake sewer lines. When a plumber snakes out a sewer line and discovers roots or other defects in the pipes he will typically perform a video inspection to identify the problem(s).

What kind of pipes have problems?

Usually, older pipes will have problems. For example, cast iron pipes get a build up of solid waste that sticks to the inner walls of the pipe. Separations of the joints occur in terracotta/clay sewer pipes. Terracotta pipes settle and come apart under ground and are susceptible to tree roots forcing their way inside them.

Broke terracotta pipe
narrowed down drain, sewer video inspection
Cast iron sewer pipe partially clogged


grease trap drain
Grease build up




clogged soil stack
Clogged soil stack

Newer sewer lines (plastic pipes) also have problems. Generally, problems don’t occur in new sewer lines, but in rare occasions when plastic sewer lines are installed incorrectly they will cause backups.


Have you ever wondered what roots look like in a sewer line? If you’ve never seen a terracotta pipe clogged with roots, here’s a video I took of a sewer line I snaked recently. The customer had called another plumber four months before calling me for the same problem. When I opened their sewer line, I suggested to them that I come back and perform a video inspection of the pipe. It’s possible to open the line and yet still have some roots remain that will cause a clog in the future. They agreed to the video inspection.

If you look at my video below closely, you can see an area of the pipe clogged with roots:

A newer sewer with the wrong fall…

As I mentioned above, newer sewer pipes typically don’t have problems. But there are occasions where a sewer line gets installed poorly and ends up either breaking or having the wrong pitch or fall on the sewer line.

Here’s a video inspection I did of a sewer recently that showed back fall on the PVC pipe draining the homes bathrooms and kitchen plumbing. I took the video inside the basement and went through the floor drain just past the soil stack that all of the plumbing fixtures in the home drained through.

If you look close in the video you can see the flowing water draining backwards after the toilet is flushed on the first floor.

Are you suffering from frequent sewer backups?

On going sewer backups that occur on an annual or periodic basis like every two to three years end up being a waste of money and can cost more than having your sewer repaired. Unexpected sewer back ups can also cause water damage to personal property. If a sewer backs up during one of the torrential downpours Pittsburgh gets, your basement could flood out!

And when a residential basement has a sewer backup, it isn’t pretty. It will cause thousands of dollars of property damage depending on how high the water rises. And the smell is something you’ll never forget.

Get your sewer video inspected!

Whether or not you have on going sewer back ups doesn’t necessarily mean your sewer line is okay! If you live in a new or older home, you may have a sewer line problem and not know it until you see sewage rising up in your basement.

Just making sure your sewage is flowing properly to the main public sewer by having Vince do a video inspection could save you a bundle. Click to schedule a sewer camera inspection with Vince.

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