Maintaining Sewer Lines - Ravinia Plumbing
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Maintaining Sewer Lines

Maintaining Sewer Lines

We all know April showers bring May flowers.  But, if you are not careful, they can also bring flooded basements and yards caused by backed up sewer lines, causing major expense, inconvenience and perhaps even health issues.

There are several methods available for opening and maintaining sewer lines (as well as drain lines in the home).  Here we will discuss four and next month we will discuss the others

Rodding is the most common method used to open a slow or stopped line. Rodding equipment usually consists of a rodding machine, cables and a cutting head. The cutting head attaches to the end of a cable that is inserted into the sewer or drain line. The cutting head cuts through the different stoppages in an attempt to open the line. The coils in the cable then feed the cable into the sewer line to remove the debris from the line.

Jetting opens and scours drain lines with the use of high-pressure water. The jetter cuts through small root fibers, dirt, organic debris, grease and oil. Jetting is commonly used in restaurants and auto garages where grease from kitchens and oily sludge from automobiles collect.

Video inspection involves sending a camera down the sewer line to determine why a sewer or drain line has a problem. The camera head is attached to a stiff fiber-optic line, which is pushed into the sewer. Once the camera operator has positioned the camera to view the source of the problem, the problem has to be located above ground. A transmitter imbedded in the head of the camera allows the camera operator to locate the camera head above ground. Unfortunately the camera can only provide usable video if the sewer line is open and flowing.

Chemicals.  A combination of Bio-Clean and a root control chemical is the best chemical product combination for septic and sewer lines. Bio-Clean will eat any build-up of sewerage waste. It will not do anything to root growth, but it will keep the roots from accumulating debris.  Root growth can be treated with a root control chemical. The most effective chemical is Root-X. Another frequently used root control chemical is copper sulphate (CS). However, CS only kills roots that happen to extend to the bottom of the sewer line, leaving the majority of the root mass un-treated. Second, CS also kills the bacteria, fungus and molds that decay and remove the dead roots, leaving the dead roots behind to cause another line stoppage. Third, CS is actually a wood preservative that is used to treat telephone poles and fence posts. Treating dead wood (roots) just makes them stay in the sewer longer.

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Ravinia Plumbing, Sewer, Heating & Electric
575 Bond St,
Lincolnshire, IL 60069
P: (847) 579-5565
F: (847) 831-5694
Hours of operation: Mon.-Fri. 8:00-5:00, Sat. 8:00-1:30
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License #055-003586

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