Running a video camera through the household sewer pipes (typically from the house to its connection to the public sewer system) can be used to evaluate the type and condition of underground pipes, and to identify problems like leaking or broken joints, intruding roots, blockages, corrosion or collapsed pipes. Homeowners might have a video inspection done to find the cause of periodic sewer backups or other ongoing problems, or when selling or buying an older house.
A camera on the end of a long cable is fed through the sewer line and sends back images that can be viewed on a monitor and may be recorded for later viewing. A stream of water from the house may be run through the pipes during the inspection to make it easier to move the camera and to provide an “up” visual reference.
Video sewer inspections are not typically included in a standard home inspection, and are usually ordered separately, if needed. Many experts recommend doing a video sewer inspection on a house built more than 25 years ago. Prior to 1984, many homes were constructed with clay sewer pipes, which are easily broken or crushed. A video sewer inspection may also be helpful if water is backing up inside the house or crawlspace, if there are large trees in the yard near the sewer or if the ground has moved or settled near the sewer line.
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