Business Diversification – Sewer and Drain Maintenance

Keeping sewer and drainlines clean and clear of debris and root blockages may require a few extra tools, but the steady work can also provide a consistent revenue steam for pumpers looking to diversify their service offerings. Here are several push cameras, jetters, line locators, root control tools and cable machines to consider.
Business Diversification – Sewer and Drain Maintenance
Jetter/pressure washer combo unit

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Push Cameras

  Versatile inspection system

The Valu-Pac from Cyclops Electronics is a versatile mainline inspection system. It has the ability to inspect 4- to 60-inch lines, and identify and catalog defects using PACP-certified software. It has a capacity of up to 600 feet of TV/tow cable. 830/249-9756;

  Multifunction sewer/drain camera

The FB-PIC4188H portable multifunction sewer/drain camera from Forbest Products features a 130-foot cable with reel, a 10-inch LCD color monitor with DVR and microphone, a stainless steel color camera head with built-in 512 Hz sonde and a heavy-duty waterproof case. It has video and snapshot recording capability via SD card or USB flash drive. The 13-inch cable reel features a footage counter. 650/757-4786;

  Pan and tilt push camera

The Pan n’ Tilt Push Camera from Ratech Electronics can be used as a mainline camera, but can also fit into small lateral pipes. It can be purchased as a retrofit to existing systems, or as a stand-alone unit. It rotates 360 degrees and 210 degrees up and down, allowing technicians to view the pipe condition easily and in more detail. An optional steerable gooseneck assists the camera. Combining this camera with a control unit gives recording capability using SD/USB drives, and allows MPEG video capture and JPEG image capture of pipe inspections. Features include a 512 Hz sonde, an on-screen text display overlay system, electronic distance counter, time, date and eight pages of memory. Standard Gel-Rod cable length supplied is 200 to 400 feet. 800/461-9200;

  Lightweight pipe inspection camera

The Sparvision 200 pipe inspection camera from Spartan Tool is lightweight for a technician to maneuver, and outfitted with iPad technology that features telestration, allowing operators to actively draw on the screen. It features 200 feet of slick pushrod and a color self-leveling camera head to provide instant snapshots at any time. A full on-screen QWERTY keyboard and standard 512 Hz locating beacon come standard. 800/435-3866;

  Mini-camera inspection system

The ProCam DVR Ultra from UEMSI is a compact and lightweight color mini-camera inspection system. It includes a 10.4-inch color LCD monitor and a built-in DVR that records video files and photos to an SD card. The push reel is made of powder-coated steel for durability. The nylon-jacketed push cable has a water-blocking gel inside to prevent infiltration. The data display package includes on-screen digital footage and a full-size flexible keyboard. Options include an inline transmitter and rechargeable battery pack. 800/666-0766;


  Jetter/pressure washer combo unit

The Performance line of trailer-mounted jetter/pressure washer combo units from Amazing Machinery is designed for easy trailering, and the large water supply tank allows technicians to jet anywhere. A rear-mounted 12-volt electric jetter hose reel and SS rear stack mounted manual pressure washer and garden hose reels provide ample hose space. They come standard with 300 feet of jetter hose, two nozzles and a complete set of washdown accessories. The triplex ceramic plunger pump provides pressures up to 4,000 psi and flow rates up to 15 gpm. 800/504-7435;

  Skid-mounted jetter

The RCJ Series skid-mounted jetter from Cam Spray is offered in flows and pressures of 8 gpm at 3,500 psi and 7 gpm at 4,000 psi. It features a three-plunger industrial pump with pulse feature powered by a 688 cc Honda engine. It comes with 200 feet of jetter hose that can also be used to supply an optional portable reel cart available with 200 or 300 feet of jet hose. It is equipped with a 35-gallon buffer water tank with float control, powder-coated heavy tube frame, washdown gun and four-nozzle set. It easily mounts in the side door of a cargo van, on a truck bed or inside of a service truck. 800/648-5011;

  Diesel-powered hydrojetter

The O’Brien 7040-SC diesel-powered hydrojetter from Hi-Vac features plate-mounted polyethylene water tanks that have a 700-gallon capacity. The swinger reel pivots 190 degrees, providing access to the manhole regardless of how the trailer is parked. The hydraulically actuated reel has a variable-speed control. It is powered by a 65 hp Cummins diesel engine with Murphy safety gauges and variable electronic throttle control. The triplex pump is rated to 40 gpm at 2,000 psi. The standard 400-foot high-impact thermoplastic sewer hose is easy to clean, maintains stiffness and is abrasion-resistant. The tandem-axle trailer has a 6-foot channel frame and is rated to carry a full tank of water at highway speeds. 800/638-1901;

  Jetter/power washer

The Hot Jet II from Hot Jet USA features a V-twin Vanguard engine manufactured by a division of Toyota. The pump is a premium General Emperor Series that is triple V-belt driven. It generates a minimum of 8.5 gpm at 3,600 psi with either hot or cold water, and has a remote control system. It is mounted on a 5- by 12-foot diamond-plate steel deck trailer that has tandem axles and dual electric brakes for safety. The hot water deep cleans and emulsifies fats, oils and greases. The unit also can serve as an industrial-grade hot-water power washer. 800/213-3272;

  Convertible water jet pump unit

The 125 Series convertible water jet pump unit from NLB Corp. allows contractors to clean sewer and drain pipes, and then do other jobs requiring different pressures with the same unit. The 125 hp unit can be converted in about 20 minutes to any of eight operating pressures, from 6,000 to 40,000 psi. A wide range of flows from 4.4 to 32.5 gpm provides additional operating flexibility. It features a continuous-duty six-cylinder diesel engine (electric models are also available), and is trailer mounted for transport to job sites, with four-wheel electric brakes, heavy-duty axles and full DOT lighting package. All operating controls, including pressure gauge, rupture disc and bypass valve, are mounted on a separate accessory manifold. 248/624-5555;

  Portable water jetter

The KJ-3100 water jetter from RIDGID clears blockages in 2- to 10-inch drainlines with 3,000 psi working pressure and 5.5 gpm flow. Powered by a 16 hp gasoline engine, it is mounted on a heavy-duty, two-wheeled cart that fits through standard-sized doors and negotiates tight turns. The hose reel quickly detaches from the cart for easy loading into service vehicles, and permits easy access to hard-to-reach drains. The 3/8-inch jetter hose is 200 feet long. The unit includes pulse action, which allows the cleaning head and hose to maneuver through traps and bends. The high-pressure pump is a triplex design with a corrosion-resistant brass head. The unit comes with a propulsion nozzle that helps to carry the hose through pipes to obstructions, and a penetrating nozzle to cut through ice and sludge. 800/769-7743;

  Washdown pump

The Annovi Reverberi washdown pump from Water Cannon provides a maximum flow rate of 3.5 gpm and a maximum pressure of 2,500 psi, allowing the operator to adjust flow and pressure rates to effectively avoid backsplash. It can be mounted to most trucks and connected to existing hydraulic systems, as the pump’s hydraulic requirements start at 7 gpm and its pressure requirements range from 800 psi upward. Since it is hydraulic fluid driven, no electric power or gasoline is required; a water supply is all that is needed. Complete plumbing for easy installation is provided. 800/333-9274;


  Utility locating system

The UtiliGuard utility locating system from Ditch Witch features ambient interference measurement (AIM) that automatically scans the surrounding area for noise and recommends the best frequency among its 70 options. To help users make more accurate locates of obstructed utilities, it measures distances (depth) both horizontally and vertically to the utility. The system has a six-button, multi-language operator interface and a high-contrast LCD display to ensure visibility in all conditions, including direct sunlight. A dual-output feature allows users to connect the transmitter to two utilities at once, and the system is Bluetooth-enabled to simplify data transfers. Its housing has an IP65 rating. 800/654-6481;

  Pipe locator

The Gen-Eye Hot Spot pipe locator from General Pipe Cleaners features an easy-to-see auto backlit LCD display, with a “null’’ icon that indicates the pipe location and “camera’’ icon that confirms target location. Rated at IP65, it’s dust- and dirt-proof, and water resistant. It has passed the 1-meter drop test, while the screen passed the 18-inch steel ball drop test. Its total field antenna array allows operators to locate from any direction. Its line direction compass indicates the lay of the pipe. It features superior battery life, and locates two sonde frequencies, two power frequencies and four line frequencies. Operators can use the USB port to upgrade software in the field. 800/245-6200;

  Line locating device

The LineFinder LF2200 from Prototek Corporation locates frequency sondes or transmitter box between 16 Hz and 100 kHz using its “frequency sniffing” feature. It features preset support of 16 Hz (steel or ductile iron as well as cast-iron and nonmetallic), 512 Hz (cast-iron or nonmetallic) and 8 kHz (nonmetallic only) sondes, and traces underground metallic lines at four built-in industry standard frequencies using an external transmitter box (other frequencies can also be sniffed). It passively locates underground power at 50 or 60 Hz. Power frequency, as well as scaling in English or metric units, is user selectable. A series of LCD screens (with automatic backlight compensation) guides through the steps to locating sondes and lines with accurate position and precise depth. Locating is enhanced by handle vibration and LED feedback at key locating points. 800/541-9123;

  All-material locator

The AML (All Material Locator) from SubSurface Instruments is a highly sensitive instrument that utilizes advanced, ultra-high frequency radio waves to locate buried PVC pipes. It also locates nearly any subsurface material with an edge, including plastic, metal, wood, cable and concrete. It will function in clay, wet soil, snow or standing water without the need for a separate transmitter and receiver, wires, clips or clamps. It was designed specifically for use in the utility, water, gas, construction and cable industries. 855/422-6346;

Cable Machines

  Drain cleaning machine

The Model GO 68HD heavy-duty electric drain cleaning machine from Gorlitz Sewer & Drain is available in two different versions, either with an open steel reel or enclosed polyethylene drum, and can be outfitted with an optional power feeder. Standard configuration is 150 feet of 11/16-inch hollow-core cable, which should reach most blockages with a single reel. The unit weighs 185 pounds, and adding a loading ramp and electric winch to any vehicle makes transportation quick and simple. It is designed to clean pipes from 3 to 8 inches in diameter. 562/944-3060;

  Flexible leader cable

The LE151 Super Flex leader cable from MyTana Mfg. Company is a flexible cable used for leading main cables down a sewer or drainline with twists, turns, elbows, offsets, sweeps and other irregularities. Many contractors keep several leaders available for use in special situations. For instance, leaders with a slight bend 8 to 10 inches from the end can help force a single blade to the outside of the pipe. The leader is suitable for 3/4-inch cable, and is available with a choice of fittings to attach to existing cables and blades. Leader cables are available in other sizes. 800/328-8170;

  Interface controller

The vCam-5 Live View interface from Vivax-Metrotech Corp. allows technicians to connect to the control module by Wi-Fi or RJ45 Cross Talk Cable. When connected they can stream video, capture JPEG images and record directly to a hard drive or other storage device. In addition they can access the control module’s internal hard drive and any USB thumb drive or SD card plugged into the control module. They can see a list of the videos or pictures on the hard drive and play them in the video player or download them. An app that runs on either the iPhone or Android platform allows them to stream video to smartphones and tablets, capture, email or text still images, and record video to the device. Up to five devices can be connected to the control at once. 800/446-3392;

Root Control – Chemical/Mechanical

  Towable jetter nozzle

The Cnt-r-KUT Tow Hook model towable jetter nozzle from Arthur Products allows for pressurized water to be applied by the integration of a towing nozzle that can be pulled through the line. The technician can also pull a line from point A to point B if required. It is flexible enough to conform to damaged or deformed lines and can easily be trimmed in the field to fit virtually any line from 2 to 8 inches in diameter by attaching a 3/8- or 1/2-inch NPT hose to one end. It is available in standard and mini sizes. 800/322-0510;

  Chemical root control service

Duke’s Root Control is a full-service company dedicated to keeping sewer systems free of tree root growth. Application of Razorooter II herbicide leads to extended pipe life, reduced SSO occurrences and maximized asset value. The company can customize a root-control program that integrates capacity, management operations and maintenance into each municipality’s O & M plan. They only apply EPA-registered products that do not negatively impact downstream treatment facilities and are shown to be non-cancer-causing. If a root-related stoppage occurs within two to three years after treatment, they will re-treat the line. 800/447-6687;

  Cutting pipe cleaner

The Picote Cutter Systems Smart Cutter, distributed by LMK Technologies, enables the removal of tuberculation and tree roots, and the reestablishing of branch lines in building drains and sewer pipes to be done easily through a single pipe access such as a clean-out. Service lateral pipes can also be reinstated after mainline lining by accessing a clean-out for insertion. It is suitable for use in 1 1/4- to 8-inch pipeline diameters. 815/433-1275;

  Low-torque cutting nozzle

Lumberjack cutters from NozzTeq are low-torque, variable-speed, multipurpose cutting nozzles powered by common sewer jetting or combination trucks. The cutting chains rotate at speeds of 10,000 to 50,000 rpm, depending on pressure and flow rate. They are designed to cut roots, but also clear concrete, tuberculation, grease, protruding laterals and other obstructions. Low torque means they won’t get stuck, won’t harm host pipe and won’t spin off the hose end. They have sealed, grease-lubricated bearings, and are water-cooled so they don’t need daily maintenance. The cutter drive shaft and turbine are made of hardened steel, and the supply tube is made of stainless steel, so the nozzle lasts for seven to 15 years of heavy use, and is easy to rebuild. Six models clear pipes from 3 to 48 inches. 866/620-5915;

  Foaming root control

Oblitiroot, a foaming sewer line root control product from Olvidium, has been formulated to use the maximum amount of the active ingredient, Dichlobenil, currently allowed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It comes in two pouches which, when combined, create a sticky foam with a latex base that can be applied through the clean-out or in the toilet bowl. The latex makes it stick to pipes and roots, which causes the Dichlobenil vapor to remain in the line to kill roots longer. 855/782-4531;

  Root intrusion formula

Registered with the U.S. EPA, RootX can be used by sewer departments to enhance their pipe maintenance programs and by drain cleaners as an effective tool and profitable add-on service. The foaming action lifts the root-killing active ingredient to the top of the pipe where 90 percent of intrusion occurs. It also sticks to the top of the pipe and roots to keep blockages caused by root regrowth from occurring for up to 12 months. 800/844-4974;


  Tank and line cleaning machine

The EZ-8 tank and line cleaning machine from Gamajet features a fluid-driven, versatile and durable design and is lightweight for easy handling and maneuverability. It can be customized to the customer’s specific needs, with options that include directional nozzles enabling usage in various tanks and vessels in a number of applications. It eliminates the need for confined-space entry, reducing time spent cleaning. It combines pressure and flow to create high-impact cleaning jets that deliver impingement force by rotating in a repeatable 360-degree pattern. It has a flow rate of 25 to 130 gpm and a pressure range of 20 to 1,000 psi. 877/426-2538;

  Thrusting sewer nozzle

The Warthog WHP-3/4 sewer nozzle from StoneAge Inc. offers strong forward thrust, easy field maintenance, replaceable nozzle tips, and handles long distances and inclines. The nozzle cleans 6- to 18-inch lines. The rear-facing jets are angled sharply and the centralizer fins are trimmed back. The nozzle features five jet ports, including a boring jet offset at 15 degrees, and four jets at 172 degrees. 866/795-1586;


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