Expanding Services Means Happy Customers – And Add-On Fees

New tools increased productivity and revenue for River Valley Septic.
Expanding Services Means Happy Customers – And Add-On Fees
River Valley Septic owner Regan Wilson uses an inspection camera by Spartan Tool to see whether the end of a line is now clear.

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In 2010, after Regan Wilson established River Valley Septic Inc. in Riegelsville, Pennsylvania, he worried constantly about finding enough work to keep the doors open and the lights on. Within two years, however, he went from famine to feast, which started a search for new partners – the mechanical kind – that could help him work more efficiently.

“I went from worrying about where the next job was coming from to worrying about how I was going to get everything done,” Wilson says. “So I started looking for tools that could help me do more in a day. And I wanted to be able to carry those tools on my truck and charge customers an add-on (fee) when I used them.” 

Two of his most valuable machines are a toolbox jetter (3,000 psi at 5 gpm), made by Advance Pump & Equipment, and a Spartan 200 pipeline inspection camera and locator, made by Spartan Tool LLC. He bought both machines at the Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment & Transport (WWETT) Show. He uses the jetter to unclog septic system lines; he deploys the camera primarily for locating septic tanks and distribution boxes. 

“The jetter is a great add-on tool,” Wilson says. “It’s one of the better investments I’ve made in equipment. I can get a line open in a fairly short period of time and get a nice add-on sale at the same time. And it makes customers happy because I’m already there and they don’t have to call a plumber and wait to get the problem resolved. They’re usually very happy that I have a jetter on the truck.” 

Wilson also says the Spartan inspection camera is a great time-saver and revenue enhancer. “Instead of looking for a needle in a haystack, you know right where you’re going,” he says. “I’ve found tanks in a matter of minutes instead of probing for a half-hour or an hour.” 

In addition, using the camera often generates more work by disclosing problems that Wilson can fix while he’s on location, generating additional revenue. For example, he might use the camera to quickly locate a distribution box, then find it needs leveling or even discover it needs to be replaced. Moreover, septic system inspectors occasionally call him and ask him to locate difficult-to-find tanks or d-boxes, and if the system needs repairs or the tank needs to be pumped, he usually gets the call, Wilson says. 

For more on River Valley Septic, check out the profile in the July issue of Pumper magazine.


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