Sewer Inspection – Every Homeowner Should Get One

A sewer inspection is generally used to view the interior of the main sewer line that travels from the house to the street when there are ongoing sewer issues, such as back-ups. There are many reasons one might consider a sewer inspection.

  • Ongoing issues with sewer back-ups
  • Plumber encounters suspected issues during a sewer cleaning, such as offsets, hard spots, obstructions, rough spots
  • Suspected sewage bubbling in yard
  • Foul odors coming from a draining sewer line
  • Home sales or purchases
  • General knowledge of older homes
  • Locating a sewer line, known trouble spot in the pipe, or septic tank
  • Locating an outside cleanout that has been covered over time.

A regular sewer inspection is vital for any home; even more so if the home is more than 20 years old. Older houses in the Kansas City area are often built on aging clay tile sewer pipes. This is significant because clay tile pipes are more vulnerable to root intrusion, cracks, and collapses. Even newer homes could be connected to an older sewer line. While most sewer lines last for around 40 years, that isn’t always the case. A sewer inspection can make sure that sewer pipes are clear of blockages and function properly for years to come.

Sewer inspections during home purchases are a rising trend. It’s always a good rule to know exactly what you are purchasing. This rule does not only apply to the visible parts of the home, but also to the buried sewer line, which could be quite costly to replace. Knowing the condition of the sewer line before purchasing can give you the tools you need to negotiate the price of repairs into the contract. It can also give you peace of mind knowing that the sewer line is in great, functioning condition. Furthermore, if you are selling a home, you can provide potential buyers with a statement from a licensed plumber stating that the sewer line is in good, working order.

Expensive Repairs

Most often, sewer inspection can be done quickly at a reasonable cost. On the other hand, if the sewer line has to be replaced, the costs can be significantly higher. When the integrity of the sewer line is compromised in small sections, it should be repaired as quickly as possible before leading to complete replacement.

Our trained plumbers can show you the inside of the pipe as they see it. They can explain the condition of the line and any repairs that are needed. Further, our plumbers can bid for a repair or replacement, as well as complete the job themselves.

Why hire several different companies to clean the drain, run a sewer inspection, then make the repairs that are needed, when you could hire one company from start to finish? Even better, if you hire us and mention this blog, we’ll credit the cost of the camera inspection to your final bill. Simply get your bid from your camera inspection, then let the dispatcher or technician know that you saw this blog. Your owed amount will be adjusted accordingly!

Toxic Danger

Besides the financial cost, sewer line backups can be very messy and also quite dangerous. Backups can cause flooding as well as leak toxic sewer gas, which is dangerous to humans and animals. Often, a sewer inspection will detect any problems before irreparable damage is incurred.


Most homeowners insurance policies do not cover a sewer line replacement when it is considered to be a result of “normal wear and tear.” However, a simple call to your insurance agent could allow you to add sewer coverage to your existing policy or take out a secondary policy. This type of coverage could allow for coverage on the sewer line repair and/or the cost of clean-up after a back-up. The policy could also cover loss of personal property due to sewage. Each company and policy is different, so your agent can explain your options.

Root Intrusion

Tree roots intrude into sewer pipes through small cracks and compromised joints. Over time they grow and expand, causing blockages and damage. When this happens, excavation is required for repairing the lines. When there are trees or large shrubbery near the sewer line, you should schedule a sewer inspection. Additionally, when roots are cleaned out of your drain, the technician can give recommendations to prevent further issues. Recommendations are based on the amount of roots removed from the drain, as well as the “feel” of the pipe when the technician cleans the drain. Some possible recommendations are regular maintenance every 6, 9,  or 12 months, root-killing foam, or a camera inspection.

Worn Out Pipes

Even new sewer systems can develop leaks and get blocked up, but there is even more risk for older systems. Older homes, in particular, that were built before modern city sewer systems, rely on septic tanks and/or lagoons. Over time, the old systems erode, crack, break, and collapse. It’s a good idea to have a sewer inspection to determine what type of system you have and its condition.

A sewer system allows waste and wastewater to be carried away from your home, ensuring sanitation and cleanliness. However, many homeowners may not understand the importance of sewer inspection.

A complete inspection of your sewer system – from exposed drain lines for the kitchen and bathroom to a video camera inspection of the main sewer line underneath your home – is the only way to know if there is a weakness, corrosion, or other damages that can lead to clogs, leaks, and breaks in the sewer line. If you are not sure on the condition of your sewer line, have ongoing sewer problems, or are in the home-buying process, you should call to schedule your sewer inspection as soon as possible. 

The plumbing and sewer inspection specialists at All-n-One Plumbing use video cameras to detect existing or potential plumbing problems. Sewer Inspection Video

Why Every Home Buyer Should Get a Sewer Inspection

When you’re buying a home, a sewer inspection is not part of the typical home inspection because it is buried underground. The only way to have the system inspected is to hire a professional. The cost is worth it because sewer repair can be expensive. Average repairs cost around $3000 – 5,000, and that’s if the problems don’t extend into the city street or right of way. Though some cities will cover repairs in their own streets, others make the homeowner responsible for the entire repair, including additional permits, bonds, and traffic control. As previously stated, it’s always best to know exactly what you are purchasing BEFORE you sign on the purchase. Our licensed plumbers can not only inspect the sewer line with a camera, they can also inspect any exposed drain line, water lines, gas line, or fixture throughout the home, so you know if any work is needed or any allowances need to be made during the purchase.

Never assume that just because you are buying a newer home that it won’t have a sewer problem. Any sewer line can develop issues. A sewer inspection is necessary for the accurate detection of existing sewer line problems. An increasingly popular option for detecting sewer line problems is the use of a sewer video camera. The process of scoping a sewer line allows a trained technician to pinpoint problem areas within your sewer system. With this information, our technician can provide you with options for spot repairs, clean-out installations, or sewer line replacements, if needed.


All-n-One Plumbing & Drains

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Serving the greater Kansas City area for over a decade