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Weirdest thing you have found during a pipe inspection

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  • Weirdest thing you have found during a pipe inspection

    Just thinking back to last year at the Pumper Cleaner show in Nashville. Some of our salesmen were telling us about weird things that their customers have found in pipes using SeeSnake. One example was a rat the someone took video of attacking the camera in a soil pipe. Just wondering if you guys had any interesting stories about things you have found during inspections.

  • #2
    A rat attacking the camera? Thats certainly one for the archives.

    My only interesting story regarding something very unusual while using a rental camera does not have the visual impact of a rat but was quite influencial in changing a large Dairy's underground layout during a a retrofit.

    While adding a 150 foot tall milk tank we were going to reroute a major wash down pit and boiler blow off drain line so that it would not be under or near the footings for the tank, it was also an older line from the plant that did not run to a testing station and ran out to a main the city wanted to discontinue.. We wanted to see the condition of the line we were to tie into so the contractor rented a Ridgid See Snake. About 50 feet in and directly below another very large storage tank there was a black void in the bottom of the pipe. My professional guestimate was about a 4 inch long hole along the entire bottom half of the pipe. As though a hub and the pipe in the hub had fallen away.

    We ran an approximate two and a half inch flow through the 8 inch line and every bit of it disappeared into the void. Had we added the large continuous flow of the other line an entire production line of the dairy may well have collapsed into the ground.

    The hole in the line was relined by another outfit that specialized in such work and the void under the pipe was filled with a grout to shore up the plant building. We also saw cut approximately 200 feet of concrete wide enough to safely install a new line into a new test station and then into the city main. The repaired line is still in service carrying the original production lines process waste to its new testing station.

    Years ago we would have just ran a lot of water through the line to be sure it did not back up. The See Snake saved that company a good sized fortune.

    This is the edited part. It was only a 105 ft tall tank not 150 as stated above. Still a tad larger than your babies milk bottle.

    [ 12-22-2005, 05:26 PM: Message edited by: plumber ]
    Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.


    • #3
      josh, glad to see your posting, we've run out of topics.
      the things i've found over the years are pretty common roots and the such.

      the more interesting things i've found was a high pressure gas line that the gas co. had run right through the 4'' clay line at a right angle. the problem was that the sewer was stopped up and i snaked it first. i nicked the hdpe high pressure line and caused a leak. amazing that over the last 5 years other plumbers never damaged this line. after videoing and locating the issue. the gas co paid the homeowner for their plumbing drain problems for the 5 years that the line was there.

      same thing with a telephone co building. a utility co bored a conduit through the the phone co's sewer.

      then the trained cockroaches that ran from my camera as i pushed the camera looking for a leak. it turned out that the roaches escaped from the no hub joint that looked normal. if it wasn't for the roaches, i would have never located the problem. i threw them some waste for a tip.



      • #4
        Icon 1 posted 12-22-2005 08:39 AM Profile for papadan
        I have a neighbor that has had a recurring problem with his main drain clogging up. Each time he calls me and I snake it out for him. The clog is right at 65' from the gutter drain that I use to enter. I run it 150' out to the main system in the center of the street. Last week he called and I run the drain, the next day he called again and I run it. The next day he called and said it was clogged again. He called another friend whose brother works for the metro sewer district. They brought out a SeeSnake. He had me run the drain first and watched where the clog was. They ran the camera down to the 65' mark and all of a sudden his camera went nuts. It was jumping up and down and slapping sideways against the pipe. He started pulling it back about a foot and stopped. There was 2 chipmonks staring right into the camera. The guy running it fell on his A$$ becuase it startled him. There was a small hole in the clay pipe and the chipmonks kept trying to clog up the hole to stop the sewage from getting into thier nest. The guy with the camera will not give us a copy of the tape yet. He has submitted a copy to the video show Americas funniest videos. He is hoping to win the 10 grand prize. It is funny as hell.

        papadan, i copied and posted your seesnake to this forum. i think you have all of us beat. would love to see that video. good luck.
        i would either put a short liner in the line, or if possible dig and replace a small section and add a cleanout at that point to shorten that 150' distance.



        • #5
          Looks like the same discussion going on in 2 places. LOL I am hoping to get a copy of the video as soon as the guy is finished trying to win with it. I am just a neighbor that owns a K75, he called in a plumbing contractor to fix the pipe and feed his new pets. LOL
          info for all: --- "I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me."