How CCTV Sewer Inspections Catch Costly Issues Before They Escalate

March 18, 2024

hk technician performing a cctv sewer inspection

Individual municipal sewer systems are worth millions, if not billions of dollars on average, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Likewise, industrial facilities managing their own underground infrastructure have a lot of money tied up in pipelines and systems for wastewater collection. Dollar amounts vary depending on the respective size of the community or business in question, but one thing is for sure: those who neglect preventative maintenance measures like routine sewer system inspections are much worse off. Utilizing cutting-edge technology like closed-circuit television (CCTV) sewer inspection cameras, you can ensure your multi-million dollar sewer infrastructure remains an asset rather than a liability.

Through regularly scheduled sewer pipe video inspections, city planners and industrial operations managers can enlist professionals to detect and fix defects before serious damage occurs. A trusted pipe inspection company can help you pinpoint problem areas, plan ahead for future budgeting needs and avoid the fallout of a failing sewer system.

Why Proactive Sewer System Inspections Are Necessary

A sewer system inspection allows professionals to identify looming issues in municipal or industrial pipelines and restore them to like-new condition. Problems like cracks, leaks, corrosion and tree root invasion are caught and addressed early, extending the pipe’s lifespan for maximum longevity and performance.

Early detection is especially important because by the time you notice obvious signs of sewer distress, such as overflowing sewage and angry homeowners reporting backups, the damage is done. With the appropriate equipment and experience to comprehensively evaluate your sewer system beyond the surface level, pipeline professionals are able to make an educated recommendation for the most effective treatment plan before issues escalate.

Sewer System Inspection Methods

A visual sewer inspection helps determine if a sewer’s condition warrants intervention, but sewer system inspection methods using technology like sonar equipment or CCTV cameras ultimately provide a more precise diagnosis. A professional pipe inspection company likely employs one of these more advanced methods to pinpoint the problem area for your peace of mind.

man performing cctv sewer inspection for hk solutions group.

Visual Sewer System Inspections

Visual sewer inspections are less formal and detailed than other sewer system inspection methods. Since a visual inspection is typically limited to what you can detect aboveground, this technique is not a reliable indicator of pipeline status. A multitude of issues can be present within pipelines not visible to the human eye. By the time you notice warning signs like flooding or deteriorating manholes or sinkholes, the issue has already advanced enough to affect sewer pipe performance, leaving you exposed to more costs and complications in the aftermath.

Even if you hire a professional to dig up the area to get eyes on the pipeline, you’re left with destruction, the burden of restoring and repaving the area and the risk associated with pipe entry. If you’re concerned about the quality of municipal or industrial sewer infrastructure, enlist a professional pipe inspection company specializing in no-dig solutions to take a deeper look.

Sonar Technology for Sewer Inspections

Sewer system inspection methods have evolved over time to integrate technology, including sonar equipment. In a sonar inspection, sound-wave technology rotates its way through the pipeline, capturing abnormalities as it goes, including debris, scale and other evidence of deterioration. Sonar technology is helpful in providing a black-and-white portrait of your pipeline’s condition and defects, but it doesn’t offer much detail besides where the defect was detected. It also struggles to accurately detect issues like corrosion or cracks, meaning these serious threats can continue to wreak havoc on pipelines despite what appears to be a clear inspection.

Real-Time CCTV Sewer Inspections

CCTV sewer inspections bring pipeline interiors into focus, televising the footage in real time while a certified technician monitors the nearby display. Municipalities and industrial facilities taking a proactive approach with routine sewer pipe video inspections gain the flexibility to plan ahead for emerging rehabilitation needs. As a result, you’re less likely to contend with an expensive emergency or reputation-ruining downtime.

By working with an experienced pipe inspection company, you’re ensuring that issues are not only identified early on but also that the appropriate rehabilitation method is applied in a timely fashion to restore full functionality to the pipe. CCTV pipe inspection technology eliminates the need to dig up or enter the pipeline to locate defects, making it one of the most convenient and cost-effective sewer system inspection methods available.

Benefits of CCTV Pipe Inspections

CCTV pipe inspections enable preventative maintenance for sanitary and storm sewer systems, allowing professionals to prioritize repair needs and plan for associated costs while keeping the infrastructure intact. Compared to destructive sewer system inspection methods involving digging or entry, CCTV sewer inspections are much less invasive, localizing rehab needs to a precise area of the pipeline.

Investing in routine CCTV pipe inspections upfront prevents potential hazards and sewer damage that would require a system replacement. A sewer replacement job costs thousands of dollars directly, along with the restoration costs and losses incurred due to any downtime. A proactive approach with CCTV technology provides the best outcome for municipal and industrial sewer systems, boasting many benefits, including:

  • No entry required, ensuring safety for everyone on site
  • Camera works in a wide range of pipe diameters, providing a visual for otherwise difficult-to-access pipelines
  • No digging required, allowing utilities, operations and traffic to continue undisturbed
  • Advanced precision and accuracy, enabling the recommendation of cost-effective pipe repair solutions
  • Quick process resolves issues sooner, minimizing labor costs
  • Data recorded and televised in real-time for on-the-spot analysis as well as future planning needs
  • Environmentally friendly and safe
  • Peace of mind

cctv sewer inspection technician reviewing inspection footage. 

How to Choose a Pipe Inspection Company for Your CCTV Sewer Inspection

Before hiring a pipe inspection company, be sure to vet out service providers who lack the experience, equipment or reliability to get the job done. One way to spot a diamond in the rough is to look for relevant certifications and credentials related to sewer or pipeline inspections. Certification indicates a company has undergone all of the necessary training and experience to provide safe, quality CCTV sewer inspections. Another consideration to keep in mind is what techniques or technology the company uses to perform inspections. If they don’t have state-of-the-art CCTV pipe inspection technology or other no-dig, trenchless solutions, you’re in for more mess, more expenses and more downtime.

HK Solutions Group is the premier CCTV pipe inspection company serving municipalities and industrial facilities across the country. Our personnel is PACP-certified to provide pipeline analysis and diagnose a variety of issues in various sewer structures, including pipelines, manholes and more underground infrastructure. We utilize some of the latest and greatest tools and technologies in the industry, including our partnership with SewerAI™ for 3D manhole inspections and CCTV pipe inspections to detect interior deficiencies as small as 1mm in size. When you want a sewer system inspection that saves time and money, HK is your go-to for video inspections and trenchless maintenance solutions to keep your pipelines in prime condition.

Ask About Using SewerAI™ & Pioneer™ for the Most Advanced CCTV Pipe Inspection Technology Available

No matter how much experience and training a sewer pipe video inspection technician has, the human eye is subjective and cannot see all. A technician is only as good as the technology available to them, which is why HK Solutions Group utilizes advanced tools like SewerAI™ and Pioneer™ to aid in speedy, accurate diagnosis within sewer systems. Certified by NASSCO, the authority for underground infrastructure standardization, SewerAI™ is our preferred digital program to capture inspection video and collect data in real time, allowing us to reduce the time it takes to report our findings back to you.

Within SewerAI™, Pioneer™ is a cloud-based storage portal that automatically syncs any footage collected during a real-time inspection. Pioneer™ grants your team 100% visibility into the sewer pipe video inspection process with footage stored and available for your review at any time. In the meantime, our technicians evaluate the inspection footage collected through the lens of artificial intelligence. Programmed to detect all features and damage within failing pipelines, SewerAI™ eliminates the risk of human error by denoting sewer issues as small as 1mm in size.

Using our decades of expertise servicing sewer systems of all shapes and sizes, we know how to analyze data to provide an informed recommendation to address the most urgent issues first. We provide a comprehensive report within 15 business days of the initial inspection, at which point we’ll sit with you to discuss our findings and future options for rehabilitating the identified defects. Finally, we work up estimates for any associated costs to help you better budget for future repairs in your community or facility.

Industrial Facilities & Municipalities Trust HK for Detailed Sewer Pipe Video Inspections

HK combines our advanced CCTV sewer inspection technology with highly trained technicians who apply the utmost attention to detail. If there’s a problematic crack, leak, blockage or corrosion in your sewer pipes, we’ll spot it and propose the most cost-effective solution to nip the issue in the bud. Whether you’re interested in a CCTV sewer inspection or looking for a proactive partner to provide routine sewer inspections and maintenance, HK has the team for the job. Call (515) 283-0500 to discuss our sewer pipe video inspection capabilities, or contact us below to get started today.

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