In every modern home in the United States and worldwide, the drainage system encompasses the most important aspect of domestic sanitation. These pipes draw out used water from kitchen sinks, bath tubs, basins, and toilets. As an inseparable part of the lives of civilized people, the drainage system is always taken for granted – until they are broken.
When it comes to fixing clogged pipes, there are two well-known methods used. The plumbing snake method is an invasive procedure wherein technicians or mechanics use blades or corkscrew auger attached at the end of the cable to punch through the blockage. This cheaper alternative provides temporary relief, but it also has its own limitations. Designed to poke through solid obstacles, the plumbing snake cannot fix blockage caused by ‘buildup’ residue such as sludge, hair or other fine debris.
For difficult obstacles, a fool-proof system that is slowly becoming a mainstream practice is the relatively more expensive hydro jetting. In principle, this method shoots high-pressure stream through the drain to forcefully flush out the obstacle. Between 7,000 to 60,000 psi of water force, there is enough strength to unclog persistent blockage without bursting the well-condition pipes. Hydro jetting has come a long way since its invention during the 1950’s and now it is a guaranteed solution to the toughest plumbing maintenance work around.
Knowing When The Drains Need Fix
The overall hydro jet drain cleaning cost may not only limit itself to the actual service fee of the hydro jetting process. As with any systemic problem, a comprehensive diagnosis is necessary to investigate the conditions of the dysfunctional drainage pipe.
The obvious sign of a blockage in kitchen sink pipes is often noticed right after cleaning dishes when the large volume of water takes a very long time to get drawn out. The same can be said about the drains in the restroom basin or the tub. The worst case scenarios often feature residue shower water flooding out of the bathroom due to the completely obstructed floor drainage, or liquid waste seeping out of the toilet seat caused by the build-up of solid log jam somewhere within the sewage pipe. These instances already require assistance from plumbers.
The standard operating procedure of plumbing technicians is to inspect the supposedly blocked pipe. He or she will insert a cable tipped with a high-resolution camera in order to determine what type of problem plagues the interiors of the problematic pipe segment.
As mentioned in the early part of the article, some of the blockages may not necessarily require the expensive hydro jetting cost. Inspections also allow experts to assess other problems apart from clogging itself. In most cases, the inspection process is already included in the complete service package fee, depending on a particular service provider. According to the website called The Spruce, an inspection alone would cost anywhere around an average of $99 to $300.
Average Service Fee
The exact hydro jet drain cleaning cost will largely depend on several factors. These nuances include the length of the drainage segment that needs sluicing, the degree of clogging, and the projected time needed to completely deal with the problem.
On average, homeowners are looking at a conservative budget anywhere between $100 and $300 for hydro jetting alone. This estimate is usually quoted on simple drains like the kitchen or the bathroom floor. The budget for a more extensive and laborious system such as the main sewer line may cost an average of $600.
The overall hydro jetting cost already covers an average of one year warranty period. Similar problems resurfacing within the duration of the service contract already merit another hydro jet cleaning that is free of charge.
Other Related Costs
Considering the relatively expensive hydro jet drain cleaning cost, another good reason for beginning with drainage inspection has a lot to do with certain problems other than drainage clogging. As mentioned in previous part of the article, some drainage systems may require replacement of the pipeline segment. The enormous pressure of hydro jet streams can potentially do permanent damage to dented or decayed pipes.
In terms of replacement of the sewer line, Home Advisor estimates an average cost of $50 to $250 per foot. For a total cost to replace one kitchen sink drain pipe, Homewyse projects an estimate fee somewhere between $218.36 and $283.29.
DIY Investment Cost
Although hiring professionals is a standard practice for ordinary homeowners, one can also benefit from the alternative of doing things independently. The Do-It-Yourself option always works best for individuals who possess the working knowledge, practical skill and the right equipment to perform the task. For this part of the article, the hydro jetting cost would mean the overall amount one would expect for this lifetime investment.
Drain Pipe Camera
One of the key instruments that allow skilled homeowners to perform their own hydro jet drainage cleaning is the drain pipe camera. Standard operating procedures apply to all, especially to individuals who have no extensive experience as a plumbing technician. Having a high-resolution camera enables one to assess whether the problematic interiors is safe for hydro jetting.
Normally, the equipment used by plumbing companies would cost as much as $1000. However, one can purchase similar varieties at a much cheaper price. Good sewer cameras are available at Ebay, although exact costs for each product may vary widely. For instance, a completely assembled snake camera with a spinning wheel could cost $610.
Hydro Jet Machine
As for the exact cost of the hydro jet machine, the variations are largely determined by the size, brand and the condition, especially for items that are already classified as used. Ebay may sell hydro jet equipment either by components or as a fully assembled machine.
Case in point: a Trojan Trailer Mounted Sewer & Drain Line Jetter entails a fee of $13,299 while a smaller 62697 KJ-1750 C cart-loaded counterpart from Ridgid is sold at $3,240.50. Homeowners must also consider whether or not the shipping fee is already free upon purchase.