When you purchase a home, you’ll want to know the true condition of the property. Hire a professional for a regular home inspection, but also consider issues underneath the ground that you should know about before you close the deal. A sewer scope inspection helps detect issues in the sewer line. The inspector sends a special camera down the system to the street or septic tank to capture images and video of the piping. Here are a few reasons to request a sewer scope inspection.


Roots can tap into sewer pipes and cause a backup and slow drains. Once inside the pipes, roots from trees or shrubbery can block or slow the movement of water. During a sewer scope inspection, the camera will identify root balls or the beginning of a root invasion. If caught early, you might be able to remove the tree or shrub and continue to use the system safely. But if the roots have been growing for some time, a professional will need to dig up and replace that portion of the line.

Sewer Scope Inspection Examines Line Material

Sewer pipes can be made of PVC, iron, or steel. The material used usually depends upon the age of the home. Iron piping was the norm in homes built before the 60s and this material is prone to rust and corrosion over time. Steel sewer pipes are strong, but they too will eventually corrode. Modern PVC is sturdy and resistant to rust and other corrosive conditions. A sewer inspection can help you know if repairs have been made to an older home by identifying the type of plumbing pipe.

Drainage Issues

Most sewer lines use gravity to drain the waste away from the house. With gravity systems, a downward slope must be maintained. Shifting soil can cause the slope to become offset. Earthquakes, earth-moving or construction equipment, and natural settling may cause the soil to shift. An inspection of the sewer can help you discover if the drainage has been affected by a change in slope.

Crushed Pipe

Sewer pipes may become damaged, and pipes that are weakened by roots or age may collapse. When there’s a break in the plumbing line, the water can back up into the house and raw sewage may be dumped into the ground. This problem is an emergency and needs to be addressed immediately.

Clogs in the Line

A sewer scope inspection can identify a simple clog, too. The line may be in good shape, but something was washed down a drain and clogged the system. Sometimes young children flush toys, baby wipes can clog pipes, and grease build-up can also hinder the flow.  A simple plumbing service may be necessary, however, it is good to know that the inspection did not identify a major repair.

A Sewer Scope Inspection Can Save Money

If the plumbing system in a house is having problems, it could be an issue with the main sewer line. This is the line that connects the home to the city service or the septic tank. Instead of paying a plumber to investigate each sink, tub, and toilet, a sewer scope inspection can find the problem quickly.

Elite Inspections and Home Services provide home inspection services, including sewer scope inspections, for customers in the Dayton, Ohio area. Contact us to request an appointment.