A Property Owner's Guide to Inspecting Your Sewer Line

Published October 14th, 2021 by Rose Building Contractors, Inc.

After conducting months of asking around and online research, you may have finally found the perfect rental property. The home may be situated in the perfect neighborhood, and the home may have all the features you need and may be well within your budget. 

You may have also hired a home inspector who passed the property with a clean bill of health. You then quickly make a payment and find tenants for the rental property. Now imagine that several problems begin to arise four months down the road. 

Maybe your tenants cannot flush their toilets or have a sink that doesn’t want to drain. This is when an inspection will help the plumber find and diagnose the problem in your rental property’s sewer line. This is one horror story that is faced by several landlords and tenants alike.

What is Sewer Inspection?

As the name suggests, this kind of inspection will show you the condition of your rental property’s sewer line. In previous years, sewer line inspections used to involve digging up large areas to check which sections were experiencing the most problems. 

In contrast, nowadays, inspectors are used to specialized and flexible borescope cameras they can use to see what may be going on inside sewers. This is done by inserting cameras into your property’s drain pipes to inspect sewer lines as well as other underground pipes to check for flaws, imperfections, as well as other serious problems. 

The procedure of sewer line inspection typically takes just one hour or less. Afterwards, inspectors will then present reports that highlight the condition of the sewer line. Sewer line inspections are recommended for homes that are about 20 years old or more. 

The following are just a few common problems that sewer line inspection will help solve:

  1. Offset pipes
  2. Low belly areas 
  3. Tree roots
  4. Grease buildup
  5. Cracking
  6. Pipe collapse

Repair Steps For Sewer Lines

  1. Estimate the cost of repairs
  2. Determine the responsibility of the inspector and civic jurisdiction
  3. Negotiate the costs of repairs
  4. Watch them make repairs and don’t DIY


Most rental property owners are totally aware of the importance of house inspections are before they invest in property. Home inspectors will generally look through things like the overall framing, roofs, plumbing systems, and electrical systems. 

Inspection reports will be able to highlight all the potential and existing problems that need to be addressed. However, there are many inspectors that miss the sewer lines, which  could eventually turn out to be quite a critical and costly mistake. Getting sewer line inspections will help you in avoiding a host of catastrophic problems down the road. 

If you are investing in an older home, you will have to consider adding a complete sewer cleanout in your home’s plumbing system. The cost of cleaning sewers could vary based on the work that is involved in accessing your rental property’s sewer line. In general, sewer cleaning services by a vetted professional may cost you anywhere between $1850 and $3500. 

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, the tips above will help you sustain your property’s value, keeping tenants happy for a long time. This will also help you keep the property in good shape and grow your business’s profitability as well as the property’s value. 

Whether you’re taking care of things proactively or preparing the property for new tenants, you can always delegate these tasks to your property manager or hire the right professionals to carry out the task. With professionals taking care of these things, you’ll be responsible for offering your potential tenants more affordability, more personalization, and authenticity as opposed to worrying about your safety. 

If you haven’t hired a property manager already, click here to learn more about our services and how an experienced property manager can share some of your burdens.

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