You may have heard of endoscopes before, but the reason you might be familiar with them is that they are often used to inspect a human being’s insides for medical diagnostic purposes.
However, endoscopes have many other uses related to inspection, not just for humans. They can be used to inspect the interiors of walls and pipes. Therefore, endoscopes can come in quite handy when it comes to finding clogs or problems with your plumbing.
All you have to do is feed the camera probe into the opening and keep feeding it through until you find the problem. Keep in mind that when it comes to borescope vs. endoscope, they are similar tools, but not the same; endoscopes are often more delicate.
If you plan to use one to inspect your plumbing to find a clog or general maintenance purposes, you need to know how to use it and solve the underlying issue.
Using An Endoscope To Find The Issue
An endoscope itself cannot be used to clear a clog in a pipe. These tools are designed exclusively for inspection purposes. The probe – the cable with the camera mounted in the front of it – is quite delicate.
If you find a clog with it, you cannot punch the probe through the clog, as this will most likely result in damage to the camera or the probe cable.
However, you can use it to find the clog, so you can then take the appropriate steps to solve the problem. Let’s go through some essential tips and usage procedures for using that endoscope.
First, make sure that the endoscope has a waterproof camera and probe. You can’t stick an endoscope probe into plumbing if it is not waterproof – it will break.
Also, make sure that the endoscope probe is long enough to reach the suspected location where there is an issue. Borescopes often have much longer cables and are therefore ideal for long-distance inspection.
Make sure the light on your endoscope is working, as you will need to see what is going on in those dark pipes.
Now you can turn on your endoscope and start feeding the probe into the pipe; slowly feed the probe through while continually keeping an eye on the video display, so you can see where you are going and eventually see the problem. Once you locate the clog or excess deposits, you can then move onto the cleaning stage.
How To Clear Clogged Pipes
Depending on the blockage or buildup’s severity, you may need to resort to several methods to remedy the situation. Let’s talk about some of the possible solutions for clearing out those clogged pipes.
If the clog is relatively small and minor, one solution is to boil some water and pour it down the pipe. This works best for small drains, sinks, and bathtubs because boiling water can flow directly to the clog and hopefully loosen it up thanks to the heat. That said, this won’t work for a clogged toilet because the cold water present in the pipes and the toilet bowl will cool the boiling water to the point where it is rendered ineffective.
If boiling water doesn’t work, you can use a chemical drain cleaner to solve the problem. That said, be aware that most drain cleaning chemicals cannot be used on toilets, as many may damage the pipes or even cause them to explode. However, for a clogged sink, tub, or floor drain, drain cleaner could do the trick.
If the issue is with your toilet, one of the best solutions, besides a toilet plunger, is to use a toilet snake. These are special tools that are used to unclog toilets. They feature a long, thick, and sturdy cable combined with a twisted coil at the front. On the handle, you use a crank to spin that coil, which should loosen up any debris clogging the toilet.
High-Pressure Water Jet
Another option is to use a high-pressure water jet. These tools consist of a small hose that screws into your faucet, with a unique interior design that produces a lot of pressure.
You feed the high-pressure hose through the pipe until you reach the clog. Then, turn on the tap and blast water through the clog. If this does not work, then your only option may be to open up your walls and the pipes to manually remove the debris, and if this fails, your only real option is to call a plumber.
Endoscopes are ingenious solutions for finding clogs in your pipes, and once you find them, you can then use any one of the remedies that we have suggested to get rid of the debris, to allow those pipes to flow freely once again.