Some business owners prey upon the elderly and widowed. There are companies that train their employees on how to spot a susceptible candidate. They are taught to ask questions like, “Is your husband at home?” or “Are you divorced?” When they get the answer they are looking for they descend upon their prey.
Employees of dishonest company owners are taught techniques to convince homeowners that they have worse problems than they actually have. Some will travel in pairs and while one is upstairs getting information about the customer the other is down stairs spreading dirt in specific spots that they say indicate the sewer pipe is broken and forcing the dirt up through the concrete.
Others carry bags of rocks with them and put them in the house traps or cleanouts in the house so they are assured future stoppages in the line. After the second or third stoppage they show the homeowner the rocks they “removed” from their pipe and tell them the pipe must be damaged and needs to be jetted and video inspected.
Video cameras can be useful in locating buried septic systems or inspecting the condition of buried pipes to determine proper maintenance schedules or the extent of necessary repairs. When the corrupt worker takes control of the camera he may play a pre-taped inspection of a pipe in very bad condition and tell you it is your pipe.
Have the technician video tape something distinguishable in your house by your sewer cleanout to prove the camera is recording before he begins. High pressure sewer jets are great at removing grease buildups or sand in the line but are too often sold to every customer with a costly price tag and told it is necessary. Usually a good snaking with an electric rotating cable will do the job just as well.
Another popular product sewer cleaners are selling these days are liners. The sales team pitches that the best thing about these units are that you don’t disturb landscaping. This is true but you also don’t get a new pipe and landscaping usually will be back to its original condition in less than a year.
Remember to check the background of your sewer cleaner with organizations like the Better Business Bureau. If someone is using fear of costly sewer overflow damage or high pressure sales techniques, take a step back and get a second opinion.