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How to Unblock a Sewer with Sewer Jetting Trucks

The importance of employing appropriate sewer cleaning practices, whether in your home, factory or city cannot become undermined. A well maintained sewer goes a long way in improving health and cleanliness.

Sewer Jetting Truck from Vac-Con

Sewer Jetting Truck from Vac-Con®

There are various types of material that can clog the sewer. These include tree roots, sludge, minerals, dirt, grease, and sand.


The process of unclogging the sewer is known as sewer jetting. Specialized vehicles used to clean sewers are known as sewer cleaning trucks. A typical sewer cleaning truck should be able to remove sand, stones, bottles, trash, grease, sludge, roots and other debris from sanitary sewers and storm drain pipes, manholes, inlets and vaults.

The two main components in sewer jetting are water pressure and the volume of water jet. Depending on the size and material of the pipe that needs to become cleaned, you need to select the water pressure and volume of water. A general rule of thumb is that the softer the material that the sewer lines become made of, a lesser pressure is required. Thus, an average sewer with a diameter of 4 to 12 inches which has tree roots and grease in it would require a high water pressure and a medium volume unit. Likewise, a sewer clogged with sand needs a flow of 50 to 60 gallons per minute and about 1500 psi. This will ensure that the water erodes the sand back to the catch basin, thus emulating the process of a river eroding sand on its bank. Further, remember to use the right type of nozzle. If the high pressure created by the system is not directed effectively at the nozzle end, then it would certainly defeat the purpose.

Water jetters are available on trucks or trailers, and so are vacuum cleaners. Alternatively, you can purchase a combination sewer cleaning machine. This type of cleaning truck has both – a sewer jet unit and a vacuum cleaning unit.

In situations when jet-cleaning becomes required in remote areas, it is important to carry as much water as possible so that travel time can become minimized. Likewise, on your return journey, the truck should be capable of carrying large amounts of debris and minimal amount of water. Thus choose one which will allow the debris to settle in front with all the extra water pushed to the rear. This way, the water can become discharged easily through a drain. Thus, in such situations a combination sewer cleaning machine is more useful.

Although sewer jetting it is an unpleasant job, sewer line cleaning is a necessary evil that any city, factory or community must undertake in order to maintain adequate sanitary conditions.

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This post was written by Vac-Con