Plumbing has dramatically evolved over the years and has certainly made serious advancements to their drain cleaning practices. Two of the most commonly used tools used for clearing drains are water jetters and traditional cable machines, but which one is best or when should each type be used? Here are some of the pros and cons when comparing water jetters vs. cable machines.
If cutting up tree roots or retrieving objects are your goals, traditional cable machines do a great job. Use a larger diameter cable that has the torque to cut tree roots. To retrieve foreign objects such as rags, children’s toys, broken cables, etc., begin by choosing the size of your drainline to find the right cable machine for the job. Debris blockages from hair, soap and scale in smaller lines to tree roots, clippings and gravel in larger drainlines will usually always require a cable machine. However, when it comes to grease clogs, cables have a difficult time and a stronger tool may be needed.
Water jetters are ideal for clearing grease-choked lines, as well as flushing sand from bellied lines and melting ice clogs. These jets use a stream of high-pressure water that cuts the grease off the walls of the pipe and flushes it through. The thrust of the nozzle drives the hose down the line for wall-to-wall cleaning action.
It is recommended to use a gas-powered jet instead of electric jets which have the potential to pop breakers. You get twice the pressure and flow rate with gas than electric jets and it gives you the power to cut through tough blockages and pull the hose down longer lines. Gas jets can also be used in buildings and confined spaces where exhaust fumes could be hazardous while the jets stay safely outside.
Choosing the Right Tool
Should you decide to handle the job yourself and are comparing water jetters vs. cable machines, choosing the correct option will reduce your maintenance expenses from using the wrong tool at the wrong time, make your job easier, and save you more money.
However, most people are better off handing over the job to professionals. Giving the right information to your local plumbing company will help them choose the correct tool for your particular clog. Professional plumbers will be able to choose the right tool for the job and will be able to clear the line faster.
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