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Sewer Line Video Inspection

Do you need to know what’s going on in your sewer line? Call us at The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain today for a sewer camera inspection in Alexandria or Fredericksburg. Sewer video inspections are great when you suspect a sewer problem but you’re not sure where it is or what is causing it. They are also a good idea if you are purchasing property. The inspection allows you to see what is going on in the sewer line so you can make wise decisions about whether or not to buy. 

Our Inspection Process

Give us a call and let us know that you need a sewer video inspection. We’ll send out a sewer expert to get you an insider’s look at what is going on in your sewer line. Your expert will start by locating your sewer access hatch inside your home. This is usually in the basement, in the utility closet, or outside. If you don’t know where it is, don’t worry, our experts can find them without any problems!

Once we’ve found the access hatch, we’ll send a video camera on a flexible cable down through your sewer line. This gives us a complete view of what is going on in your sewer. It allows us to see 360 degrees so we can spot any clogs, dirty pipes, cracks, breaks, and more.

The camera also records as it goes, and it contains a transmitter that can be picked up from the surface. If we find problems in the sewer line, we can pinpoint exactly where they are from aboveground. This allows us to plan sewer repairs with more precision.

When we’re done, we’ll give you a recording of your sewer video inspection. You can use this to show plumbers where they need to work or to try to get the current owners of the property to fix the problem. It’s also good just to keep it for future documentation. We can always work with you to fix your sewer line, too!

Schedule Your Inspection

Give The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain a call to schedule your sewer camera inspection today. We’ll get straight to work and let you know what we find. If you want to, you can even watch along on the screen that accompanies the camera. We want you to know exactly what is going on down there in your sewer!

Schedule your sewer line video inspection with an expert from The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain today! We hope to meet you soon!

What You Need to Know About Plumbing Emergencies

Plumbing problems can happen at any time of the day or night, which is why we have plumbers standing by 24/7/365 at The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain Services. However, many homeowners we’ve talked to hesitate to call in an emergency plumber because they aren’t sure what constitutes a plumbing emergency. Here’s what you need to know in case you ever need to make that decision. 

What is a Plumbing Emergency?

A plumbing emergency occurs whenever:

  • There’s a flood risk.
  • The sewer is backed up.
  • You might have a burst pipe.
  • There’s no water.

When Should I Call an Emergency Plumber?

If you are suffering from any of the issues above, you should call an emergency plumber if:

  • You are responsible for fixing the problem. If the issue is with the city water supply or you have a landlord, then you need to contact them instead.
  • You don’t feel like you can fix the problem yourself. Some homeowners have fairly extensive knowledge of plumbing issues and may be able to repair things or stabilize them until regular business hours. 

What Can I Do in a Plumbing Emergency?

If you’re in a plumbing emergency, don’t panic! It’s easy to say that but much harder to keep anxiety under control when you’re facing water shooting everywhere or sewage flowing into your house. However, calmness will help you find the best solution to the problem.

If there’s a burst pipe or water is spraying from somewhere, turn off the main water valve to your home. This is usually located in or near your furnace and water heater, but it may be in your basement, in your garage, or near an outdoor faucet. Turn the knob or lever all the way to the right to stop the flow of fresh water into your home. Just remember not to use any water until the problem is fixed and the valve has been opened again. 

If you can assess the problem, do so. However, do not risk yourself or your family while you’re doing it. Remember that sewage can contain bacteria and other organisms that can make you very sick!

The best course of action is to call a plumber from The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain Services right away. We’ll get someone to your home fast to find the problem and repair it. 

Don’t let a plumbing emergency wait! Call us ASAP to get your home fixed fast – we provide emergency plumbing services to our whole service area!

Hydro Jetting vs. Drain Cleaning

Cleaning out your main sewer line may not be a task you love to take on, but it is one that will help keep your home running the way you need it to for many years. There are two ways to clean most drains: hydro jetting and traditional drain cleaning, or snaking

We usually recommend hydro jetting, except in some specific circumstances. Here’s what you need to know about hydro jetting vs. snaking to make the best decision for your home. 

Hydro Jetting

Jetting your drain lines involves shooting a highly pressurized stream of water down through your lines. It removes all sorts of debris from the edges of your pipes and can even break up stubborn clogs. 

The Pros of Hydro Jetting

Sewer line jetting is maximally effective. It removes everything that is on the inside of your pipe, leaving it looking brand new.

Hydro jetting is also versatile. It can clean commercial lines, residential lines, and more. It can also remove all sorts of clogs, from grease buildup to scale to tree roots in your lines 

The Cons of Hydro Jetting

The only downside of jetting your drain lines is that it can damage some pipes. Older pipes or pipes that are already damaged might suffer from having such highly pressurized water pumped through them. This danger is mitigated, though, when you have your pipes inspected before they are jetted. At The Pipe Doctor, we always do this, to keep your lines safe!

Drain Cleaning

Traditional drain cleaning involves sending a flexible tube down your line. It has a point on the end that allows it to bore a hole through whatever is clogging your line. 

The Pros of Drain Cleaning

Snaking has been used effectively for many years. It is a tried-and-true method of drain cleaning. 

Traditional drain cleaning won’t damage fragile pipes. It is a much gentler process than hydro jetting and there’s no risk that it will hurt pipes. 

The Cons of Drain Cleaning

Snaking only clears a path through your pipe that is as wide as the cable. While jetting drain lines clears out the whole pipe, snaking only clears a path through the pipe. This may be enough to get your sewer flowing again for a while, but you will need to clear the pipe again much sooner than you would with hydro jetting. 

If you need to have your sewer line assessed for cleaning, contact us at The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain Cleaning today. We’ll inspect your line, then determine the best way to clean it out. Whether you need hydro jetting or snaking, we’ll get that line cleared out ASAP. 

Call to make your appointment with one of our sewer experts today! 

Fixing a Clogged Drain When Drano isn’t Enough

Your drain is clogged, so you did what many homeowners do: you reached for the Drano. Most of the time, that will solve your problem. However, when Drano won’t go down the drain, you need to find another option to remove your stubborn clog. You can call the experienced plumbers at The Pipe Doctor for drain cleaning in Bergen County, NJ and the surrounding areas, or you can try a couple of other options first. 

No matter what you try, remember that we are here for you when you need us. If you still can’t get your drain cleared out or you don’t want to mess with it, our experienced plumbers will tackle the job for you. 

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Plunge it Out

When Drano won’t go down the drain, grab a plunger instead. Many people think that these are only good for toilets. However, they can create suction that can dislodge your clog. Make sure that you get a plunger that can seal all the way around your drain. This gives it optimal effectiveness and gives you the best possible chance of removing that clog. 

Household Remedies

If your drain drains at all, even if it’s very slow, mix equal parts baking soda and vinegar and let it sit in your drain. Make sure all of the standing water has gone down before you try this. Use ½-1 cup of baking soda and 1 cup of vinegar, plus a bit of water if you want to dilute things a little bit more. Pour it down the drain and let it sit for 30-60 minutes. Sometimes, this mixture can break up clogs that even Drano can’t touch!

Plumbing Snakes

You can rent a plumbing snake at your local hardware store. This is usually a claw, hook, or pointed end on a long, flexible cable. You’ll thread the snake down into your drain, then use it to break up or pull out the clog. When Drano won’t go down your drain, sometimes this can move the clog instead.

Bergen County’s Drain Cleaning Specialists

If you’re not comfortable using a plumbing snake on your own, we don’t blame you. It’s fairly easy to get them stuck in the drain, causing even more damage and more extensive repairs or plumbing replacement. If this is your fear, call in the professionals at The Pipe Doctor for drain cleaning in Bergen County, NJ. We’ll use high-quality snake in an expert plumber’s hands to get rid of your clog once and for all. If the clog is so deep that we are unable to reach it with the plumbing snake, our plumbers are trained and equipped with advanced technology to handle even the most stubborn of clogs. The experts at The Pipe Doctor Plumbing & Drain will handle your Bergen County drain cleaning quickly and effectively, so you can get back to your life soon. Give us a call today!

Summer Plumbing Tips

Summer is just around the corner. It’s the time of year where we see a lot of plumbing repairs, drain cleaning calls, and well pump repair requests in NoVA. Here’s how to make sure your plumbing systems stays in top shape this summer.

Take Care of Your Washing Machine

Most people wash more clothes in the summer than they do in the winter. Give your washing machine a break between loads so it’s less likely to overheat. Make sure it’s away from the wall and that the hoses running to and from it are not twisted or kinked. Install stainless steel hoses for a smaller chance of cracking and leaking. If you see any problems, get them fixed before you try to use the machine again!

Keep an Eye on Your Sprinklers

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When you turn on your sprinkler system, watch it run the first time through. Make sure that all of your sprinkler heads are aimed at your lawn and not at the driveway or sidewalk. Check for wet spots, which can indicate leaky pipes. If anything needs repair or replacement, call in the experts to get the job done right the first time!

Check Your Sewer

Summer storms can cause major backups in sewers that have leaks, that don’t have the proper drains installed, or that are already partially clogged. It’s a good idea to get a sewer line camera inspection done now and then, just to make sure that yours is running the way it is supposed to. This is not invasive and quick, and then you’ll know how your sewer is doing.

If you need any help with your plumbing systems in Alexandria, VA, Fredericksburg, VA or the surrounding areas this summer, call us at The Pipe Doctor! Our team of professional plumbers are certified experts available 24/7 plumbing emergencies. Contact us today for professional help keeping your plumbing systems running like they should.

Common Water Heater Problems and How to Fix Them

Are you having problems with your water heater, or think you may need your water heater replaced? Contact us at The Pipe Doctor today to get your hot water back on and flowing normally again soon. Here’s what you need to know about some common water heater problems so you can get things fixed fast!

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No Hot Water

This is one of the top water heater problems. The issue may be different depending on the type of water heater you have. No matter what, though, it will likely take a professional to properly diagnose and repair these problems.

Not Enough Hot Water

This can be caused by a number of issues, including:

  • Your tank is too small
  • Your temperature is turned down too low
  • If you’re having tankless water heater problems, your heater may not be powerful enough

You can try turning the temp up on your own. If that doesn’t help, you’ll likely need to call for professional help.

The Water isn’t The Right Temperature

Do you have plenty of hot water but it’s either too hot or too cold? Try changing the temperature on the heater itself. If this doesn’t take care of it, it’s likely that your hot water heater problems stem from a faulty temperature-pressure valve, which requires the services of a pro to fix.

The Water Takes Too Long to Reheat

This common water heater problem can be caused by a number of different issues. You can check to see if there is sediment buildup in your tank and try to flush it. If that doesn’t work, bring in a professional to do further testing.

The Water Tank Leaks

If your tank leaks are actually caused by pipes that you can access, tighten them and see if that stops the problem. If your hot water heater problems come from the tank itself, though, get it replaced ASAP. It could cause catastrophic water damage if you let it go!

The Water Heater Makes Unusual Sounds

If your water heater problems include unusual sounds coming from the heater itself, try draining it and descaling it. If that doesn’t help, call and ask for professional help.

Water is Rusty

Rusty water indicates corrosion inside your tank. However, you may be able to drain the tank and replace the anode rod to take care of the problem. Try this before you call us about your hot water heater problems.

Water is Smelly

Smelly water can indicate a bacterial infection in your tank. Drain it, fill it with water and hydrogen peroxide, let it sit for three hours, then drain it again and let it refill. If the water still smells, you may need a stronger treatment or a new tank. Either way, bring in professional help.

Contact The Pipe Doctor for Water Heater Services in NoVA or Fredericksburg

Stop wondering who to call for water heater repair and contact us at The Pipe Doctor whenever you have hot water problems in NoVA or Fredericksburg, VA or the surrounding areas. We’ll get to you fast and get everything fixed ASAP so you can use your hot water normally again soon.

What is Cured in Place Piping and Is It Right for You?

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Are you looking at replacing part of your sewer line and you’re not sure how to get the results you need? Has your plumber recommended CIPP or cured in place pipe and you’re not sure what that means? Here’s what you need to know to decide if a cured in place pipe liner is the best way to solve your sewer problems.

What is Cured in Place Pipe?

A cured in place pipe liner is a flexible, robust pipe liner that can be pulled into place, then cured to the edges of existing pipelines. It hardens, forming a new lining for a broken or a damaged section of pipe.

Because CIPP can be pulled into place through existing pipe lines, these sewer repairs require little to no digging. Instead, they are performed using technology and your current sewer access points.

How Do You Install Cured in Place Pipe?

If you’re interested in cured in place pipe, we’ll start by sending a camera down your sewer line. This gives us an accurate picture of what is going on in the line and allows us to be sure that a cured in place pipe liner is a good solution.

If we can fix your pipe with a CIPP solution, we’ll let you know, then bring in the equipment we need. We’ll find the best place to access your sewer line and get to work. Our team will coat the pipe liner with the resin that will hold it in place, position it properly, then make sure it cures according to manufacturer specifications.

We’ll test your new pipe before we leave to make sure that we solved your problem and that you shouldn’t have any more issues with your pipeline. We can even send a camera down the line again, if there are any questions about how well the pipe is working or whether it solved your sewer problem.

Is Cured in Place Pipe the Solution You Need?

If you’ve just found out that you need sewer repair, don’t panic! Call us at The Pipe Doctor and schedule an appointment with one of our skilled sewer experts for cured in pipe service in Alexandria. We’ll come out, evaluate the line, and let you know what we find. If cured in place pipe is the solution you need, we’ll get your sewer fixed ASAP. Rely on our team of skilled experts to repair your sewer today!



How Long Should a Water Heater Last?

How Long Should a Water Heater Last?

We talk to a lot of homeowners who aren’t sure how long their water heater should last. Most people want to be responsible and replace the heater when it needs it, but they aren’t sure when that is.

How long should a water heater last

While different water heaters have different lifespans, most last somewhere between 6 and 13 years. In fact, we tell people that anything over 10 years is amazing and they really can’t expect more than that.

The exact lifespan of your water heater depends on the quality of water running through it, how often you perform or call for water heater maintenance, and whether you call for water heater repair right away when you need it. If you’re not sure how old your water heater is or it’s current condition, our experts can take a look at it and let you know.

How Do I Know if I Need a Water Heater Replacement?

If your water heater is broken, the first thing to do is to call for a water heater repair. If you need a water heater replacement instead, our team will let you know. You can also look for the following signs, which may indicate that you need a new water heater.

  • Your hot water is an unusual color. If it looks like it is tinted yellow, orange, or even red, there’s a good chance your water heater has rust inside of it that is getting into your water supply. The best way to deal with this is usually to get a new water heater.
  • Your water heater makes popping or gurgling sounds. This often indicates that sediment has built up inside the heater and is impeding the flow of water through or out from the appliance. Sediment is hard to remove when it gets this bad and you may need to replace the entire heater.
  • Water is pooling around the bottom of the heater. Call us right away because a water heater leak can cause catastrophic damage!

At The Pipe Doctor, we replace water heaters all the time and we would love to help you get the best new heater for your home. Contact us today and we’ll match you with a water heater replacement that should work well for you for many years. We’ll make sure it comes from a reliable manufacturer, then get it installed and test it for you, too. If you make your appointment today, you’ll have a new water heater soon!

How to Descale Your Drain Pipes

How to Descale Your Drain Pipes

Scale refers to the layer of minerals and other substances that can build up on the insides of your pipes. The most common mineral in scale is calcium, though others can be present, too, depending on the mineral composition of your water.

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If you notice that the amount of water coming out of your pipes is less than it used to be, it’s time to descale your plumbing pipes. It is particularly important to descale cast iron pipes, because of how the iron can interact with these minerals.

You can call us at The Pipe Doctor and ask about pipe descaling, or you can tackle the job yourself. If you choose the latter, here’s what you need to know.

Choose Your Drain Cleaner

You can choose between chemical drain cleaners, like Drano, or natural drain cleaners, like a combination of vinegar and baking soda. If you are on a well, you will need to use natural cleaners because they can find their way into your drinking water.

Natural drain cleaners will take longer to work but you may not need gloves and other safety gear when handling them. Chemical cleaners can also be bad for plastic or PVC pipes, as they can weaken the pipe as they work. Call our experts if you need advice on what to use.

Steps to Descale Plumbing Pipes

Once you know what you want to use to descale your plumbing pipes, here are the steps you should follow to get the job done.

  1. Find several large pots, buckets, or jugs and fill them with water. You should have at least one for every drain you want to clean.
  2. Turn off the main water valve for your home.
  3. Turn off your hot water heater.
  4. Turn on all of your faucets and flush your toilets. This empties any water left in your pipes. Close the taps when you are finished with this step.
  5. Pour your chosen drain cleaner into your pipes and wait. A chemical cleaner will tell you in the instructions how long to wait. You may need to wait several hours for a natural cleaner to finish working.
  6. Boil all of the water. Make sure to use stove- or microwave-safe containers.
  7. Pour the boiling water down your drains. You should pour at least one large container of water down each drain.
  8. Turn your water and your hot water heater back on.
  9. Open all of your faucets as much as possible. All of the mineral deposits that came loose during your pipe descaling process should flow out of them. Turn them off when you don’t see anything else coming out of your pipes.

If this doesn’t descale your plumbing pipes, call us at The Pipe Doctor. We’ll come out, find the problem, and get your plumbing working again soon!



Hydro jetting sewer cleaning in Alexandria

There is a new method of combatting deep-rooted plumbing problems called hydro-jetting. This process is more intensive than using a plunger or a plumbing snake, and is usually used when there is a complex clog located within your line. The experts on staff at Pipe Doctor offer hydro-jet drain cleaning for our customers who are having serious issues with their septic system. To find out if hydro-jetting could solve the problems you are experiencing at your property, read on to learn more about this service.


The process involves using powerful hydro-jet drain cleaning equipment to blast away any obstacles or blockages that are creating issues inside your plumbing pipes. It uses high pressure jetting, breaking up clogs and washing away any scale or sediment that has built up on the interior walls. When you hire a professional plumber like ours to do hydro-jetting, in no time at all you end up with completely cleared out pipes.


If you are dealing with a particularly tricky plumbing problem, it may be the best possible option to get it taken care of. Sometimes measures such as plunging or trying to snake the drain cannot reach the extent of the issue, and other methods like chemical drain cleaner are dangerous and bad for the piping. Hydro-jetting is a safe, convenient way to get any type of plumbing issue handled. THE BENEFITS OF HYDRO-JETTING

  • It works on the toughest of clogs – Using the high pressure jetting is a great way to combat any kind of clog, from food and waste to tree roots and trash.
  • It is completely safe – Unlike some of the chemicals that are used for drain cleaning, hydro-jet drain cleaner is totally safe for your pipes, because it is just using water.
  • It’s a fast solution – With the powerful streams of water, hydro-jetting is a great way to quickly take care of even the most stubborn plumbing problems.
  • It is cost-effective – For being a relatively new and modern method of plumbing repairs, hydro-jet drain cleaning is affordable and convenient. Talk with our staff to learn more about pricing!

Call The Pipe Doctor for Hydro Jetting in the Alexandria & Fredericksburg areas!

More and more of our customers are realizing what a convenient technique hydro-jetting is. If you are interested in having hydro jetting in Alexandria or Fredericksburg, the Pipe Doctor staff can come out to your property and assess the situation to see if you are a good candidate. Reach out to The Pipe Doctor today for more details!

Have an Emergency? Call The Pipe Doctor.


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