I own a property that has a cast iron sewer line that runs under the
basement floor, and I want to be able to mark out and locate where it runs
under the basement floor. I know that I could hire a company to come out
and do that, but I am wondering if there are any fairly cheap, creative, and
interesting/fun ways for me to try to locate the line myself.
For example, is there some kind of small signal generator that I could
attach to a sewer line snake and detect the signal from above with some type
of detector? -- maybe something that Radio Shack or some electronics store
Or, are there relatively inexpensive underground pipe-locating devices that
I could rent somewhere and do the job?
Would a metal detector be able to detect a cast iron pipe under a concrete
floor (assuming that the pipe is not down very far below the floor?
Thanks, but I am not sure how a "magnetic compass" would work.
I am also not sure where I would rent whatever a regular plumbers device is.
That may work. I wonder if anyone here has ever tried that since I have no
experience with using any metal detectors. Maybe I'll try searching to see
if the are metal detector websites and/or forums where I can get more info
on how well a metal detector may work for this.
A metal snake should show up with a metal detector, use steel not
stainless. I tried to see if my pipe bends anywhere by using a camera.
After a lot of fooling around, I gave up looking at the whole pipe. I had
problems with my feed method and camera position. Saw hairs, webs, a worm,
and a creapy crawler. I was also looking for roots, but didn't see any as
far as I got.
On 1/11/2012 6:51 PM, hr(bob) email@example.com wrote:
A small RF transmitter attached to a fish tape could work. I've used
small pocket AM/FM radios set on AM to find live wires in walls before.
A small AM transmitter that put out a warbling signal could be used.
Might be a fun little project? ^_^
I had a problem with my sewer line where the line had to be located
under a concrete garage floor. A plumber used a piece of wood placed
between his ear and floor to help amplify the sound. He then had his
partner tap in various places on the floor and also run some water down a
drain. Apparently, between those two tests, he was able to locate the pipe
confidently but not perfectly. He also ran a snake down a clearout and
measured how much was being fed as well as detecting any noise. I suspect
you can use a stethoscope instead of a piece of wood.
If it's not too deep, a metal detector.
The pipe locator guys inject a signal on the pipe
and detect it from above.
I built a crude one.
used a function generator at 6.5kHz to inject a signal between
the pipe and ground. That just happened to be the peak sensitivity
of the receiver.
Sensed it with a coil wound on a vertical ferrite stick.
Plugged that into the microphone input of a computer.
Used a sound card scope to detect it.
I used a pda and a spectrum analysis program, but any
old computer should work.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.