sewer lateral inspection, home inspection bay area, home inspection san diego

HomeGuard Incorporated
Sewer Lateral Inspection and Repairs

See Sewer Lateral City Requirements

Why is it important to have your sewer lateral pipe inspected?

A sewer lateral is an underground pipe that carries the wastewater from your home to the municipal or county sewer line located within the public right away, i.e., a street, alleyway, or public landholding. Typically, the pipe is 4-5 inches in diameter made from clay, cast iron, or plastic with an access point called a cleanout, visible above ground and adjacent to the building. In most cases, the homeowner is held responsible for the maintenance and repair of the sewer lateral, including portions within the public right of way, with a few cities or counties assuming responsibility at the property line.

Most sewer laterals were installed when the house was built, and most still have their original pipe unless prior repairs were made. Homes built in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s all have pipes made from no longer used materials. As these materials age, they corrode, shift, and crack, making them vulnerable to tree roots and groundwater invading. These defects can result in wastewater seeping into the adjacent soil or overflows within the public sewage system (added groundwater coming in from broken, cracked pipes could lead to overflowing sewers).

To combat the aging infrastructure, many cities and counties require homeowners to have a Sewer Lateral Video Inspection done prior to selling their property. Defects must be repaired or the sewer lateral replaced before the city or county will certify it.

Sewer lateral pipes are located entirely underground. Therefore, a prospective homebuyer would not know of any potential issues with the lateral until it becomes a costly, messy problem. In areas that do not require the seller to obtain certification, we recommend having the sewer lateral inspected before purchasing.

How is it different by County and City?

Cities and counties have their own ordinances; this varies, with some having zero inspection requirements and others requiring inspection along with pressure testing. Regardless, if the home is in a city or county requiring certification, we will submit the essential documents, including any necessary forms, and present the inspection video to complete this.

What is included in the report?

Our report informs the customer of the sewer lateral’s current condition and provides repair or replace recommendations. A pipe with zero defects and is suitably functioning will pass, while those with obstructions that hinder regular operation will fail. If it fails, HomeGuard will provide a bid to repair the defects noted or, if necessary, a complete replacement. The report will detail the flaws with pictures and a narrated video inspection available for viewing and download.

  • A video link of the HomeGuard Sewer Lateral Inspection will be included in the report and available to view and download for up to 90 days after inspection.

What should our customers expect?

Customers will receive a sewer lateral report with pictures and video that details the visible defects in the sewer lateral and whether it meets the city or county certification standard. When it does not meet the standard, HomeGuard will provide a quote to repair or replace the damage so it can be certified as free of defects.

  • The Sewer Lateral Inspection price is $295.00.
  • A detached guest house will be an additional charge of $100.00 for the additional Sewer Lateral Inspection.
  • HomeGuard will perform a Sewer Lateral Inspection on single-family homes, multi-family, and duets (HomeGuard cannot perform a sewer lateral inspection on a condo or townhome).
  • The Sewer Lateral Inspection will take approximately 1-hour.
  • Sewer Lateral Inspectors are NASSCO Certified.
  • HomeGuard approved subcontractors will be doing the repairs.
  • All sewer lateral repairs or replacements have a 1-year warranty.


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