4 Smoke Testing Facts

Smoke testing is one of the least costly options used to check up on the health of sewer pipes and related fixtures. The name is somewhat self-explanatory, as the test is performed by blowing smoke into pipes and observing if, and where, it escapes. But what else is there to know?

The Smoke Is Safe

If you’ve ever been to a party or concert where they used a fog machine you already know what to expect. There are no toxic fumes associated with smoke testing, and there is zero risk of fire or explosion. It’s suitable for private properties as well as public and commercial spaces.

Testing Is Quick

The size of the area being tested determines the exact time frame, but there are no complicated water system maintenance products or excavation efforts to manage. Since the smoke is non-toxic, there is no clean-up. Whether testing takes 30 minutes or an hour, you won’t be able to tell the difference as there is no need to restrict access to the streets where testing is taking place.

Prep Is Minimal

Before smoke testing takes place in your neighborhood, you should flush toilets and pour a couple of liters of water down drains that aren’t frequently used. Having full drain traps should be enough to prevent smoke from coming up your pipes. If it smoke still comes up, it won’t harm you, your pets or your home.

There’s No Inconvenience

The people performing the test will never venture onto private property unless they detect a problem that concerns a home directly. They will most likely post notices in advance about the testing to prevent unnecessary calls to emergency services, but communication will otherwise be minimal or nonexistent. The smoke will not obstruct the pipes, meaning that you will not have to restrict water usage during testing. 

Not only will you be safe, but you can also go about your day unhindered. This makes smoke testing one of the best diagnostic methods for sewers.