GPRS Video Pipe Inspection Services Explained

GPRS Video Pipe Inspection Services Explained

A worker prepares a lateral launch rover in the back of a truck.
GPRS Video Pipe Inspection services are a comprehensive solution for sewer inspections.

Our country’s wastewater infrastructure received a D+ in the American Society of Civil Engineers’ 2021 Report Card.

In their analysis, the ASCE found that the average sewer line in the U.S. is 45 years old and at 81% capacity.

This aged, overworked system requires constant attention to keep it operating.

GPRS Video Pipe Inspection (CCTV) is a comprehensive service for sewer inspections. Utilizing industry-leading sewer camera systems, we prevent problems by inspecting underground sewer and lateral pipelines. Our NASSCO-certified Project Managers can locate clogs, investigate cross bores, find structural faults and damages, and conduct lateral sewer line inspections.

Sewer Lateral Inspection & Mapping

Sewer laterals carry wastewater from homes and businesses to the public sanitary sewer main, where it moves on to wastewater treatment plants.

During a sewer lateral inspection, GPRS Project Managers use remote controlled rovers carrying sewer line cameras, as well as push fed sewer scopes to assess the lateral for cross bores, structural issues, and other defects.

Any issues we find are geolocated and ranked by severity, so you can prioritize which problems to address first.

Mapping your wastewater infrastructure is a vital step in mitigating the risks of defects such as cross bores: inadvertent intersections of underground utilities.

Cross bores are the biggest threat to our underground infrastructure. They most commonly occur when new utilities are accidentally bored through the path of existing utilities through trenchless technologies such as horizontal directional drilling (HDD).

Cross bores are sometimes called ticking time bombs because it’s not a question of if they’ll cause a problem – it’s when. A gas line cross bored through a sewer lateral could prove fatal if not properly mitigated. And when you consider that the Cross Bore Safety Association (CBSA) estimates that there are roughly a million undetected/untreated cross bores riddling the United States’ buried infrastructure, you begin to get a picture of just how real this problem is.

Mapping your sewer laterals is a vital step in preventing new cross bores, because it provides utility companies with a road map of where not to run their lines to keep neighborhoods, communities, and the utilities that they need, safe.

Cross Bore Prevention & Mitigation

To fully mitigate the risk of cross bores, GPRS recommends that municipalities, campuses, and facilities require pre- and post-cross bore inspections any time horizontal directional drilling occurs within their boundaries.

During these inspections, the utility installer hires a NASSCO-certified video sewer inspection company such as GPRS to inspect all pipelines within 20 feet of the directional drilling activity. This should happen both before and after the drilling occurs to ensure that no cross bores were created during the project.

Why Does NASSCO Matter in A Sewer Inspection?

NASSCO is the National Association for Sewer Service Companies. They provide industry-leading training on the most advanced, non-destructive methods to detect and report subsurface anomalies within sewer lines.

All video sewer inspections should be conducted by NASSCO-certified inspectors, such as GPRS Project Managers, to ensure you receive the best possible inspection and most detailed reports to aid in your repair planning.

A worker lowers a sewer inspection rover into an open manhole.
GPRS sewer line video inspections reveal collapsed sewer lateral ducts, unknown blockages in your pipes, and other issues that could lead to service interruptions or worse.

Sewer Inspections

GPRS sewer line video inspections reveal collapsed sewer lateral ducts, unknown blockages in your pipes, and other issues that could lead to service interruptions, or worse.

Our NASSCO-certified Project Managers are equipped with the knowledge and state-of-the-art equipment they need to conduct all forms of sewer inspections.

70,000 sanitary sewer overflows occur annually in the U.S. Over 50% of those overflows can be directly attributed to inflow/infiltration (I/I): the process of groundwater or water from sources other than domestic wastewater entering sanitary sewers.

I/I can cause dilution in sanitary sewers, which decreases the efficiency of treatment and can lead to overflows. Hiring a professional sewer video inspection service like GPRS ensures you have a comprehensive and up-to-date picture of the state of your infrastructure, so you can catch problems before they cause major issues such as I/I.

Sewer Mapping

You can’t maintain infrastructure that you don’t know exists.

GPRS utility locating services are enhanced by our ability to discover, inspect, and map sewer systems using sewer camera systems including robotic crawlers, push cameras, and lateral launch cameras. Using this equipment, our highly trained Project Managers create a comprehensive map of your sewer system that includes hard-to-discover elements like lateral lines.

The rovers and push-fed cameras we use during video pipe inspections are equipped with sondes: instrument probes that allow our NASSCO-certified Project Managers to ascertain the location of underground utilities from an inaccessible location. GPRS uses these sonde-equipped sewer scopes in conjunction with electromagnetic (EM) locators to map sewer systems while we’re inspecting them for faults and other defects.

GPRS’ Mapping & Modeling Team takes things a step further, increasing the level of communication and safety on your project by providing clear and understandable maps and models to help you Intelligently Visualize The Built World® so you can easily share your vision with subcontractors, designers, engineers, and whomever else needs the information.

Manhole Inspections

Manholes are more complex structures than typical pipes. Repairing, rehabilitating, or replacing them is a large expense for utility companies or facility owners.

GPRS Project Managers are equipped to fully document the condition of the sewer manhole, identifying all defects and safety issues to help you minimize sewer leaks and overflows. Our NASSCO-certified inspections and reporting provide you with access to the detailed information needed to formulate a corrective action plan.

The four most essential manhole inspection items to consider when hiring a sewer inspection company are:

  • Manhole Chimney: The manhole chimney is the most critical item to examine during the inspection. It may appear intact during dry weather, only to fail during heavy rains or when groundwater is at its peak. Heavy rains or general deterioration of the manhole chimney can also cause clogs and blockages.
  • Rubber Boot: Rubber boots are installed on the slab during the construction of new manholes to facilitate the installation of sewer pipes. The rubber boot is firmly tightened with bands to create a watertight seal. In some cases, concrete is poured around the tube instead of the boot, and this can potentially cause infiltration, which decreases the efficiency of treatment and can lead to overflows.
  • Correct Stacking: Most municipalities and utilities provide specifications to be followed during installation of new sewer systems. Video pipe inspections offer visual proof that these specifications have been followed, ensuring that the new system will operate properly.
  • Surcharging: When the sewer entrance and exit are submerged, and the pipe is flowing full and under pressure, surcharging can occur and obstruct the sewer during heavy rains. It’s therefore recommended that you have a sewer system inspection conducted after a heavy rain. It is also recommended that your sewer laterals are connected directly to the central system (mainline) rather than to the manhole.

A close-up shot of a lateral launch remote controlled sewer inspection crawler.
GPRS deploys a variety of remote controlled crawlers and push cameras to visualize the inside of buried sewer lines.


When inspecting buried pipes, you have two options: excavation, or CCTV camera inspection.

GPRS deploys robotic crawler CCTV cameras, lateral launch cameras, and push cameras to inspect and document sewer systems, lateral and drains, saving you time and money otherwise spent on exploratory excavation.

We use the following equipment during video pipe inspections:

  • Robotic Crawler with CCTV Camera: These powerful and rugged sewer camera systems are ideal for everything from routine pipe assessments to emergency inspections. The high-definition on-board cameras capture even the finest details inside sewers and pipes ranging in size from 6” to 96” in diameter. After GPRS has completed a video pipe inspection using a robotic crawler, your team will receive the video footage, screenshots, and a detailed NASSCO-certified report with the locations of pipe and sewer conditions and defects, including cracks, infractions, and other imperfections.
  • Push Camera: This smaller, lightweight system is a great tool for situations in which the pipes or sewers being inspected are too small for the robotic crawler CCTV. Push cameras are manually fed into a pipe, and can be easily twisted, turned, and manipulated through the line. GPRS push cameras are equipped with sondes for accurate mapping and real-time video recording, allowing instant diagnosis and easy playback, so you can quickly and easily locate and repair any sewer problems.
  • Lateral Launch: Lateral launch cameras allow GPRS Project Managers to inspect and map the interior conditions of lateral sewer lines and pipes from the mainline. The lateral launch crawls up to 984 ft. into the main line and then launch 147 ft. into lateral lines to locate cross bores, illicit flows, and structural defects. The lateral launch crawler delivers live video and detailed photos of each sewer segment pipe defect geolocated and ranked by severity. The lateral launch camera detects and records damage quickly, so you can repair the problem efficiently.

From skyscrapers to sewer lines, GPRS Intelligently Visualizes The Built World® to keep your projects on time, on budget, and most importantly, safe.

What can we help you visualize? Visit the links below to schedule a service or request a quote today!

Frequently Asked Questions About Video Pipe Inspections

What size pipes can GPRS inspect?

Our elite VPI Project Managers can inspect pipes from 2” in diameter and up.

Can you locate pipes in addition to evaluating their integrity?

Yes, our SIM and NASSCO-certified Project Managers use VPI technology equipped with sondes, which are instrument probes that allow them to ascertain the location of underground utilities from an inaccessible location. This allows them to use electromagnetic (EM) locating to map sewer systems at the same time they’re evaluating them for defects.

What deliverables does GPRS offer when conducting a VPI?

GPRS is proud to offer WinCan reporting to our Video Pipe Inspection clients. Maintaining sewers starts with understanding sewer conditions, and WinCan allows GPRS Project Managers to collect detailed, NASSCO-compliant inspection data. GPRS Project Managers not only inspect the interior condition of sewer pipes, laterals, and manholes – they can also provide a map of their location. The GPRS Mapping & Modeling Department can provide detailed GPS overlays and CAD files. Our detailed WinCan/NASSCO reports contain screenshots of the interior condition of the pipe segments that we inspect, as well as a video file for further evaluation, documentation, and/or reference.

Why is it important to have your sewer lines inspected?

A sewer inspection helps your team pinpoint leaks, damage, or obstructions quickly, saving you time and money you would otherwise spend on massive repairs once those little problems were allowed to evolve into significant issues. Thorough investigation of sewer and lateral pipe lines using video pipe inspection services is also less expensive and destructive than exploratory excavating.

Are there sewer camera inspection services near me?

Yes! GPRS has a network of over 500 Project Managers strategically stationed across every major market in the U.S. We’re able to quickly mobilize to your job site no matter where it’s located. Click here to schedule a service or request a quote today!