What can a sewer crawler do?

Entrust the repair and inspection of sewage pipes to sewer crawlers.

What can a sewer crawler robot do when it comes to inspecting and repairing sewer pipes?

Do you need to inspect sewer pipes? Are repairs likely to follow? Luckily, it is no longer necessary to send workers into pipes every time. So how can crawler robots replace humans?

When you have had sewers inspected using a camera and the inspection has revealed defects, the time has come to repair the sewer. When a pipe is close to the surface and within a green area, it is easy to dig out.

More likely than not, however, the defect will be located in an area where digging is not possible. In this situation, the only viable option is a trenchless method of pipe repair in which a sewer crawler robot plays the leading role.

Sewer crawlers assist during preparation for trenchless pipe repairs.

Put simply, a sewer crawler is like the operator’s extended arm. It facilitates work and repairs inside sewers that would otherwise be impossible, including the following:

  • Sewer monitoring and inspections
  • Cutting off hard blockages
  • Cutting off scaling
  • Smoothing surfaces
  • Connecting service pipes
  • Re-sealing joints
  • Repairing cracks
  • Fitting connections
  • Eliminating disruptive tree roots
  • Removing foreign objects
  • Closing off unauthorised service pipes

The most frequently used tools are robotic cutters.

The chief task of the robotic cutter after a sewer inspection is to prepare the internal surface of the pipe for the rehabilitation sleeve (or stainless steel insert) so that it adheres perfectly to the wall of the existing pipe.

Robotic cutters can remove hardened sediments, shards of broken pipes, and all types of foreign objects comprised of any material.

These crawlers navigate circular pipe profiles from DN 150 to DN 600 mm (in straight sections – without angles or bends) and oval profiles from DN 300/450 to 500/750 mm. Specific features will depend on the robot type.

Robotic sewer devices can manage other special tasks too.

In addition to standard inspections and repairs, sewer robots can also accomplish other specific tasks.

For instance, there are robotic cutters that can re-open service pipes covered over in rehabilitation and connect watertight service pipes to the main sewer pipe using hat or scarf liners. Rotating spatula-equipped units loaded with mortar mixture can repair damaged sections of the pipe.

However, simply having a good sewer crawler is not enough. An experienced operator controlling the robot from a vehicle is equally important.