Cleaning Cast Iron Without Breaking It

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Cast Iron Before Cleaning

“I’ve tried cleaning cast iron in the past with various tools and I haven’t had great luck. Maybe the cast was too far gone or my tools too aggressive. My question revolves around your high speed drain cabling equipment and how you expect that to make things better rather than worse. Won’t the higher speed tear up the pipe more than my slow cable machine? What keeps it from bouncing through the wall of a thinned out cast iron pipe?

Your question is very timely as we’ve just launched our Quik Coating system to address rehabilitation of drain waste and vent systems. Many older homes were plumbed with cast iron and the piping is at or near the end of it’s useful life. The options for these pipes are to either tear out the walls and replace them, or rehabilitate them. Many contractors are afraid of destroying the old pipes with aggressive cleaning methods. To minimize the destructive cleaning many have tried jetting or cabling with “milder” tools to prevent damage, but most spend a lot of time with small results.

At Pipe Lining Supply, we’ve taken a different approach. We’ve added nylon brushes before and after

UHS Flex Shaft, Brush, Chain Knocker, Brush

either a chain knocker or a sandpaper device. This orientation will allow the operator to control the cleaning devices in the center of the pipe without banging against the wall of the pipe. For the chain knocker, you can set the cutting diameter equal to the inside diameter of the pipe being cleaned and know that the centering brushes will keep the cutter centered and not let the chains catch on the pipe or thrust through the pipe wall. The same with our unique sanding device that slips over the cable and allows the center brushes before and after the sanding device. This orientation allows you to put any type of cutting head to the end of the flex shaft cable we supply.

With this orientation, you can clean 3′ to 5′ of cast iron pipe in less than a minute depending on the pipe size and amount of tuberculation.

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