Jetter Makes Clearing Clogs Easy

Detachable hose reel allows portable water jetter to work where others fear to tread.
Jetter Makes Clearing Clogs Easy
The Jet-Set JM-3055 from General Pipe Cleaners generates 5.5 gpm at 3,000 psi and features on-demand Vibra-Pulse technology and a detachable hose reel, which boosts productivity by eliminating the need to horse the machine up and down basement stairs.

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When Jessi Fink decided to invest in a portable water jetter three years ago, he had three things in mind: versatility, reliability and ease of operation. A Jet-Set JM-3055 wheeled unit, made by General Pipe Cleaners (a division of General Wire Spring Co.), ticked off every box on that checklist.

Versatility was top of mind for Fink, the owner of Fink Plumbing in Redfield, South Dakota, about 40 miles south of Aberdeen in the northeastern part of the state. Fink was just starting to establish his business, so he couldn’t afford to buy a lot of machines to do a lot of different things. But he could afford one machine that can do many things, which is where the JM-3055 excels.

Unclogging residential and commercial sewer lines? Check. Thawing frozen pipelines? Yup. Busting through tough grease clogs? Yes, sir. Cleaning septic-field drainlines? No problem. Cutting through tangles of tree roots? Sure thing. Handling extra-long drainline runs on farms? Bring ’em on.

“We use it a ton,” Fink says. “We even put a pressure washer wand on the hose and use it to clean vehicles in the shop. It offers us a lot of utility. We use it

The JM-3055 features a triplex pump that generates a flow of 5.5 gpm at 3,000 psi; a 480 cc Briggs and Stratton Vanguard engine with electric start; a detachable 300-foot-capacity hose reel (3/8-inch-diameter hose) with a drag brake, reel lock and swivel; on-demand Vibra-Pulse technology that moves the nozzle head through tight bends; and four 13-inch pneumatic tires that make it easier to maneuver the 299-pound machine.

One of Fink’s favorite features is the detachable hose reel, which boosts productivity by eliminating the need to horse the machine up and down basement stairs. With its four pneumatic tires and balanced design, it’s easy to tip the unit onto its back wheels and roll it around. But the removable reel enables easier access to hard-to-reach areas, Fink notes.

“When you can take just a reel into a house, it simplifies things because you don’t have to lug a big machine in there,” says Fink, who estimates his business is evenly split between residential and commercial work. “And if we didn’t have the JM-3055, we’d probably have to take a cable machine into houses, which wouldn’t be as powerful. That also would be less flexible if we run into smaller piping — the cable wouldn’t bend around very well.”

As for reliability, Fink says that during peak drain cleaning in spring and fall, the unit runs at least 20 hours a week. Year after year, the JM-3055 continues to run with minimal issues, aside from the normal, expected kinds of wear and tear, Fink says. “I think we fixed a bypass valve twice and have had no problems at all with the engine. I’m very happy with the machine’s reliability.

“Breakdowns on job sites aren’t good,” he continues. “They cost us time and money and make us look unorganized and unprofessional. And when people have clogged lines, they usually lose their sense of humor, so you want to get the job done quickly.”

Fink also praises the machine’s ease of operation. “It’s a turn-the-key kind of tool — very easy to operate,” he says. “It doesn’t take much time at all to train guys to run it … even my most inexperienced employees can run it with just five minutes of explanation. You turn it on and away you go. After that, I don’t have to stand there and watch them use it. And our technicians can focus more on cleaning lines than on operating the machine.”

The machine handles even the toughest clogs — thick grease plugs in restaurant drainpipes, for example. Fink recalls a recent job in a bar that had no grease trap and a drainline that hadn’t been cleaned in years. “It took awhile, but on the third or fourth run, we got the 50-foot run of pipe cleaned out,” he says. “That was one of the worst clogs we’ve ever encountered. But I was pretty confident it would get through — and it did. Grease and oil are no match for this machine.”

Because the JM-3055 can deliver such high pressure, Fink Plumbing can clean more drainlines per week, and that increased productivity goes right to the bottom line. “The profitability comes through our ability to clean more drains,” he notes. “It’s a time-saving issue.”

When asked if the machine has been a good investment, Fink says the JM-3055 is his company’s best drain cleaning tool. “The machine has paid for itself.”


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