Smart Sewer and Drain Inspection

Compact camera from General Pipe Cleaners leverages smart technology for instant results.
Smart Sewer and Drain Inspection
A sales representative from General Pipe Cleaners affixes a tablet onto the expandable holder of the Gen-Eye Prism inspection system. The Wi-Fi transmitter inside the Prism sends video to a smartphone or tablet, while a free app lets the technician or customer easily view and record video inspections at a range of up to 500 feet. (Photo by Paul Thompson)

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Pipe and drain inspection technology is getting smarter. That is, it’s incorporating smart technology to provide instant results, making technicians lives easier and putting customers at ease. That’s why the Gen-Eye Prism is getting so much attention.

The Gen-Eye Prism, a smart camera inspection system rolled out by General Pipe Cleaners at the 2016 Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment & Transport Show, lets the technician use their own tablet or smartphone to view and record an inspection. The Wi-Fi transmitter inside the Prism sends video to a smartphone or tablet, while a free app lets the technician or customer easily view and record video inspections at a range of up to 500 feet. The feature is not only convenient, but also efficient, according to Marty Silverman, vice president of marketing for General Pipe Cleaners.

“Because the unit has Wi-Fi built in, contractors no longer have to spend money buying a monitor and recording device with their camera purchase,” says Silverman. “They already own both if they own a smartphone or tablet. They also save time if they send a copy of the recording to their customers. Instead of going back to the office to send, they can post the recording to YouTube or email it in the field.”

The compact Prism Command Module comes in at only 3 pounds, and can be mounted securely on any Gen-Eye GL or POD reel. An expandable holder on top of the unit safely supports a standard-size tablet, and is adjustable for easy viewing. Optional brackets for mini-tablets and smartphones are available. General Pipe Cleaners displayed a prototype of the system at the 2015 WWETT Show before officially rolling out the Prism for sale this past January. According to Silverman, the feedback has been positive.

“Customers like the cost savings and benefits of the Wi-Fi system,” he says. “They also like the compact, lightweight design of the Prism.”  

Despite that compact package, though, the Prism offers all the features of a full-size video inspection system. It includes an on-screen distance counter to track how much pushrod is in the line, a nine-page titler with full keyboard to add a company name and job locations to videos, a date and time stamp for company records, and an LED dimmer control for easier readability in various lighting conditions. It also includes a power port for tablets or smartphones, so the technician can keep their personal unit charged as they do the inspection.

Complete systems include a self-leveling color camera that automatically keeps the picture right side up; 2-, 3- and 6-inch trap skids; and a 512 Hz transmitter for easy camera tracking with a Hot Spot pipe locator. Silverman says the versatile and compact unit is a fit for multiple industries.

“The Prism is going to be a good fit for WWETT Show attendees who are drain cleaning specialists, plumbers, or those that do plumbing work, as well as those that do pipe relining work,” he says. “That versatility helped create a great deal of interest in the Prism and its advantages at the 2016 show.”

General is a longtime exhibitor at the show, and aims to roll out at least one new technological innovation every year. While Silverman says the plans for the 2017 show are no different, he’s keeping the details close to the vest.

“I’m not going to let the cat out of the bag early,” he says. “You’ll have to wait for the next show to see what we’ve been working on.” 800/245-6200;


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