Trailer Jetters 101: Your Guide to Powerful Drain Cleaning

Have you ever battled a clogged drain that just wouldn’t budge? Whether it’s a slow drain in your kitchen sink or a major blockage in a commercial sewer line, clogged drains can be a real headache. Thankfully, there’s a powerful solution: drain jetting.

Drain jetting utilizes a high-pressure water stream to blast away even the toughest clogs caused by grease buildup, mineral deposits, and even tree roots. But for extensive cleaning jobs and large-diameter pipes, regular drain jetters might not be enough. That’s where the heavy-duty champions of drain cleaning come in: trailer jetters.

Trailer jetters are the ultimate weapons against stubborn blockages. Mounted on trailers for enhanced portability, they pack a serious punch with high-pressure water pumps and large water tanks. Let’s delve deeper and explore the world of trailer jetters, understanding their capabilities and how they can benefit you.

Understanding Trailer Jetters

Imagine a high-powered pressure washer specifically designed for your pipes. That’s essentially what a trailer jetter is. This powerful piece of equipment is mounted on a trailer for easy transport and features key components like a high-pressure water pump, a large water tank, a hose reel, and a variety of jetting nozzles

The pump pressurizes water to incredible levels, which is then channeled through the hose and a specific nozzle to target the clog. The forceful water jet effectively scours the interior of the pipe, dislodging and flushing away debris, restoring proper drainage. 

Trailer jetters are specifically designed for trailer-mounted operation, offering enhanced portability for tackling jobs at various locations. Their large water tanks also allow for extended cleaning sessions without needing frequent refills.

Advantages of Using Trailer Jetters

  • Powerhouse Performance: When it comes to extensive cleaning of large sewer lines in commercial and industrial settings, trailer jetters are the go-to solution. Their immense power allows them to handle the toughest clogs that would overwhelm smaller jetters.

  • Extended Cleaning Time: The large water tanks on trailer jetters are a game-changer. You can achieve continuous cleaning without frequent refills, maximizing efficiency, especially for large-scale projects.

  • Faster Clog Removal: Compared to smaller jetters, trailer jetters clear blockages more quickly. This translates to less downtime for businesses and faster resolution to clogged drain issues.

  • Multifaceted Applications: Trailer jetters are versatile warriors in the fight against drain problems. Beyond drain cleaning, they can be used for grease removal in commercial kitchens, where stubborn grease buildup can be a real hazard. They also excel in hydro excavation, a process that safely exposes underground utilities for maintenance or repair using pressurized water.

  • Portability and Mobility: Easily transported to job sites, offering versatility in accessing drains and sewers.

  • Self-Contained System: Eliminates the need for external water sources, increasing efficiency and productivity.

  • Versatility: Suitable for residential, commercial, and municipal applications, providing a comprehensive drain cleaning solution.

Applications of Trailer Jetters

  • Residential Drain Cleaning: Clearing clogs in sinks, toilets, and main sewer lines.

  • Commercial and Industrial Plumbing: Maintaining clean and efficient drainage systems in businesses and industrial facilities.

  • Municipal Sewer Maintenance: Clearing blockages and debris from sewer lines and storm drains.

  • Emergency Response: Rapid deployment for disaster recovery and emergency drain cleaning situations.

How to Use a Trailer Jetter

The immense power of trailer jetters necessitates safe and proper operation to avoid injuries or property damage. The high-pressure water can be dangerous if not handled correctly.

For this reason, it’s highly recommended that only trained professionals operate trailer jetters. These professionals possess the necessary knowledge, experience, and safety gear to handle the equipment effectively.

Here’s a glimpse into the general process a professional might follow when using a trailer jetter (remember, this is for informational purposes only):

  1. Preparation: The professional will assess the clog’s location and severity using a camera or other tools. They will also ensure the work area is properly secured.

  2. Setup: The trailer jetter will be positioned, and the hose will be carefully connected and fed into the drain line.

  3. Jetting: The professional will activate the jetter, and the high-pressure water will be channeled through the hose to target the clog. Nozzle selection might be based on the type of clog and pipe configuration.

  4. Clearing the Blockage: The powerful water jet will dislodge and flush away the debris causing the clog, restoring proper flow in the drain.

  5. Post-Jetting Inspection: A final inspection will be conducted using a camera or other tools to ensure the clog is completely removed and everything is functioning properly.

Selecting the Right Trailer Jetter

The power and versatility of trailer jetters make them tempting solutions for various drain cleaning needs.

However, before you jump into purchasing or renting one, it’s crucial to consider several factors to ensure you select the right equipment for the job. Here’s a breakdown of key considerations:

Understanding Your Needs

The first step is to clearly define your needs. Consider the following questions:

  • What type of drain cleaning tasks will you be using the trailer jetter for? (sewer line cleaning, storm drain clearing, grease removal, hydro excavation)

  • What is the typical size of the pipes you’ll be working with? (Trailer jetters are suited for larger diameter pipes compared to smaller electric jetters)

  • How severe are the clogs you anticipate encountering? (Trailer jetters excel at handling tough clogs that might overpower smaller units)

  • Do you need maximum portability, or will the trailer jetter primarily be used at a single location?

Matching Capabilities to Requirements

Once you understand your needs, you can delve into the capabilities offered by different trailer jetters. Here are some key features to consider:

  • Trailer Size and Portability: Trailer size impacts maneuverability, especially if you need to navigate tight spaces. Consider the job sites and accessibility requirements.

  • Water Tank Capacity: Larger tanks allow for extended cleaning sessions without needing frequent refills. Choose a capacity that aligns with the anticipated job duration.

  • Pump Pressure: Pressure is crucial for tackling tough clogs. Higher pressure ratings indicate greater clog-clearing power, but you’ll want to ensure the pressure is appropriate for the pipe diameter to avoid damage.

  • Flow Rate: Flow rate refers to the volume of water delivered per minute. A higher flow rate can translate to faster cleaning times.

Maintaining Your Trailer Jetter for Optimal Performance

Just like any powerful tool, regular maintenance is crucial for keeping your trailer jetter in top shape and ensuring its longevity. Here are some key maintenance practices to follow:

  • Regularly check the water level in the tank.

  • Clean the filters to prevent debris buildup that can hinder performance.

  • Inspect the hoses and nozzles for any signs of wear and tear or damage.

  • Check components for wear and damage, and perform routine maintenance as needed.

  • Clean equipment after each use and store in a secure, dry location to prevent corrosion or damage.

  • Address common issues promptly, and seek professional assistance for complex repairs or maintenance tasks.


Trailer jetters offer a mobile and efficient solution for drain cleaning, catering to a wide range of applications and environments. 

By understanding their components, advantages, and maintenance requirements, you can harness the power of trailer jetters to tackle stubborn blockages and keep drainage systems flowing smoothly. 

Whether you’re a plumber, contractor, or municipal worker, a trailer jetter is a valuable addition to your drain cleaning arsenal.

Now it’s your turn.

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