If you’ve cleaned drains at any point in your career in the last 100 years, changes are good you are familiar with Ridgid Drain Cleaning machines. There also have not been a lot of design changes in recent years, however we are now seeing a little competiton coming from Milwaukee Tools and other cordless tool brands looking to take a piece of the pie. Ridgid of course has a big leg up here with many years of product development so we are excited to see a totally new design, built on what’s worked for them, with the K-5208 Section Drain Cleaners, available as machine only 61688, with 4x 15’ cable 61692 or 7x 15’ cables 62378. So how does this stack up to other Ridgid Dain Cleaner options?
When it comes to Drain Cleaners you first need to ask Drum Machines or Sectional Machine which is a debate you can find a ton of passionate arguments on both sides. Size, weight, cable length, mess, time, clearing power, etc are all hot button topics but the biggest complaints about sectionals typically comes down to messiness, size and time to run all the cables which is where Ridgid really focused on improving the sectional machine for the K-5208. Will they be able to convert fans of the Drum units, probably not but it certainly is a much better sectional machine!
Size of the K-5208 is 35% lighter and 71% smaller footprint than previous sectional machine designed for 2” – 8” lines. The power is not lost however with a 3/4 HP motor spinning at 700 RPM for 7/8” and 1-1/4” cables. The unit breaks down into 2 parts with the new Cable Carrier 61708 able to store 5 or 6 cables depending on thickness in a self-contained unit. This means the unit can easily be carried by hand on/off job, up/down stairs and pretty much anywhere you need it without much hassle.
Cleanliness is another big reason some choose a Drum Machine over a sectional, this new K-5208 with the new cable carrier work hard to address this concern with internal machine fluid management to contain any mess from the machine to cable storage and especially in transportation.
Speed is another complaint of the sectional setup as well as getting 60’, 75’ or 90’+ of cable ran can take a fair amount of time before you ever reach your target. Multiply all that for teardown as well and it can be time consuming. The K-5208 promises to be the fastest sectional Ridgid has ever made with the final feather in the cap of efficiency, the new Trident Decoupler 61718 which makes quick work of disconnecting sectional cables, seems like a super simple idea but we can see how it could save a couple of minutes on each job.
Is the K-5208 enough to bridge the gap between the pros and cons of drum machines and sections? Was the threat of the new Milwaukee M18 Switch Pack Drum/Sectional Machines enough to send the Ridgid engineers back to the drawing board to come up with a better mouse traps? Whether the threat of the Red team or other competiton, drove them to build a better unit or this was planned all along we are super happy to see some new options from Ridgid Plumbing Tools and look forward to more to come.