Inspect the gutters on your home or business to
see if the downspout(s) connect to a sanitary sewer line. If the gutters are
connected, have them disconnected. The runoff water from the roof can
contribute to storm sewer overflow.
the gutter in front of your property becomes clogged with leaves or debris, clear it out. Such efforts can
prevent a significant amount of run-off from entering the storm sewer system
and ending up in local creeks and lakes.
Sump pump systems are designed to capture
surface or ground water that enters basements or crawl spaces and pump it away
from the house. Make sure the basement sump pump does not connect to your
sewage drain pipes, or to a sink or floor drain in your basement. The water
from these pumps can overload the sanitary sewer causing an overflow of raw
sewage into a street, stream, or someone else’s basement. If you have a sump
pump, make sure the discharge is
directed outside your house and NOT into the sanitary sewer system. That’s
called a cross connection, is a leading cause of Inflow & Infiltration, and results in higher sanitary sewer charges.
pouring grease down your sink. When
the grease cools in the sewer line it can form clogs and blockages, which then
can cause the sanitary sewer to overflow or back up in buildings. Grease can
also contribute to restricted flow in your home plumbing and service laterals, resulting in costly repairs.
Avoid planting trees and shrubs above or near
the service lateral that runs from your home to the street. Roots can grow into
the pipes and clog sewers, causing
them to back up and overflow.
Do not flush disposable wipes down the toilet or
drain, even if the labeling says
they are “flushable”.
If you’ve had a history of backups, a routine
sewer cleaning is recommended. In any case, a sewer check-up once every two
years doesn’t hurt.
You can also help by maintaining healthy lawns
and not leaving debris or possible
pollutants on lawns, driveways, or streets.