Illegal Connections

Here’s how you can help prevent flooding in your community! When down spouts and sump pumps are connected to the city sanitary sewer system, their flow is taking up space needed to carry sewage to our treatment plant. These incorrect and illegal connections can cause sewage to back up into your basement or overflow into our rivers and streams.

Changing Down Spout Connections

  1. Cut downspouts in two places. Leave enough space to insert elbow.
  2. Remove section of existing pipe and discard.
  3. Ensure no broken pipe or debris enters into pipe.
  4. Crumple newspaper into solid ball and stuff tightly about 6″ into boot.
  5. Mix mortar into paste-like consistency and seal above newspaper plug.
  6. Secure elbow to down spout with screws and attach pipe extension to elbow. Make sure paper ball fits tightly to prevent mortar from leaking into sewer pipe. Crimp existing downspout to fit inside of new elbow.

If your downspouts disappear into the ground, they are most likely connected to the sanitary sewer system. The water from your downspouts should discharge into your yard, a storm sewer or other appropriate drainage structure.

Changing Sump Pump Connections

If your sump pump is connected to any other pipe in your home, it is most likely connected incorrectly to the city sewer system. The pipe from your basement sump pump should always discharge directly into your yard or storm sewer.

Water should be directed into your yard, away from your home, so that it doesn’t puddle along the wall and seep back into your basement. Be sure the pump discharges are not directed onto your neighboring properties.

Sump pump disconnections are often more complex and the cost associated with the disconnections will vary. You must be familiar with plumbing or electrical work to disconnect a sump pump. Your plumber or home improvement professional can give you an estimate to do the work.

Rain Gardens

Catching water in a raingarden allows it to slowly filter into the ground. This means less rain water is lost into your storm sewers which also means there is less flooding and erosion into our river and streams. What a beautiful way to improve the quality of water in our river. Keeping water on your property and letting it ‘perc” into the soil also means more water is available to recharge the water table underground.

It is important to locate your rain garden where it will collect the most amount of rainfall runoff possible.

Reduce your sewage and water bills and help us to help you save taxpayer’s money!