Tips to Help Eliminate Sewer Backups
The utility constantly strives to provide the best quality sewer service to our customers and we have a full-time crew of four available 24 hours per day, seven days a week dedicated to the repair and maintenance of the system utilizing state-of-the-art equipment.
Sewer backups occur infrequently, but when they do happen, they can be very damaging. Even though we utilize some of the best equipment available to maintain the sewer system, the most important part of our sewer system maintenance lies with our customers.
Preventing the discharge of harmful items into the sewer system is the best way to stop backups from occurring. To reduce your chances of a sewer backup and to minimize damage if one occurs, please consider the following items:
- Do not flush diapers, paper towels, or plastic products into the sewer system.
- Minimize use of your garbage disposal.
- Disconnect sump pumps from the sewer line (such connections are illegal and may cause sewage to backup into the home). This also results in high costs to process the clear water.
- Elevate your furniture in below-ground levels if basement fixtures are present.
- Do not plant trees and shrubs over your sewer lateral. The roots of trees seek out the joints of the sanitary sewer and eventually clog the pipe.
An increasingly common cause of sewage overflows and basement backups is sewer pipes blocked by grease. Grease is often washed into the sewage system through the kitchen sink, and it sticks to the sides of pipes inside your house, in your building sewer, and in the sewer main in the street. Grease also gets into the sewer from poorly maintained grease traps in restaurants and other businesses. Over time, it can build up and block the whole pipe. If this happens in your home or building sewer, it may involve an expensive repair bill. If it happens in the street, it may result in all the sewage from the neighborhood pouring into your basement. Here are a couple helpful items to consider to help prevent grease problems:
- Never pour grease or oil down sink drains or into toilets.
- Keep a waste grease and oil container near the stove, and pour waste grease into it.
- Scrape grease and food scraps from trays, plates, pots, pans, utensils, and grills and cooking surfaces into a can or the trash for disposal or recycling.
- Do not put grease down garbage disposals.
- Put strainers in sink drains to catch food scraps and other solids, and empty the strainers into the trash for disposal.
If your sink drains slowly or gurgles, your system works poorly during rainstorms, you smell sewer odor, or see water coming out of a manhole, please contact us immediately.
Please contact Randy if you have any questions 608.849.4107.