Deteriorated sewer lines and improper stormwater connections cause a problem called inflow and infiltration. The region’s wastewater collection and treatment system is designed to carry only so much water and sewage. Inflow and infiltration of stormwater runoff and groundwater can overload the system, increasing the difficulty and cost of transporting and treating wastewater.
If smoke testing reveals a defect in the public portion of the wastewater collection system, the defect is corrected as soon as possible. If extensive defects are found, capital rehabilitation projects are planned, funded and completed to correct the problem.
If smoke testing identifies a stormwater connection prohibited in the City code, such as a roof drain connected to the sanitary sewer, the property owner is notified and is required to correct the problem.
If the testing indicates a defect in the private portion of the sewer, which is usually in the line that connects the building to the public sewer, the owner is notified of potential problems with the sewer and repair or replacement of the defective line is recommended.
Residents with questions about the City’s smoke testing program can call the Public Works Maintenance Division at 541-682-4800.