Infiltration and inflow, abbreviated as I/I, refers to groundwater or rainwater that comes into the sanitary sewer system through cracked pipes, leaky manholes, roof and gutter downspouts, sump pumps, foundation drains, and incorrectly connected storm drains. Groundwater, rainwater, and snowmelt are the sources of most inflow and infiltration, and an excess of this can cause problems.
Research tells us that as much as 40% of I/I enters the sanitary sewer system from building sewers. Because the sanitary sewer system was not designed to handle this excess water, it easily becomes overloaded during storms or heavy rainfall. The result is often flooded basements, sewer backups or raw sewage overflowing into our local waterways.
When I/I enters the municipal sewer system, it can easily overwhelm the wastewater treatment process, resulting in increased costs to the city that eventually get passed on to you as a property owner. The City of Golden Valley is working to become a regional leader in reducing excess I/I, and at Marvel Sewer and Drain, we are proud to be part of the effort.
We have some tips to avoid problems with inflow and infiltration in your Golden Valley home:
- Only flush toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. Never use the toilet to dispose of feminine hygiene products, sanitary wipes, paper towels, cleaning cloths or any other form of garbage.
- Use sink and shower drain strainers to collect hair and other debris and prevent them from clogging up drains.
- Strain kitchen greases into a designated container and dispose of it in a trash bin.
- Dispose of food scraps appropriately, either via composting or throwing it in the garbage.
- Don’t flush garbage, medication or harmful chemicals down the toilet.
- Don’t plant trees or large shrubs near sewer lines. In their instinctive quest for nutrients and moisture, roots can easily invade sewer pipes and cause stubborn clogs.
- Don’t pour cooking grease down the drain. Grease accumulates inside drains and leads to major pipe blockages.
- Don’t connect any type of flood control system directly to your sanitary sewer. These types of connections are against the law.
With these tips in mind, you can help prevent accidents involving inflow and infiltration in your home. For more information, contact Marvel Sewer and Drain for details.