Inflow & Infiltration
Inflow and infiltration
The flow of storm water into the sanitary sewer system from sources such as downspouts and illegal sump pump connections through direct or indirect connections
The flow of water into the sanitary sewer system through aged or defective pipes and/or maintenance chambers (i.e. cracks, defective joints, etc.) through soil (both groundwater and rainwater).
Video Demonstration of Inflow & Infiltration:
Smoke Testing in sanitary sewer systems:
The purpose of the testing is to make sure the sanitary sewer is working at its best
The smoke used in the test has no odour, is safe to your health, and will disappear after a few minutes.
- The smoke test consists of:
- Blowing a harmless coloured vapour into the sewer maintenance holes and pipes and observing where the smoke exits from the system
- The smoke is expected to exit primarily out of maintenance holes on the street and the sewer-plumbing stack at the top of your house
- It is also possible for smoke to exit storm water catch basins and roof downspouts at the side of a house
- Smoke is not intended to enter your home, only the internal plumbing system. If it does:
- The smoke is not harmful to you or your pet’s health
- It will not damage clothing, draperies or furniture
- Open a window & leave the room if the smoke is bothering you
- If you are at home and the smoke enters during testing, note the location of the smoke and contact Manager, Environmental Services at 905-563-2799 ext. 286. If you cannot identify the source of the smoke, please call 9-1-1.
- Staff from the Town and AMG Environmental will be onsite during the entire process of testing.
Preventing smoke from entering home:
Each drain should have a "gooseneck" installed (the floor drain is typically a small, perforated metal plate located near a low spot in the basement floor close to the furnace or laundry room)
- If smoke enters your home and there is water in the drain, the Town recommends that you contact a plumber.
How a "gooseneck" works:
The “gooseneck” section of your drain pipe is the “trap.”
The trap allows water to fill that section of the pipe completely.
- Since vapour and gas cannot travel through water unless under pressure, this effectively “traps” the gas in the sewer portion of the pipe.
- The vent on your system— the portion of pipe protruding from the roof of the building—prevents the gas from becoming pressurized and allows it to escape outside the structure.
- These two systems function together to keep potentially harmful sewer gases from entering your structure or home.
- If there is no water in the trap, the trap is not functioning properly.
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