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Notice of Sewer Cleaning - Western Shore

sewer cleaning map of western shore

Sewer cleaning will take place in the Western Shore area May 13th to 17th, 2024, Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5:00pm, weather permitting.  

What are sewers?
Sewers are underground pipes that carry wastewater from homes and businesses to the wastewater treatment plants where it is treated and then released. Everything you pour down your drains or flush down your toilet goes into a sewer.

Why are you cleaning the sewers?
The cleaning and inspection program keeps the sewer system operating efficiently by:

  • Helping prevent blockages and backups.
  • Removing built-up debris, such as tree roots, grease, grit, and sand.
  • Determining the condition of the sewer so we can repair or replace sewers as necessary.

How do you clean the sewers?
We use a high-pressure nozzle to flush water down the sewer. The dirt and debris are sucked up through a manhole by a large vacuum truck and taken to the landfill.

How long does it take to clean the sewers on each street?
It usually takes about one day to clean the sewer on each block. However, some sewers can take longer, depending on their size and condition.

Do I need to do anything before you clean the sewers on my street?
Yes. Occasionally during cleaning and inspection, air pressure in the sewer can cause water to splash out through toilets, sinks and drains.

Take the following precautions to prevent water damage in your home:

  • Close the lids on all toilet bowls when not in use.
  • Insert drain plugs in all sinks and bathtubs when not in use.
  • Remove all floor mats in bathrooms.
  • Place an old towel around the base of toilets.
  • If you have a float plug in your floor drain or a backwater valve installed in your house, ensure that it is free of debris and operating properly.
  • Wrap the cover of your basement floor drains with plastic (i.e., a freezer bag). Place something heavy over the floor drains to keep the plastic-covered floor drain covers in place. 
  • You may put things back as they were when the equipment has moved off your block.

Will I notice anything after you have cleaned the sewers on my street?
Sometimes the sewer cleaning and inspection leaves an odour in the home. If so, run some water down the sink and bathtub drains, flush the toilets, pour a pail of water into each basement floor drain and open the windows. After a short time, the odour should disappear.

Can I use the toilets and my water while you are cleaning the sewer on my block?
Yes. However, be careful as air pressure in the sewer during the cleaning and inspection can sometimes cause water to splash out through toilets, sinks and drains. Remember to close the lids on all toilet bowls when not in use and insert drain plugs in all sinks and bathtubs when not in use.

How will I know when you are cleaning the sewers on my street?
In most cases, we will put a notice in your mailbox before we clean the sewers on your street. If we need to clean the sewer quickly because of a blockage, we won’t have time to let you know in advance.

When do you clean and inspect the sewers?
We clean and inspect sewers in selected areas of the Municipality each year, usually from April to November, Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5:00pm. The program goal is to clean and inspect all sewer systems in the Municipality on a 5-year rotation. Areas where there are persistent problems may be cleaned on a more frequent basis. We realize the equipment can be noisy and may disturb residents. Sometimes this cannot be avoided, and we appreciate your patience.

Ways you can protect your home against sewer backup
The sewer cleaning and inspection program is one of the steps that we take to reduce the risk of sewer backup.
There are steps you can take to protect your home against basement flooding, including:

  • Install a backwater valve and sump pit drainage system.
  • Check and maintain your backwater valve and sump pit drainage system regularly.
  • Improve drainage around your house.