As they work toward the Province of BC’s goal of eliminating sewage overflows, the City of Vancouver is replacing older, combined sewer systems with a new separated sewer system. This means all properties within the City of Vancouver will eventually need to have separated sewer systems that originate at the building, extending to the city’s main sewer.
The upgrading of older, inadequate drainage systems is now mandatory within the City of Vancouver and is the responsibility of the homeowner to pay for any upgrades deemed necessary.
If you are a property owner you are responsible for maintaining the sewer lines on your property – up to where they meet the City’s sewer connection.
The City of Vancouver is Running Two Sewer Separation Programs at This Time:
- The overall sewer mains are being separated so that storm drains carry storm water runoff separately from other waste water.
- Similar work is being done to separate the sewer mains that serve private properties.
Why Is Sewer Separation Necessary?
During dry weather, both types of runoff go to the sewage treatment plant together without problems. However, during periods of heavy rain, the high volume of storm water can exceed the capacity of a combined sewer system, resulting in untreated waste overflowing and emptying directly into our waterways, flooding our streets and occasionally backing up into basements.
In a two-pipe, separated sewer system, storm water is collected through storm drains and travels through different pipes than sewage and other waste water, resulting in the elimination of combined sewer overflow as well as preventing flooding. Rainwater collection begins with the perimeter drainage systems of all buildings, including private homes.
What Do You Need To Do?
You will be notified by the City when sewer work in your area is imminent, at which time you’ll need to begin the process of upgrading to the new sewer separation requirements on your property. To do this, call K. C.’s Plumbing & Heating. We will help you determine the scope of work. We will contact the City to obtain permits before we begin and inspect the work after it’s done.
If you are building a new home or commercial structure, or are about to undergo major renovations to an existing property, it is in your best interest to address the sewer connection. Call K. C.’s Plumbing & Heating for professional advice. We will evaluate your drainage system and advise a course of action.
Components of Your Drain System
As sewer upgrades take place, it is necessary to look at all components of your home’s drainage system, including the foundation drain tile (also known as French drain, weeping tile or perimeter drain) and drainage pipes that connect to the City’s sewer mains. Perimeter drainage systems and sewer connection pipes that are damaged by roots or are corroding due to age will probably need to be re-piped or replaced.
If your property currently has only one pipe connecting to the city’s sewer, that will have to be replaced with separate pipes – one for the sanitary waste from your home’s interior and the other for rainwater removal from your property to the storm sewer main.
In particular, older properties should undergo a complete drain system evaluation, including sump pumps, perimeter drainage components and sewer connection pipes. K. C.’s Plumbing & Heating is Vancouver’s complete plumbing service provider and are experts in underground drainage systems.
You can count on us for expert advice and the very best work at reasonable prices. Call us when you receive your notice letter from the City of Vancouver advising that sewer separation work in your neighborhood is underway.