Helpful Tips About Sewage

Odors


By its very nature, sewage has a bad odor! To control the odor in our homes and businesses, plumbing is installed with "traps" to prevent the odors from reaching buildings. There are various types of traps such as the "P trap" - (which is shaped like the letter P laid on it's side). The "S trap" is shaped like the letter S and is usually found under most sinks. Another type of trap is the "Bell trap." This trap is usually found in basement floors.

All of the traps have one thing in common: they all must have water in them to prevent the sewer gasses from passing through. When sewer odors occur, it usually means that the water has evaporated or leaked out of the trap allowing the sewer gas to pass through. Over time, some sewer traps become defective and need to be repaired or replaced.

In basement drains, pour some water into drains that don't get used often. For "bell traps," you can pour a small amount of vegetable oil in the trap. Vegetable oil won't evaporate and will give you a good seal!

Grease disposal


How many times have you been tempted to pour bacon grease or some other type of grease down the drain? You may think, "I'll just rinse it with plenty of hot water and it'll be okay."

Don't do it!

When the liquid grease gets into the sewer lines, it can cool rapidly, even if flushed with hot water. Once it cools, it begins to form a layer on the inside of the sewer pipe, constricting its flow. Eventually, enough grease accumulates and the sewer line becomes blocked. This will cause sewage to back up into your home! If the blockage is in your service lateral, it may mean a service call by a plumber costing you hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars.

Contact the Sanitary Board


Always call the Sanitary Board first at 304-797-8550, before calling a plumber.

There may be a blockage in the main line which we will correct. This saves you the expense of paying the plumber's fees.

Throw It Out


To properly dispose of cooking grease, pour the grease into another container which you can throw away in the trash when it cools.

Chemical Disposal


One of the ongoing problems that are faced by sewer workers and the sewage treatment plant is customers disposing of chemicals in the sewers. This is a very hazardous practice! Pouring a small amount of gasoline or paint thinner down the sewer can create an explosive condition. Fumes from spent chemicals can seep into other homes through defective traps and cause possible explosions.

Sewer workers often must enter manholes for maintenance and cleaning. Chemicals that are poured down the drain, can use up the oxygen in the manholes and create a toxic or explosive atmosphere that can injure or kill a sewer worker.

At the treatment plant, these chemicals can create a toxic environment for our biological treatment. This eventually can cause problems with the operations which can lead to an upset condition. This condition can result in the plant exceeding it's permitted levels and allowing pollution to enter the Ohio River.

Remember to dispose of all chemical in a proper manner. Don't pour chemicals down the drain!