You may not think about the innerworkings of your city’s sewage system, but these lines contribute significantly to the environmental condition of your area. Busted or backed-up sewer lines can lead to major headaches for you and your neighbors. A little-known trick that helps maintain the quality of sewer systems is known as a smoke test. Consider a few key pieces of information about how this test works and how it may affect your home.
What Is Sewer Smoke Testing?
A sewer smoke test, as its name suggests, involves blowing smoke through the main and lateral lines of a city’s sewer system. As the smoke travels through the pipes, it will reveal any leaks it encounters. For instance, a leaky underground pipe may be evidenced by smoke rising up through the grass. This technique is considered to be a key part of inflow and infiltration studies.
What Is Its Purpose?
Cities with older sewer systems may have trouble keeping up with the flow produced by an increasing population. When there are leaks in the pipes, groundwater can leak into the sewer system, making the situation worse. In extreme situations, the pipes could sustain significant damage or there may be sewage backups. After performing these tests, technicians can document the locations of various leaks. It is sometimes necessary to dig down to the pipes to fix areas with cracks or gaps.
Is It Safe?
Sewer smoke testing can be accomplished using smoke candles or smoke fluids. These products are considered to be non-toxic and dissipate quickly. Even so, it is a good idea for technicians to wear masks when working with the smoke. Additionally, these professionals should notify homeowners of the test dates so they can be prepared. When smoke testing occurs near your residence, be sure to close all doors and windows. You may also wish to run some water down each of your drains just before the test. This simple act may decrease the likelihood of smoke entering your home.
If you are notified of an upcoming smoke test in your area, know that this process is essential to maintaining the drainage pipes you and so many forbesblog others use from day to day. Be sure to avoid connecting to sewer pipes illegally so that you do not encounter any problems when the test is completed. Soon enough, the testing process will be over and your neighborhood will be better off for it.
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