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Flooding Cause - Rainwater Draining Into Sewage System

The sewer can overflow when rain or melting snow that is being captured by a weeping tile or sump pit is discharged into the sanitary sewer. Rainwater has taken up space in the underground sewer pipe. That space is meant for sewage, not rainwater. When the pipe is over filled like this, it is called sewer surcharge.

Protecting your basement and your neighbour's basement from sewer surcharge is important.  In the house shown below, there is no water in its backfill zone but sewer backup is happening. Likely rainwater from a neighbouring house is contributing to sewer backup at this house. 

Animated graphic showing sewer backing up into a home's basement

Stopping sewer surcharge

Combating sewer surcharge may involve some or all of the following actions:

  • installation of a sump pump in the basement
  • installation of a backflow valve in the basement
  • permanent disconnection of weeping tile water from the sanitary sewer
  • sloping soil from the foundation to drain rainwater and snow melt away from your basement
  • checking and cleaning eaves and downspouts to ensure they discharge properly to a splash pad