In times of heavy rain, which Toronto area residents are no stranger to come summertime, homeowners tend to experience a multitude of plumbing issues, particularly in homes with basement or lower level floors.
Sanitary systems often get backed up in times of excessive rain, as some neighborhoods combine their sanitary systems with their storm water systems. The main can become filled beyond capacity in these scenarios, and as water seeks a path of least resistance, it can find a new route of drainage through a floor or plumbing drain in the lowest level of buildings, which can lead to catastrophic flooding.
Newer homes tend to be designed to eliminate backup potential by means of an overhead sewer or backwater valve.
Here is some important information about these devices – what they are, how they work, and how you can implement one in your home.
What is a Backwater Valve System?
Homes with a backwater valve system are designed to block backflow water into your home. These devices vary in complexity and ease of operation, but for the most part, a backwater valve is a simple mechanical device that allows water to flow in one direction, away from your home. While it still allows water from sinks, toilets, and tubs to flow into the sewer system, the valve prevents backed up water from re-entering the home by means of a backwater flap, which automatically shuts closed in the event of a water backup.
There are a few different types of backwater valves with rather complex operational qualities, but they are mainly distinguished by the location in which they’re installed. Most commonly, backwater valves are installed within the residence by cutting a hole in the foundation directly above the main sewer line. Another type is installed outside of the home, directly on the sewer line.
What is an overhead sewer?
An overhead sewer system is one of the number one solutions for basement flooding here in Toronto. With an overhead sewer system, a pump is installed underneath the basement floor which intercepts sewage that flows into the basement fixtures and basement floor drains. This ejector pump then sends this sewage up beyond the flood level, allowing it to then properly drain via gravity into the sewer service line.
This is a great option for avoiding basement flooding, as it is highly unlikely that sewers will back up beyond the ground level. If the water does indeed go higher, a check valve (found in the ejector pump) keeps the water in the pipes and not in your home. Backed up sewage is similarly housed in sewer pipes in this system, so you will not experience backup in those fixtures either.
Which design will work best for my home?
To determine which system will be the best for your home, it is essential that you consult with a highly experienced and professional Toronto plumber.
There are many specific system requirements based on the preexisting condition of your system, government regulations, and the specific layout of your home, all of which will need to be evaluated before a decision can be made.
If you are still looking for trusted, licensed plumber – Mister Plumber in Toronto, Mississauga, Etobicoke, Scarborough, North York specializing sewer repair, upgrade waterline, water service upgrade, drain cleaning, backwater valve installation, lead pipe replacement, re-piping and emergency plumbing, Mister Plumber uses the latest technology to effectively troubleshoot and quickly repair any plumbing problem and offers a fast response and free estimates.