City to perform smoke test on the southwest

Published 7:53 am Thursday, August 22, 2019

As part of the City of Austin sanitary sewer system evaluation program, city crews, with the assistance of WHKS & Co., will conduct smoke testing in the southwest central Austin area for several days between Aug. 26 and Sept. 6, weather dependent.

Southwest central Austin is generally, south of Oakland Avenue West, west of Main Street South and northeast of Turtle Creek. The purpose of smoke testing is to identify areas where clear water may be leaking into the sanitary sewer system.

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This process involves forcing non-toxic smoke into the sewer pipes with a mechanical blower and observing the areas from which the smoke appears. While the blower is running, crews will travel quickly throughout the area taking photographs of problem areas. The smoke is non-toxic, leaves no residue, and creates no fire hazard.

The white smoke may appear from vent pipes on the roofs of buildings, and from defects in the sewer lines.

The smoke may enter your home or building if a drain trap is dry or if the building has defective plumbing. Residents should pour approximately a gallon of water into each drain to make sure that the trap is full. A drain that has regular use should already be full. If you have any questions, please contact the City of Austin – Engineering Department.

If you have questions or concerns, contact city of Austin – Engineering Department at 1-507-437-9950.