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Avoid water in your basement
As our climate changes, we are seeing more intense storms than we have in past years. Our sewer system can get overwhelmed by these huge downpours and more of us are finding water in our basements. In Chicago, the sewer system also handles rainwater removal. The Chicago Department of Water Management is working closely with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District to increase the capacity of our drainage systems.
There are some steps homeowners can take to help prevent water from backing up into their basements:
- Disconnect downspout connections from the sewer system.
- Make sure to direct downspout flow to areas with permeable surfaces that can properly absorb the stormwater or use rain barrels to collect the water directly from the downspouts.
- Avoid running a dishwasher or washing machine during storms.
- Clear the area around downspouts to allow water to flow freely away from your foundation.
- Clear drains and sewers of debris and snow to allow drainage for melting.
- Do not dump fats/oils/greases in private drains or public catch basins.
- For better resistance to flooding in the future, it can be helpful to install rain gardens, green landscaping, or stormwater trees in your yard to help retain rainwater.
Now that your old water main has been replaced and your water service has been connected to the new water main, it is important to flush your plumbing of any sediment, rust or metals, including any lead to maintain water quality.
If your water has been shut off due to non-payment, nearby construction, or an unknown reason, check out this guide to determine who to contact.
Neighborhood construction projects involving water and sewer main replacements.