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Thread: how to hook up a residential sewer line from a home

  1. #1
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    how to hook up a residential sewer line from a home

    I had a question for the full time excavators out there, what do you do to join the pvc to a citys sewer.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator willie59's Avatar
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    Around here, unless there's one already there, you have to get the local utility to run a lateral off of the main line. Then you just cement the PVC into the lateral pipe.
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    Go down to the office of the governing entity in your area and ask to see the plans and layout for the sewer system thats in your street... it may already have a saddle on the main to hook your sewer up to.

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    Each city has their own set of rules. Call them and talk to them or get a book of "Standard Specifications for Construction" if your city has one. A lot will aslo depend on the material composition of the sewer main itself. My town has, primarily, clay mains. They allow a licensed, bonded, excavator to install new taps on the exisiting mains. They specify the use of a PVC saddle. The clay must be cut to the oval shape of the saddle invert. If you screw it up you will be replacing a piece of the main line. This can create a lot more work depending what they demand that you do with the sewage, that is coming down the main, while you replace the pipe. Maybe you can get more specifics so we can address your exact situation.

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    Super Moderator CM1995's Avatar
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    First you need to ask the Utility that owns the sewer you are wanting to tie onto how they want it done. In my experience, every municipality and county sewer system has different specs and quirks on how they want it done.

    In some jurisdictions, you have to be a licensed plumber to install the sewer line from the house to the lateral.
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    We have learned that since they have been required to scrub and flush and camera and map the lines, they have seen a statistical relationship between laterals installed after the main line was in, versus those laterals originally installed with the construction.
    This is believed to be caused by soil settlement issues due to the disturbance from undermining the pipe in a small area for the saddle attachment work.
    This has now added a new factor to the quirkiness, sometimes they want the area under pipe to be tamped and backfilled, other times they want it shaved by hand to smooth non disturbed flat area then slurry placed up to the springline, sometimes they want the saddle tee to be wrapped in plastic after greasing the bolts, sometimes the slurry goes over the pipe....once you get the tee figured out, the four inch sdr-35 lateral material goes pretty smoothly with not so much discussion, and there is always a need for a line in the sand cleanout at the property line, and occasionally they want a anti backflow valve with a relief path if you are below the manhole top.
    Be open minded, and of course be safe. And you may want to pay for a camera crawler with distance measure for two reasons:
    to locate a section to dig where there is no butt joint in the mainline (around here increasing a patch can notably effect the cost due to more rules on fixing asphalt and road base)
    and
    to document as found conditions to limit your applied responsibility

  7. #7
    Senior Member heavylift's Avatar
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    around here the city does the sewer taps... mainly because of the lack of quality connections... from the wantabe companies..

    especially the one that hooked up all the houses by drilling a hole in the pipe and just sticking the 4" into the main,lots of problems in that addition... most of the pipe had settled to the bottom of the pipe when backfilled, fixed all 30 connections... shallow digging but still a pain because of other utilities..

    But you still have to prep the hole for the city. They bring the saddle and concrete..
    then wait... wait... wait... they show up about 2 to 3 hours late, usually holding a soft drink cup from one of the 10 stores they stopped at during the day..

    as for a license, here only the owner is required to have a sewer license,

  8. #8
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    As others have said you need to check with the town/city to see how to proceed.
    If there is a lateral it should be a piece of cake.
    In the street making a tap is much more involved depending on a lot of issues. Traffic, depth, pressure or gravity main, type of material, licensing/insurance requirements, etc.
    Some towns require a plumber to make the connection at the house.
    Your local dpw should have all the answers.

  9. #9
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    As others have said check with the local building department. It's been awhile since we've tapped a sewer but no license was required. That will vary depending on your location. The building department AND the sewer utility BOTH had to inspect the taps before they could be backfilled. Some developments had taps installed and capped when they put in the sewer. They were never where they were supposed to be so we used saddles. There's a hefty fee to the utility for new sewer taps here.
    The most "interesting" tap we did was on an 18' deep sewer that had a 44,000 volt power line buried directly above it at 3-4' deep.

  10. #10
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    I live in clinton, IN a small town of about 5000 and some sewer mains are new and some are clay I know and we dont have many regulations or rules about this sort of thing, to my knowledge

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