Public Works

Sewer and Storm Drain Unit
24-Hour Hotline (612) 673-5625
or call 311 for non-urgent issues

Sewer Repairs


What should I do if my sanitary service lateral was broken by a company I hired?

If a sewer cleaning company damages your sanitary service lateral, they are responsible for repairing the damage.

My sanitary service lateral was broken by a private contractor or a utility company doing work in my street. Who is responsible?

If a private contractor or utility company damages your sanitary service lateral, they are responsible for repairing the damage.

Is a permit required to repair my sewer lateral?

Yes, a plumbing permit is required to repair a sanitary service lateral to ensure that the work is done properly and meets Minneapolis code. If you are hiring a plumbing contractor to do the work, the contractor typically would obtain the permit. 

Plumbing permits for sewer repairs done by a licensed plumber outside your building by calling (612) 673-2451. Minneapolis Utility Connections provides this list of Licensed Plumbing Contractors for Outdoor Work (2017-2018) that perform outside plumbing work on your sanitary sewer lateral, but cannot give personal recommendations.

Who can repair my sanitary sewer service?

A licensed plumbing contractor can do the work - some of these companies specialize in cleaning & repairing sanitary service laterals. Minneapolis Utility Connections provides this list of Licensed Plumbing Contractors for Outdoor Work (2017-2018) that perform outside plumbing work on your sanitary sewer lateral, but cannot give personal recommendations. How can I find out the exact location of a public sewer on my property?

Call Minneapolis Sewer Operations at (612) 673-5625 or Minneapolis Surface Water & Sewers at (612) 673-2405 for assistance.

How can I find the location of my private sanitary service lateral?

Call Minneapolis Utility Connections at (612) 673-2451. Based on historical records, staff can help determine the location of where your sanitary service lateral taps into the sanitary main. This is only a general estimate of the sanitary service location.

If you are planning on doing any excavating, including sanitary service repair, you are required by Minnesota Statute Chapter 216D to call or contact Gopher State One Call (GSOC). They can be reached at 651-454-0002 or at the GSOC website.

Do I need a sewer backwater valve on my sewer lateral?

Call (612) 673-2406 with a description of your situation and we can help determine your needs.


Does the City of Minneapolis provide a sewer lateral cleaning service?

No. The City is only responsible for maintaining the main sanitary sewer (typically in the center of the street), and periodic sewer main cleaning.

Does the City fix sewer lines on private property?

No. The property owner is responsible for their sanitary service lateral. There are rare instances where the City owns a sewer pipe on an easement or private property. If this was the case, the City would maintain and clean these pipes, as well as make any necessary repairs.

If I believe I have a sewer blockage, can the City determine what the problem is?

It is not the responsibility of the City to determine the cause of a blockage in a sanitary service lateral. You can hire a company to televise your sanitary service lateral. Minneapolis Utility Connections can provide a list of Licensed Plumbing Contractors for Indoor Work (PDF), but cannot give personal recommendations.

How can I get my sanitary service lateral repaired to reduce the chances a future sewer backup?

It is a good idea to keep your sanitary service lateral cleaned and in good working order. If you suspect there is a problem with your sanitary service, contact a plumbing contractor to investigate and repair the issue if needed. Minneapolis Utility Connections can provide a list of Licensed Plumbing Contractors for Indoor Work (PDF), but cannot give personal recommendations.

I paid a plumber to repair my sanitary service lateral, but it turns out the problem was in the public sewer.  Can I be reimbursed?

If a property owner contracted a sewer cleaning company to correct a sanitary service problem, and issue was in a public sewer, the City will reimburse the homeowner for a portion or all of the repair cost.

You can obtain a claim form at Risk Management Claims Office (330 2nd Avenue S, Suite 550, Minneapolis, MN 55401) or you can download the claim form from Minneapolis Claims Process.

Last updated Sep 20, 2017



Contact us

Email updates

Find a service

About this site

For employees

For reasonable accommodations or alternative formats, contact 311.
People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000.
TTY users can call 612-673-2157 or 612-673-2626.

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-637-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500. 


311 call center

TTY relay service


facebook25x25 twitter25x25 youtube25x25 Minneapolis311icon logo tv 14 footer icon image linkedin_32x32