Smoke testing program

We do yearly smoke tests to find cracks, leaks or faulty connections that allow rainwater into the sanitary sewer system.

Key information

Dates

Annually (April through November)

Location

Citywide

Program overview

The City uses smoke testing to find and get rid of connections of “clear” stormwater from the sanitary sewer. During smoke testing, we use non-toxic smoke to identify leaks or faulty connections. These faulty connections may allow rainwater into the sanitary sewer system, which can overflow in a big storm. This work lowers risks to humans and the environment from overflows. It also lowers costs to the City to treat water at the wastewater treatment plant.

During a smoke test, City crews complete the following steps:

  • Send white smoke into the sewer system
  • Observe as smoke comes out through holes
    • Manhole covers
    • Plumbing vent pipes
    • Other locations where rainwater can get into the sewer system

If we plan to do smoke testing on your street, we'll:

  • Notify you by mail
  • Provide more information about what to expect

Learn more

Smoke testing resident notification letter

Smoke testing frequently-asked-questions handout

2021 locations

View a detailed map showing the smoke testing locations planned for 2021.

Project phase

This project is ongoing.

Input

Design

In Progress

Complete

Contact us

Pat Cornelius

Smoke Testing
Public Works

Phone

612-673-3254

Mike Balvin

Field Testing Supervisor
Public Works

Phone

612-430-4184

Kelly MacIntyre

Professional Engineer
Surface Water and Sewers
Public Works

Phone

612-673-3626