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How your water gets to our stormwater drainage system

Stormwater on your property should be channeled towards the stormwater drainage system. This is done through surface drainage (swales and grading). To protect your home from flooding, weeping tile is often used. Weeping tile is a perforated plastic pipe that surrounds and protects the foundation of your home.  It sits on a bed of gravel, allowing excess groundwater to seep into it. This water is channeled to either the sump pump if you have one (in your basement) or directly to the drainage system.  

Keep your system healthy:

  • Check and clean the weeping tile valves periodically
  • Contact a plumber or qualified contractor for assessment
  • Contact the City of Edmonton at 311 to ensure you get the correct permits if you are considering installing or replacing weeping tile

Sump pumps

Most homes built after 1988 have a sump pump, used in conjunction with weeping tiles. The sump pump is located in a shallow pit in your basement. Its job is to help protect your home from flooding by channeling groundwater away from your home.

Maintenance on sump pumps should be completed by a qualified plumbing technician.

Ensure your sump pump is operating properly:

Test your sump pump according to the manufacturer's recommendations. 

  • Check and clean your sump pump
  • Ensure power is running to the pump
  • Pour water into the sump pit so the pump begins working
  • Check the outside pipe to ensure that water is flowing from the discharge line outside your home

If your pump isn't working:

  • Listen for strange noises coming from the motor
  • Check for oil in the sump well (may indicate a failed pump seal)
  • If the activating switch for the pump works on a float, check that the float is not restricted

If you are not sure, call a qualified plumbing technician for assistance.

Things to consider:

  • Consider an alarm and backup power system in case of failure
  • Disconnect the discharge hose to the outside in the winter to prevent freezing and line blockage