Above / Smoke testing with non-toxic smoke helps prevent sewer backups. (PN File Photo, Courtesy City of Naperville 2022.)
Smoke testing of the sanitary sewer system to identify leaks and connections where stormwater can enter is scheduled to begin the week of June 26 in several neighborhoods south of 75th Street. Testing is expected to be complete by the end of September, pending weather or unforeseen circumstances.
During smoke testing, air combined with non-toxic smoke is forced into sewer lines. Testing crews can see smoke coming out of the ground where there are defects in the lines. Smoke testing helps prevent inconvenient and expensive sanitary sewer backups and identifies roof drains, patio drains and footing drains that are connected to the sewer system.
A few notes about non-toxic smoke
The smoke used during testing is non-toxic, creates no fire hazard, leaves no residue, dissipates quickly and is harmless; however, those with respiratory issues may wish to take extra precautions, such as leaving the area for a few hours until testing is complete.
Smoke will not enter buildings unless there is defective plumbing or dried-up drain traps. It is expected – and normal – for smoke to come out of the sewer vent stack on the roof of a building during the test.
Door hanger cards will be posted at affected properties immediately prior to testing, and the public can expect to see signs at intersections when crews are testing nearby.
For details about sanitary sewer smoke testing and a map of affected areas, visit naperville.il.us/smoketest.