This section has been updated, given the completion of the North Mianus project and requests from a June 17, 2004 public meeting. The questions are grouped by topic area; you may use the links below to take you to a section.
- If the sewer in the street is a low-pressure sewer line, you must have a pump in order to access the line.
- If the sewer in the street is a gravity sewer but the first floor elevation of your home is below the road elevation, it is likely that you will need to use a pump to lift the sewage up to the gravity sewer.
- If the sewer in the street is a gravity sewer and the first floor elevation of your home is above the road but you have water-using facilities in your basement that may be below the elevation of the sewer, you may need a pump to lift the sewage up to the gravity sewer.
Question: How do I know if I need a pump?
Answer: You will be notified by the Department of Public Works in your letter authorizing your connection to the sewer if you require a pump. All homes on low-pressure sewers will need a pump. If you have additional questions regarding pumps, please contact the Sewer Division.
Question: If I need a pump, how do I obtain it? When do I get it? Who installs it? Who pays for it?
Answer: The pump cost and a portion of its installation are part of the project costs and were assessed to all users at the completion of the project.
The Project provides all of the pumps for low-pressure sewers and homes that cannot connect to gravity sewers with a gravity lateral. During the permit process, you will be identified as requiring a pump, which will be supplied to your site by Town Sewer Division personnel, scheduled with your contractor.
The installation will consist of placing the pump unit in your yard in an excavated hole. You will be responsible for the installation and cost to:
- Connect the lateral leaving your home to the pump and into the Town sewer.
- Attach a power conduit and wire to the pump unit.
- Decommission your septic tank (this is mandatory).
Please Note: The Town will cover $1,000 of the pump installation cost. This $1,000 should be deducted from homeowner's bill and the contractor will be responsible for receiving this money from the Town.
Question: What are the electrical requirements for the pump?
The grinder pump requires a 240 volt single phase power source. The manufacturer recommends a 30 amp breaker, but the unit only draws 8 amps. Clothes dryers, central air conditioning, and electric stoves all generally run on 240 volt single phase power, thus if your home has any of these appliances, then you have the basic power source for the pump.
Question: What happens if I am on a pump system and electrical power goes out?
Answer: If your home is without power, the pump unit will not work. It is important that you restrict water use until power is restored.
The unit comes complete with a 70-gallon storage tank, which will provide some storage during a power failure. Remember, in a power outage, much less water is used by a family. Washing machines and dishwashers will not work, and most people will take fewer and shorter showers in cold water.
If an extreme outage (long duration) occurs, the Town will provide assistance to the homeowners to power the pumps, or pump the accumulated sewage on an as needed basis.
Question: I will require a pump, but I often travel or am away for long periods of time. What happens when I am away?
Answer: The pump comes complete with a level sensor that activates the pump. There is also a high-level alarm sensor. The alarm can be connected to a home security system if you wish and a security company can be notified of the alarm. Obviously, when you are away the need for the pump is significantly reduced due to the lack of usage of water within the home.
Question: What maintenance is necessary with a pump?
Answer: The town will maintain the pumps with a local company. The details have yet to be finalized but it is expected that any repairs and maintenance needs will be a phone call away with a 24-hour on-call firm. The costs of this will be covered by the Town's Sewer Fund.
There are no routine maintenance requirements, and no annual oil changes or service needs.
Question: Why can't I use a pump in my septic tank?
Answer: The Town Health Department requires septic tanks to be abandoned.