Minneapolis Department of Public Works

Public Works

350 South 5th Street
RM 203 City Hall
Minneapolis, MN  55415-1390

City Sewer Maintenance

What is the City's service responsibility?

The City is responsible for the sanitary sewer mains in the public right-of-way (ROW).  Most sanitary sewers are located in the middle of the streets or in easements.

How does the City of Minneapolis inspect its sanitary sewers?

Our target frequency is that once every 10 years the sanitary sewers will be scheduled for inspection by closed circuit TV. Emergency inspections are done as needed. During this time, Minneapolis Sewer Operations personnel also inspect manholes and other components of the sanitary sewer system.

How often are the sanitary sewers cleaned?

Sanitary sewers are scheduled for cleaning every 8 months to 2 years, depending on pipe size and method of cleaning. Emergency backup calls are cleaned at the time of the occurrence. Cleaning is done with high-pressure jets and combination of jet/vac trucks, rodders, or a procedure called discing.

What is Minneapolis doing to eliminate any infiltration/inflow problems that may exist or develop in the sanitary sewer system?

During our televising procedure, Minneapolis Sewer Operations personnel note cracks in sewer pipes that might contribute to infiltration/inflow (also known as I & I).

How often is the sewer main line in front of my property cleaned?

Sewer main line cleaning is major part of our Sewer Maintenance program. However, certain areas require a higher level of maintenance.  For instance, if an area has a history of heavy root infestation or higher than normal levels of Fat, Oils & Grease (FOG), Sewer Operations personnel clean these sewer main lines on a more frequent basis.  These areas are called Hot Spots.

Is there information available on the history or cleaning frequency of a sewer line?

The City maintains a Sewer Maintenance scheduling system that can provide historical information to realtors on sewer lines serving homes that are for sale. The Sewer Maintenance scheduling system has information about the last time a particular sewer line was cleaned and the frequency of the cleaning schedule.

What is the City's responsibility regarding private sewer laterals?

You, the property owner, are responsible for maintaining adequate sewage flow to and through your private sanitary sewer lateral (also called a sanitary service) to the City's sewer main.  Even though part of your lateral is in the Public ROW, this is still the responsibility of the property owner.

When failure or blockage of a sanitary sewer lateral occurs, Minneapolis Sewer Operations personnel will respond to verify that the sewer main is open and sewage is flowing. If the sewer main is found to be clear, it is the responsibility of the property owner to call a licensed plumber or drain cleaning service to correct the problem in the sanitary service.

For questions, call Minneapolis Sewer Operations at (612) 673-5625.

Last updated Feb. 15, 2012