Public Service Announcement: Sump Pump Discharge into Sanitary Sewer


Public Service Announcement: Sump Pump Discharge into Sanitary Sewer


May 15, 2020

Kankakee, IL – The City of Kankakee has an update from the Environmental Services Utility department (ESU) in the following message:

A sump pump discharge line that is hooked up to the city sanitary sewer system is NOT a good idea, especially during this time of the year when heavy rains are anticipated.

The city stormwater system, designed for groundwater and rainwater, is separate from the city sanitary sewer system. This stormwater does not go through city lift stations or the waste treatment facility. The stormwater should flow directly into the nearest fresh body of water. Because of this, the city sanitary sewer system is designed to only handle the demands of DAILY sanitary sewer usage in homes and businesses in the City of Kankakee. It was not designed to accommodate the additional stormwater from these rain events. For additional details, refer to the following ordinance listed below:

Sec. 34‑103.1   Use of Public Sewers

103.1.1 No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged any storm water, foundation drain water, groundwater, roof runoff, surface drainage, cooling waters, or any other unpolluted water to any sanitary sewer.

If you are a homeowner with a basement or crawl space, be aware of the large amounts of water your sump pump needs to handle during a storm. If your pump is discharging into your home’s sanitary sewer rather than outside, it contributes a sizable amount of water pouring into the sanitary system in a short amount of time. To put this in more perspective, imagine if sump pumps all over the city were discharging into the sanitary sewer during a storm. That would be millions and millions of gallons of extra water pouring into the city sanitary sewer system all at once. This would cause the system to become surcharged which will back up in your home, your neighbors’ home, city lift stations and the waste treatment plant. 

No one wants sewage backing up into their home. If your sump pump is currently hooked up to the city sanitary sewer, we ask you to change its configuration and disconnect it. You may not like the idea of having an unsightly pipe pouring water into your yard, but there are plenty more attractive options that will work with your home's current situation and landscaping.

Failure to disconnect your sump pump from your home’s sanitary sewer connection will contribute to flooding in your basement and your neighbors’ basements. Thank you for your understanding and efforts in this matter.

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The City of Kankakee is dedicated to protecting, building and nurturing the community while enhancing lives. We are a historic, vibrant, and active riverfront community. We continue to transform into an extraordinary place to dream, grow, and thrive. Embracing our diversity, we strive to be progressive, inclusive, and innovative. For more information on the City of Kankakee, please visit the website at


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