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4/13/2016 - City of Bangor Launches Sump Pump Identification Program

For Immediate Release

April 13, 2016


City of Bangor Launches Sump Pump Identification Program


The City of Bangor is initiating a program to locate existing basement sump pumps and foundation drains that are improperly connected to the City’s sanitary sewer. These improper connections add groundwater and stormwater flows to the waste water collection system even though these flows do not require treatment at the plant.

The City is providing a mailing to all city sewer customers to request that the residents provide information on if they have a sump pump (or basement drain) and where that sump pump is connected.

The following notification will be sent with the next round of sewer bills to residents and businesses within Bangor who are currently receiving City sewer service:


The Bangor Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) shows large increases in flow during wet weather, indicating that a significant amount of infiltration and inflow (I/I) exists.  I/I is clean water, such as groundwater and stormwater, which enters the sanitary sewer system. Excessive amounts of I/I can contribute to basement sewer backups and combined sewer overflows.  I/I also results in higher costs paid by residents for the operation and maintenance of the sewer system.

A large portion of I/I may be from sump pumps improperly connected to the sewer system. State and local regulations prohibit the discharge of sump pumps into the sanitary sewer. A sump pump is properly connected if it discharges to a stormwater drain pipe, to a drywell or to an overland discharge location in your yard or driveway. A sump pump is improperly connected if it discharges to a sanitary sewer when other viable discharge alternatives exist.

The City of Bangor is initiating a program for the identification of improper connections to the sanitary sewer. If you suspect that your sump pump (or basement drain) may be connected to the sanitary sewer, please contact the City of Bangor Sewer Maintenance Department at (207) 992-4513.  The City will then arrange for an inspection at a time convenient for you to confirm the discharge location of the sump pump.

During the basement inspection by City employees, the inspector may need to temporarily introduce dye water into the sump pump system to determine the discharge location. The inspector may also take notes and photographs of the basement’s internal plumbing and related appurtenances.

Please help Bangor remove extraneous water from the sewer system and thereby minimize the sewer use charges to the residents for wastewater treatment.


For more information, regarding this press release, contact:

Amanda Soucier – (207) 992-4244

For more information, regarding your sump pump, contact:

Chip Swan – (207) 992-4513



The City of Bangor, Maine is a service center community of 33,039 residents and is the county seat of Penobscot County.  Bangor is the major commercial and cultural center for much of northern and eastern Maine.  The City is an equal opportunity employer and service provider.  For information on City projects and news, see