Saraland Water and Sewer Service

Integrity. Quality. Dependability.

Public Notices


After the first of the year, Saraland Sewer Department will be Smoke Testing in the following areas: Bethel Forest, Lucille, Autumnwood Drive and surrounding area.

For the next few months, Saraland Water and Sewer System crews will conduct smoke testing studies within your neighborhood as part of an on-going program to detect breaks and defects within the sanitary sewer collection system. Information gained from this study will be used to repair and improve the wastewater collection system.

Smoke testing is a relatively simple process that involves blowing smoke mixed with large volumes of air into the sanitary sewer line, usually through a manhole. The smoke travels the path of least resistance and quickly shows up where breaks and defects exist. Smoke will identify broken manholes, prohibited connections (such as roof drains, sump pumps and yard drains), uncapped lines and cracked mains/laterals. At no time will field crews have to enter your business or residence.

During this testing, gray smoke will exit through vent pipes on the roofs of homes and through the ground/location of sewer line breaks. The smoke that is being used is made specifically for this type application and is therefore, non-toxic, leaves no residue, and creates no fire hazard.

The smoke generated to conduct the tests should not enter your home unless defective plumbing exists or drain traps are dry. Dry drain taps usually exist because of fixtures that are not used routinely, such as spare bathrooms or washing machine drain pans; therefore, if you have seldom-used drains, please run water for a minute or two in all your fixtures to ensure all drain traps are full of water. This procedure will help prevent the possibility of smoke entering your living areas through those drains. Please note that if smoke enters your home, then the potential also exists for dangerous sewer gases to enter your home. Although this is a rare occurrence, we recommend you consult a licensed plumber if smoke enters your home. If smoke enters your home, you should report it immediately to the crews conducting the test in your neighborhood or call the number below. Opening of doors and windows should quickly dissipate any smoke.

We request that you notify any handicapped or shut-in persons in your neighborhood of the smoke testing. Your cooperation is appreciated.

Should you have any additional questions concerning the smoke testing or if you desire special assistance, please phone 251-675-5126.