Minnesota residents have probably heard the term “I & I” recently and know that it pertains to public works, but there’s a bit more to it than that. Paul Bunyan Plumbing offers some answers to the most common questions about I & I and what it means for Moundsview, Minnesota residents.
“I & I” stands for “Inflow and Infiltration.” Both these terms describe how clear rain and ground water finds its way into the local wastewater system. The wastewater sewers that run below ground exist to divert wastewater out of and away from homes and carry it to sewage treatment facilities. Additional clear water introduced from leaking sewers and sump pumps discharging into the sanitary sewer systems strains the wastewater treatment centers in the area during the spring thaw and summer rains when the ground is saturated.
It may not sound like much of a problem at first; wastewater sewers carry countless gallons of dirty water away, so why should some extra clear water matter? The reality is that the residential wastewater systems in Mounds View and throughout Minnesota were not designed for so much water. I & I can cause these systems to overfill, which has some significant consequences for the area and forces local wastewater treatment facilities to work much harder than necessary to needlessly process clear water through the wastewater treatment process. An overloaded system like this could cause main sewers to fill up during large thunderstorms causing sewage to back up into residents’ homes.
Costs range from $4,000-$9,000 to fix the sewer piping underground using a method called Cure In Place Piping (CIPP) which is the most common way to repair the sewer pipe. Mounds View has financing options that can help alleviate some of the upfront cost for the resident. Each year, I & I cause anywhere from $300 million to $400 million in increased costs, sewer backups, and excessive use of wastewater treatment facilities. The Metropolitan Council Environmental Services (MCES) recently announced new requirements aimed at reducing the amount of clear water entering local wastewater sewers throughout Minnesota. Golden Valley recently identified excess clear water I & I and implemented various reduction methods, from repairing leaky sanitary sewer pipes to removing foundation drains and sump pumps from area residences. The recent MCES initiative aims to address these problem areas by compelling property owners to schedule I & I inspections and perform necessary repairs, if found, out of compliance.
A Mounds View home may need several types of work completed to achieve compliance with the new I & I regulations. Improperly connected roof drains, gutter systems that drain into the wastewater sewer rather than the storm sewer, improperly configured sump pumps, and foundation drains hooked up to the wastewater sewer system all contribute to I & I in the area. Additionally, older leaky pipes in certain areas throughout Mounds View are also major factors behind the I & I problem. One of the new MCES I & I regulations is the requirement for property owners to complete I & I inspections prior to selling their homes.
Paul Bunyan Plumbing has extensive experience with all types of residential plumbing and sewer issues, including those that contribute to I & I in the Mounds View area and beyond. We’re just as committed to assisting our local community as we are to our customers, so you can rest assured that we can help if you need assistance with an I & I related problem on your property, especially if you plan on selling it in the near future.
If you have additional questions about I & I in Moundsview and the services we offer, contact Paul Bunyan Plumbing today.