TriCo Regional Sewer Utility

The official website of TriCo Regional Sewer Utility

Sewer Cleaning

Routine Sewer Cleaning is important to keep things flowing as efficiently as possible. Debris in the sewer lines can cause backups and overflows, contributes to noxious odors and reduces capacity. To prevent this, crews utilize a combination truck equipped with a high pressure water hose. A special nozzle propels the hose up the sewer main line and then is pulled back, flushing the debris to a powerful vacuum where it is then removed from the system. The Utility's goal is to clean the entire system every three years; however there are areas which require more frequent cleaning often due to fats, oils and grease discharged into the sewer. The Utility cleans gravity sanitary sewer lines, so those who have a grinder pump will not be cleaned in this way.
This process normally goes unnoticed. However, approximately 2% of customers report hearing strange noises echoing in their homes or water gurgling in the toilets. This is typically caused by the combination of the force used in cleaning the sewer main and the inadequate venting of the home's plumbing system. Crews do as much as they can to prevent this by venting the sewer main and using the minimum amount of pressure to complete the job. Homeowners can take precautions as well, including closing toilet seat lids and removing the caps from their cleanouts. This will prevent water from splashing from the toilet by letting the lateral vent the air.
Sewer cleaning can raise these frequently asked questions:
  • What is a cleanout and how do I find it? The cleanout is where the sewer lateral to your home can be accessed. It is located near the perimeter of your home either in the front or back and is white or green in color.
  • I now have a sewer odor in my home; what do I do? Sewer cleaning or just the lack of use can cause the traps in your fixtures to become dry. The "P-Trap" is designed to hold a small amount of water which prevents air from entering you home or business. The forced air created during cleaning or evaporation over time removes that water barrier. Simply pour a few cups of water into each fixture to re-seal those traps.





  • What should I do and who do I call if water is blown out of the toilet bowl during the sewer main cleaning? Any liquid blown out of the toilet should be nothing more than the water in the toilet unless there was waste in the toilet bowl that had not been flushed. If you believe you have incurred damages that need repaired or cleaned up more than just wiping up the water, proceed as you see fit to correct the issue. If the damage is due to TriCo's negligence, we have insurance to cover these issues.

    The following steps should be taken:
    • Contact your insurance about this matter because their steps may differ from ours.
    • TriCo will process the claim after the repairs are completed. We require information and documentation details of the problems fixed and the cost per each problem fixed. This information will be submitted as a claim to our insurance agent. They will be in contact with you or your agent regarding the matter.

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