How to Prevent Sanitary Sewer Overflow (SSO) & Force Main Breaks

Sanitary sewage overflows can be a disaster, especially for small municipalities, but there’s a technological solution that can help.

Continual extreme pressures on pipelines can cause wastewater transmission systems to break down over time. Unfortunately, many problems go unnoticed until pipes burst or collapse, resulting in sanitary sewer overflow (SSO).

Damages from overflow issues can have extreme economic and environmental ramifications and threaten public health and safety. The best way to prevent sanitary sewer overflow is by taking care of minor problems before they become major headaches.

Why SSOs Occur

Historically, SSO events have been met with reactionary responses, but there is far more destruction happening under the surface before spills occur. Small cracks and breaks in buried pipes can result in joint fractures, and seals or gaskets can shift and become unfastened.

Some contributing factors to deterioration include:

● Biological: The build-up of solids, fats, and oils can obstruct the flow of material.
● Chemical: The use of chemicals can cause corrosion and weaken pipeline walls.
● Environmental: Excess rainfall can overwhelm systems resulting in flooding.
● Natural: Soil erosion and extreme temperature shifts can cause obstruction or breaks.
● Internal: Inadequate, aging, or improper designs are common factors in breakdowns.
● External: Power failures can prevent wastewater systems from functioning correctly.

Hydraulic pressure surges are among the more prevalent causes of pipeline damage. Gas and air pockets in pumping systems can restrict flow and intensify pressure surges, increasing the rate and amount of leakage and contamination. Air pockets can also extend pumping cycles, increase energy consumption, and promote corrosion of pipes and fittings.

Possible Catastrophic Outcomes

Excess sewage can pollute public water sources, contaminate drinking water, and flood basements or community streets. Wastewater carries bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi which can cause mild to life-threatening diseases. In addition to endangering public health, overflows can cause massive property and environmental damage.

A Dynamic Solution to Prevent Sanitary Sewer Overflow

When it comes to SSOs, taking a preventative approach is key. Scrambling for a remedy after a major overflow happens isn’t a situation anyone wants to experience. Avoid surprises by using the correct air valves throughout the pipeline and installing an advanced monitoring system to keep tabs on equipment.

Automatic Air Release Valves

The primary function of an automatic air release valve (ARV) is to add and release air without manual assistance. ARVs come in several designs for use in a range of applications and are available in three basic configurations: Air/vacuum, air release, and combination.

Air Release Valve Monitors

No matter how fail-proof equipment claims to be, every wastewater transmission system requires continual maintenance. Even with the most aggressive service practices, SSOs can still occur. Special ARV monitors provide real time and historical pressure readings within the ARV to diagnose and repair systems and instantly alert to leaking and failing valves.

The Ultimate SSO Prevention Tool

The best way to prevent SSOs is with a safeguarded, multi-level approach. Our remote monitoring system takes prevention one step further by sending immediate alerts when high system pressures are detected or ARVs become blocked, inoperative, or fail in the open position and start to leak. Stay on top of system maintenance by using high-value monitoring tools and avoid costly and harmful spills.

To learn more about Reign’s Air Release Valve Monitoring Solutions, click here.


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What Can Reign RMC Do For You?

Please contact us for additional information or a quote.

What Can Reign RMC Do For You?

Please contact us for additional information or a quote.