Pipes, Plumbing, and Sewer

If you’re a homeowner or landlord, you’re responsible for maintaining the pipes inside your home. You will need to hire a plumber to clear blockages for your home (or for your tenants). 

We manage the street drainage system and can help with sewer blockages.


Sewer and Drain Backups

The sewer is backing up into my basement, what should I do?

Call us to report the problem at 315-448-2489. We will send a crew to flush the vent outside your home. If you are a homeowner or a landlord and we can’t fix the problem, you will need to hire a plumber.

My cellar drain is backing up, what should I do?

If you need to flush your cellar drain, you will need to hire a plumber.

The storm drain (catch basin) on the street is filled with leaves or debris, what should I do?

We maintain the storm drains (also known as catch basins) in the city. They collect water during storms. If you see a basin that needs to be cleaned, cleared, or repaired, contact us at 315-448-2489.

You can help us by keeping catch basins clear of leaves and litter.

Sewer Vent Pipes and Caps

If you’re a property owner, you need to maintain your own sewer vent pipe and cap.

[Add images of sewer vent pipes and caps to this document.]

Debris fell down my sewer vent pipe, what should I do?

Homeowners and landlords will need to contact your plumber to remove the debris from the sewer vent pipe.

Where can I get a sewer vent cap?

You can buy a sewer vent cap at a hardware or home improvement store.

Keep Your Drains Clear

Don’t put fat, oil, or grease down your sink, toilet, or any drain. They can clog your plumbing and the city's sewer system. It's bad for your pipes and can lead to expensive repairs.

How to get rid of grease safely

Small amounts of grease

  • Use a paper towel to wipe the oil pots and pans before washing them or putting them in the dishwasher
  • Put the paper towel in a plastic bag and place it in your trash

Large amounts of grease

  • Safely pour the grease into an old milk carton, frozen juice container, or other non-recyclable sealed package 
  • Seal that item and put it in your trash

Other grease considerations

  • Put fat trimmings or drippings in a bag, or use tin foil on the pan to collect it in the oven. Then dispose of the bag or tin foil in the trash.
  • Never put cooking grease directly into an automated trash compactor. It can cause fires.

Other things you need to throw out — instead of flushing down the drain

Hygiene products

  • Diapers or baby wipes
  • Tampons and pads

Cleaning items (put in the trash)

  • Paper towels
  • Cleaning rags or mop strings 
  • Anything plastic, including gloves

Other Items

  • Cigarette butts
  • Pharmaceutical pills (see our safe disposal guidelines) [Link to "Safe Disposal Guidelines for Sharps and Medications" directly below in this document]

Items that can cause fires or explosions

  • Flammable, explosive, toxic or poisonous liquids, solids, or gasses 
  • Corrosive or acidic items, such as hydrogen peroxide