Please review the section titled “Drainage Tips for Homeowners/Residents” which provides suggestions for homeowners on their private property.
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The storm sewer system carries away excess surface water runoff from rain events and melting snow. These sewer systems flow by gravity and convey stormwater to larger bodies of water such as rivers or retention/detention ponds. Catch basins and inlets are drains that are generally located in the curb along the street or in low spots in yards/drainage areas.
If you have an inlet or catch basin near or within your property, try to regularly keep the area clear of debris such as leaves, yard clippings, and garbage. If an area is not draining properly due to clogged inlets/catch basins, or the structure pipe outlet, contact the City’s Water and Sewer Maintenance Division (630) 256-3710 or after hours at (855) 432-0062.
Basements can flood from rainwater as a result of large flooding events, leaking window wells and walls, failed sump pumps and leaking water pipes to name a few. Another way basements can flood is when there is an issue with the home’s sanitary sewer service or sewer main causing the sanitary service to back up and flood the basement. Immediately report any sanitary sewer backups to the City of Aurora’s Water and Sewer Maintenance Division at (630) 256-3710 or afterhours at (855) 432-0062. The City will investigate the public sewers for issues and correct any problems in the publicly owned sewer if it caused the backup. The homeowner or business owns the sanitary service from the public sewer in the ROW or easement to the home or building. Any issues in the sanitary service are the responsibility of the homeowner to maintain and repair. Tree roots in sanitary services are a common issue leading to basement backups and often require routine maintenance or replacement by the owner to prevent basement backups.
Standing water after a rain event is to be expected. It takes time for stormwater to infiltrate into the ground, especially after the surface has become saturated. Site grading allows water to flow away from a home’s foundation. In some cases, drainage easements are included in the site design and handle large amounts of runoff. Spring often brings heavy rainfall while the ground is still frozen. This leads to standing water on the frozen ground which is to be expected until the ground thaws.
If a resident/homeowner would like to connect their sump pump discharge line or downspouts to the City’s storm sewer system, the homeowner must first contact the Engineering Division. The Engineer Division will check the City’s utility maps and visit the site to determine what would be needed to facilitate the private connection. This can include installing storm sewer from an existing storm structure into the ROW/property line or possibly installing a new storm structure. The property owner/resident will have to fill out a form committing to the private property side of the work and present a quote from their selected contractor. The contractor must be licensed and bonded to work in the City ROW.
Permitting is required during certain homeowner construction activities. Please see the City’s Permit webpage for when a permits are required Permits | Aurora, IL (aurora-il.org). Part of the permitting process is a review of increased impervious areas which can cause drainage issues to neighboring properties. There is also a City Ordinance requiring sump pump or downspouts to discharge a minimum of 10-fet from the property line. The homeowner may contact building and permits at (630) 256-3130 to check for permitted work and call Property Standards at (630) 256-3770 to submit a complaint about possible ordinance violations.
The City assists neighborhoods in cases where large flood events are preventing emergency vehicles from assisting residents, a resident’s health is being directly affected, the safety of the homeowner is at risk each time it rains, or a resident’s property is adversely affected during a typical rain event. The Engineering Division reviews all cases and ultimately determines whether the drainage request falls within the City’s definition of a drainage issue and is within City ROW/Easements for further City involvement.