General Questions

Frequently Asked General Questions

What should I do if I have a sanitary sewer drain problem?

Any time you sense a drain, toilet, etc. that may not be working properly, during normal work hours, immediately call the Authority office at 908-371-9660. Should this occur on a weekend or Holiday, contact the Hillsborough Township Police at 908-369-4323 and they will contact Authority personnel who are on call. Immediate action may be needed to avoid a backup of sewage into your home resulting in property damage. A slow drain may be the first sign of a developing problem. The Authority provides this FREE service of checking out a problem 24 hours a day. PLEASE do not hesitate to call us at anytime.

Whose responsibility is it for cleaning my sanitary sewer line?

The Authority is responsible for the sanitary sewer lines located within the public right-of-way and/or sanitary sewer easement. Included in this area is that portion of the sanitary sewer where the homeowner’s sanitary sewer line connects to the public sanitary sewer. Within one (1) foot of either the right-of-way or easement is a vertical pipe which extends up from the sanitary sewer line beneath the ground to the surface. This structure is called an Inspection Riser and is the point of access for the Authority to maintain that portion of the sewer line defined above within the Authority’s jurisdiction/responsibility. It usually has a metal casting covering it and is set at ground level unless it is an older sanitary sewer connection which will then either be a cast iron or asbestos cement pipe extended above the ground.

REMEMBER, call the Authority FIRST at the initial sign of a problem. Perhaps it is the Authority’s problem and not yours. This could SAVE you the expense of a professional drain cleaning should it not be your problem. Authority personnel will advise you if the problem is yours.

Whose responsibility is it to repair/replace my sanitary sewer line?

Repair/replacement of the sanitary sewer line within private property is the homeowner’s responsibility. The Authority is responsible for all sanitary sewer lines within the public right-of-way and sanitary sewer easements. To assist you, the Authority will televise your sanitary sewer line FREE of charge and provide an evaluation of your sanitary sewer line to assist you in determining the condition and/or locating any deficiencies in need of attention.

I am having repairs done to my sanitary sewer line, what is required as far as permits needed?

The Authority requires notification 24 hours prior to the commencement of such work to assure the connection to the Inspection Riser is properly done should the Inspection Riser be involved in the work. There is no permit or fees required for this inspection. However, any work done to the sanitary sewer line within private property is under the jurisdiction of the Hillsborough Township Building Department specifically the Plumbing Code. Please contact them at 908-369-4313 for their requirements and/or permits.

Why is it illegal for my sump pump to be connected to the sanitary sewer line?

Sump pumps are most commonly used to pump ground water and sometimes rain water from basements. This water is not contaminated and therefore does not need to be treated before being discharged to the environment.

When this water is put into the sanitary sewer system it becomes sewage and requires treatment. During wet weather conditions, the Authority experiences tremendous increases in flow due to leaking pipes in addition to sump pump discharges. The sanitary sewer pipes were not designed to handle these extraneous flows which can cause surcharges in the sanitary sewer system. Increased flows translate into increased costs. Any reduction in flow, in this case sump pumps, helps keep costs down and therefore ultimately your sewer bill. Authority personnel are available FREE of charge for providing advice regarding the proper discharge for you sump pump. Rather than enforce this regulation with fines, the Authority tries to obtain compliance through voluntary cooperation. Click here to read the Township of Hillsborough’s Sump Pump Ordinance.

I notice potholes around town, is there somewhere or someone I can inform?

Now that the snow has melted away, potholes are a frequent issue for drivers.

Click HERE on how to report them in Hillsborough.