Building Connections

Building sewers are generally 10-15 cm (4-6 in) in diameter and constructed on a slope of 0.2 m/m. Building connections are also called house connections, service connections, or service laterals. Service connections are generally provided in municipal sewers during construction. While the sewer line is under construction, connections are conveniently located in the form of wyes or tees and plugged tightly until service connections are made. In deep sewers, a vertical pipe encased in concrete (called a chimney) is provided for house connections.

Part b in Figures 7.11.3 and 7.11.4 show the details of house connections.


Any dip or sag in a sewer that passes under structures, such as conduits or subways, or under a stream or across a valley, is often called an inverted siphon. It is a misnomer because it is not a siphon. The term depressed sewer is more appropriate. Because the pipe constituting the depressed sewer is below the hydraulic grade line, it is always full of water under pressure although little flow may occur in the sewer. Figure 7.11.5 shows a depressed sewer and its associated inlet and outlet chambers.

Due to practical considerations, such as the increased danger of small pipe blockage, the minimum diameters for depressed sewers are usually the same as for ordinary sewers: 150 or 200 mm (6 or 8 in) in sanitary sewers and 300 mm (12 in) in storm water sewers. Since obstructions are more difficult to remove from a depressed sewer, the velocity in a depressed sewer should be as high as practicable, about 0.9 m/sec (3 fps) or more for domestic wastewater and 1.25 to 1.5 m/sec (4 to 5 fps) for stormwater. Using several pipes instead of one pipe for a depressed sewer is also advantageous. This arrangement maintains reasonable velocities at all times because additional pipes are brought into service progressively as wastewater flow increases as shown in Figure 7.11.5.

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