LESLIE: On our way to Rhode Island now with Mason. How can we help you?
MASON: Yes, hi. I have a problem with a check valve that I installed on my sewer system.
MASON: And the problem is it failed. It failed twice. And the angle was probably installed the proper way and it failed. So do you know of a safe – failsafe check valve?
TOM: Well, certainly a check valve on a sewage pipe is a good idea because if there – if the public system backs up, it stops it from getting up into your house. We can’t recommend a specific check valve, but if the one that you have is not working – has it been replaced? Or what did you do to correct it once it failed?
MASON: I haven’t done anything. Right now, I am researching and I found a very expensive solution which I have to build a manhole with a – electric connections at a check valve activated light …
TOM: Yeah, that sounds like something that you might use on a commercial system. Let me ask you a question. Why are you putting the check valve in? Have you had a problem in the past?
MASON: Yes, I did. What happened is where I live in Providence, we have a combined sewer rain system. And every time we have a major storm, the system cannot handle it and it backflows in my basement.
LESLIE: Well, that’s because the sewer level’s rising too high so then it’s backing up. What if – I wonder if even just the flap valve is installed the wrong way?
MASON: No, I pretty much checked it and I got someone to check it for me. It was properly installed.
TOM: Mason, I have a suggestion for you and that is to rely on the skills of the civil engineer who is the town engineer for Providence. If this is a problem that’s sourcing from the city, the civil engineer who’s going to be assigned to the municipality is going to have a recommended solution. And I would approach that individual and let them know that you’re not necessarily looking for them to pay for it; unless, of course, you are. But you might want to find out what particular valve they recommend. Because most of the valves that we can – that we’ve researched are for commercial purposes and that’s probably why you found the one that needs the manhole access cover, which is, you know, a little bit of overkill.
I would recommend that you take all the information on your research, go down to your municipality, make an appointment with the civil engineer, state your problem and get their advice. I think that they’re going to be the best folks to get you straightened out on this.
MASON: I appreciate that.
TOM: Mason, thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.