Citywide News Releases

Posted on: September 7, 2017

City of McKinney to begin smoke testing sewer systems

Smoke testing

The City of McKinney will begin conducting routine surveying of the sanitary sewer system through smoke testing. This process is used as a way to locate defective openings and inappropriate connections in the sewer system that allow rainwater runoff to enter, which decreases the system’s capacity and ability to handle normal flows.


Smoke testing requires crews to access manholes and force air combined with non-toxic smoke into the sewer lines to disclose the location of leaks and non-permitted connections. A defect is detected if smoke is seen coming up out of the ground or other locations not expected.  The smoke is non-toxic, creates no fire hazard, leaves no residue, dissipates quickly and is harmless, although those with respiratory issues may wish to take extra precautions such as leaving the home for a few hours until testing is complete.


If a sewer line needs repair, city crews will notify homeowners and begin immediate work to repair the sanitary sewer line. If you see white smoke inside your home during the testing, open all doors and windows for ventilation. Take note of where the smoke is entering your house and email the Wastewater Department or call at 972-547-7360.


Door hanger notification cards will be distributed to those impacted immediately prior to testing, and the public can expect to see signs posted at intersections when crews are testing in that area. Testing will occur between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. McKinney Police and Fire departments are aware of the areas and the daily schedule for smoke testing activities.


More information and FAQs


About McKinney

 McKinney, Texas, is unique by nature. As one of the fastest growing cities in America, McKinney has a current population of more than 168,000. The city was #1 on the list of Best Places to Live in America in 2014, published by Money Magazine. Established in 1848, the city is located 30 miles north of Dallas and is the county seat of Collin County. McKinney offers award-winning schools, a vibrant historic downtown, diverse housing options, a robust economy and a uniquely beautiful natural setting, with rolling hills and lush trees.


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