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Do your part on rainy days

What you can do to Protect Our Waters.

disconnect a downspout

Disconnecting a downspout consists of cutting the downspout, capping the drainage line, and redirecting the flow.

Manage the rain on your property

Keeping the rain that falls on your property out of the sewer system reduces the chance of overflows into area waterways. It can also help property owners control flooding in their own yards or businesses.

Disconnect downspouts

In some older Seattle neighborhoods, stormwater from roof drain downspouts and foundation drains flows into sewers. In other areas, these connections are not allowed.

Homeowners can disconnect roof drain downspouts, yard drains, and sump pumps from the sewer system and redirect them to a rain garden or cistern.

Install a rain garden, cistern, or other green stormwater infrastructure

King County has three programs that may pay all or part of the cost:

  • In the oldest Seattle neighborhoods where sewage and stormwater are combined in the same pipe: RainWise
  • Elsewhere in King County’s sewer system area: Green Stormwater Infrastructure Mini Grants . (This program is managed by Stewardship Partners with funding from King County.)
  • In Unincorporated King County: RainScapes

Find out if your address is eligible on each program’s website.

Repair leaky side/home sewers

Every property has one sewer pipe that connects the building(s) to the larger sewer and treatment system. Groundwater seeps into sewer pipes through holes, cracks, and joint failures in pipes. Repairing your leaky side/home sewer will keep water out of the sewer system and reduce the chance of overflows. These repairs can use trenchless technology, such as pipe bursting, which has fewer impacts to existing landscaping.

Prevent pollution

If you Don’t Flush Trouble, you help keep trash from entering the waterways during an overflow. You can also help keep pollutants out of our streams, lakes, and Puget Sound:

  • Don’t use pesticides
  • Fertilize moderately
  • Clean up pet waste
  • Keep soap, cleaners and paints out of storm drains
  • Fix oil and fluid leaks in cars