Inflow and Infiltration (I&I)

JCW maintains a system that includes over 2,300 miles of sewer pipe and over 58,000 manholes. During wet weather, stormwater and groundwater enters the system through these manholes and pipes, as well as connections to privately owned sewer laterals. Wet weather flow entering the collection system is called inflow and infiltration (I&I). In older areas of the system, I&I can exceed the capacity of the system during large rain events. Challenges associated with managing I&I during wet weather affect all wastewater utilities in the Kansas City area.  

Programs dedicated to managing, reducing, or eliminating these wet weather flows are a major component of JCW’s Integrated Plan. Each year, JCW executes work to inspect, maintain, and renew the sewer system. This work addresses both structural improvements and fixing leaky pipes and manholes to reduce the amount of I&I entering the system.

 
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How I&I Enters Sewer System

This image depicts various ways I&I enters the sewer system during a wet weather event. Each of these issues causing I&I is addressed through one of the Programs implemented as part of the Integrated Plan.

I&I

Private I&I Program

JCW’s wastewater system connects to thousands of private sewer lines. For the system to function properly, those private connections must be properly configured and maintained. One of JCW’s major public investments is its Private Inflow and Infiltration (I&I) program. 

 

Private I&I occurs when the runoff or discharge from private sump pumps and rain downspouts is directed into the wastewater system. This excess flow can overwhelm wastewater systems and result in private and public systems issues. I&I is not unique to JCW’s wastewater system, but it does require public support. 

  • Private I&I is caused by the connection of private sources (sump pumps, downspouts, area/driveway drains, uncapped cleanouts, foundation drains) to the collection system or broken/damaged private service lateral.

  • Private I&I takes up space in the sewer system with sources that the sewers are not designed to carry. This can overwhelm the sewers with stormwater flow which can lead to:

    • basement backups,​

    • sanitary sewer overflows to adjacent watercourses, and

    • increase treatment costs.

 

What is next? What can you do?

  • Private I&I removal remains the most cost-effective means for individuals to support efficient wastewater treatment operations.​​

  • JCW will be implementing a new targeted Private I&I reduction programs. Stay tuned!

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Manhole Inspection and Renewal Program 

JCW’s system includes over 58,000 manholes. Each year, projects are completed to inspect, rehabilitate, and repair older manholes. JCW executes many repairs through trenchless lining projects (no digging required) to reduce disturbances to roads and residents. This program maintains the structural integrity of the system and reduces unwanted wet weather inflow and infiltration into the sanitary sewer system. 

 

Pipe Inspection and Renewal Program 

JCW maintains a collection system that includes over 2,300 miles of gravity pipes. Each year, projects are completed to inspect, rehabilitate, and repair aging gravity sewers. This program maintains the structural integrity of the system and reduces unwanted wet weather inflow and infiltration into the sanitary sewer system. 

 

Backup Prevention Program

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   Content will be updated as program develops, please check back.