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ENG-REQUEST: Downspout Disconnect Program

Many older homes have downspouts, or pipes that direct rainwater from the roof of a building to ground level. In some cases, the rainwater enters the combined sewers and results in flooding, which could impact water quality.

In 2018, the City of South Bend is offering a free program to disconnect downspouts, cap the drainway, and add extensions ensuring the rain water drains onto the yard instead of the combined sewer. A connected downspout is one that sends roof water into the City sewer. A disconnected downspout sends the water onto the lawn or a flower bed on the homeowner’s property. Disconnecting downspouts from the City’s sewer will reduce basement flooding and improve water quality in our community’s streams and rivers. All homes must have their downspouts disconnected by December 31, 2020. 

Is there a cost for the Downspout Disconnect Program?

Estimates suggest the cost of disconnecting a home is between $100-$150, or less if you are able to do the task yourself. The good news is that the City’s Department of Public Works will complete this work at no cost to the resident. Offered until the end of 2018, the Downspout Disconnect Program is FREE. All homes must have their downspouts disconnected by December 31, 2020. Download the application for the Downspout Disconnect Program.

How do I know if my downspouts are connected to the sewers?

A disconnected downspout sends the water onto the lawn or a flower bed on the homeowner’s property. A connected downspout is one that sends roof water into the City sewer. Downspouts that tie into the combined or sanitary sewers are typically connected to an ‘aged’ standpipe. The standpipe material will be ceramic clay or concrete.

Who is eligible for the Downspout Disconnect Program?

All homeowners in city limits, whose downspouts are connected, are eligible for the program. View the Downspout Disconnection application.  

What happens if it's not feasible to disconnect the downspout?

Submit an application to disconnect the downspout regardless. The contractor will determine if the downspouts are exempt. It is highly recommended that you check the box indicating you would like to be present during the disconnect. The contractor will notify the homeowner 48 hours in advance and provide a window of what time that he/she will be at your property to disconnect. 

How can I sign up for the Downspout Disconnect Program?

Information on the Downspout Disconnection Program can be found here. Complete the disconnect form and submit it to:

City of South Bend - Engineering Dept
Attn: Downspout Disconnection Program
227 W Jefferson Blvd, Ste 1316 
South Bend, Indiana 46601

For 311:

  1. Explain that the resident should read the requirements for being eligible for the program, and if so, fill out the application and submit the form.
  2. For any questions or callers without access to internet, please request resident's name, number, address, and provide a description of their question.
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